Tis’ the season for turkey. It is a staple on many dinner tables each November but cooking the turkey can be difficult to work with and tough to master. While it make look lightly browned and ready for the Thanksgiving table when you remove it from the oven, the bird will continue to cook while it rests, which often times will result in a dry, overcooked turkey.

Co-kitchen manager and Chef Tim Macera is sharing his tips for the tastiest turkey:

One of the most common mistakes people make is not allowing the turkey enough time to thaw before cooking. He suggests removing the bird from the freezer and placing it in the refrigerator to thaw 4 days prior to cooking.

“The day before the big meal, submerge the turkey in a saltwater bath and allow the turkey to brine overnight. The meat will retain the solution and in turn produces a juicy meat.”

While your turkey is cooking, baste the bird every 40 minutes to produce a nice crisp and flavor on the skin. Tim suggests making a baste with chicken stock, butter, and herbs such as granulated garlic, oregano, rosemary, and parsley.

Remove your turkey from the oven, before it is finished cooking and cover the pan with plastic wrap. This will trap the heat and allow the turkey to finish cooking without drying or overcooking the meat.

By allowing ample time to thaw and prepare your turkey, you help to ensure the best flavor and make the bird the centerpiece of the meal. If you are tackling the turkey this Thanksgiving, we have a recipe for you.

Tim’s Traditional Stuffing

1 cup stone ground corn meal
2 tablespoon flour
1.5 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon sugar
¼ teaspoon salt
1 egg
½ cup whole milk
2 tablespoon unsalted butter, melted

1 loaf Italian bread
3 cups cornbread
3 cups bread
½ cup unsalted butter
3 medium shallots
2 celery stalks
2 teaspoons salt
3 tablespoons flat leaf parsley
1 tablespoon fresh thyme, chopped
2 tablespoons white dry vermouth
¾ cup oyster stock

  • Mix all ingredients and bake the cornbread at 350 degrees until golden brown.
  • Remove from oven and let it rest uncovered overnight.
  • Dice cornbread and bread into small cubes.
  • Melt butter over medium heat, add shallots, celery, salt and season with pepper. Cook until soft.
  • Add parsley, thyme, vermouth and oyster stock. Bring to a boil.
  • Add mixture to cornbread and bread mixture.
  • Transfer to 9×13 baking dish and place in preheated oven at 400 degrees for 30-40 minutes or until brown and crusty.

If you would rather leave the cooking up to us this holiday season, we also offer a Take and Bake Thanksgiving menu.