Thanksgiving has got to be the best holiday of all: not only is it focused on gratitude, family, and a big meal - but also the foods of Thanksgiving are my personal favorites - especially turkey.
Now, turkey and I have not always been on speaking terms. My mother, who could turn a chuck steak into something approaching filet mignon, was hopeless with the big bird. Not surprising, since she came from a culture that once used fowl in its spectator sports
- our Thanksgiving turkeys invariably had the interior texture of a soccer ball. At the time, I thought I just didn't like turkey, and choked it down smothered in gravy.
One day I had a revelation when a friend cooked up turkey perfection: juicy white meat, dark meat sliding off the bones...I resolved that henceforth, all turkeys would be like this one!
I learned that the challenge of perfect turkey is that it needs a different final temperature for the white meat (145) and dark meat (165) To make sure my turkeys are perfect every time, but still give you that Normal Rockwell moment at the table that we all crave, I came up with the following solution: