Thanksgiving will be here soon. I wanted to share a simple technique that will create a moist turkey (chicken, Cornish game hem or turkey breast, chicken breast) and great stuffing consistency while eliminating the foodborne illness dangers of stuffing the turkey cavity with dressing!
Some folks like to brine a turkey (and other poultry) and that is useful if you have the time, and the following tip would still apply.
The technique I'm sharing here is a simple safe way to prepare the turkey, turkey breast, Cornish game hen, whole chicken, chicken breast) just prior to baking while avoiding both dry oven baked dressing and the risky practice of stuffing the turkey cavity.
- Rinse and dry the turkey or chicken.
- Create a pocket under the skin of the poultry.
- Starting at the neck of the turkey, slide your fingers between the skin and the turkey using your fingers to gently stretch and separate the skin creating an even pocket along the length of the breast on both sides.
- Stuff the pocket with your unbaked dressing and bake as directed in your recipe until the turkey reaches a minimum of 165 degrees. * Placing the stuffing under the skin of the turkey will actually insulate the turkey resulting in a moist breast and stuffing that has a nice consistency. * As an added benefit he presentation of the stuffing under the skin looks great when sliced and served.
Note: This technique will avoid the foodborne illness concerns warning regarding stuffing the turkey cavity with dressing.One of the problems with that method of preparing stuffing is that the internal temperature of the stuffing takes longer to come to safe temperature than the turkey itself and not bringing any meat or poultry to the proper internal temperature verified with a thermometer probe….well, that IS a recipe for disaster. Stay healthy use a proper thermometer. (I use a Taylor digital thermometer, love it!).
Enjoy your upcoming Thanksgiving celebrations!