1 (12- to 14-pound) fresh or frozen turkey, thawed
1 tablespoon salt
2 teaspoons seasoned salt
1 teaspoon ground black pepper
1 teaspoon poultry seasoning
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon paprika
1 teaspoon ground red pepper
1 teaspoon dried basil
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
2 tablespoons butter or margarine, softened
1 cup water
Garnishes: kumquats, fresh sage, fresh rosemary
How to Make It
Remove giblets and neck from turkey; reserve for making Giblet Gravy, if desired. Rinse turkey with cold water; pat dry. Place turkey, breast side up, in a greased broiler pan. Combine salt and next 8 ingredients. Using fingers, carefully loosen skin from turkey at neck area, working down to breast and thigh area. Rub about one-third of seasonings under skin. Rub skin with softened butter; rub with remaining seasonings. Tie legs together with heavy string, or tuck under flap of skin. Lift wing tips up and over back; tuck under turkey.
Add water to pan. Cover turkey with aluminum foil. Bake at 325° for 3 to 3 1/2 hours or until a meat thermometer inserted into meaty part of thigh registers 180°, uncovering turkey after 2 hours. Transfer turkey to a serving platter, reserving pan drippings for gravy. Let turkey stand 15 minutes before carving. Garnish, if desired.
Tip: If you buy a frozen bird, remember to allow about 3 days for a 12- to 14-pound turkey to thaw in the refrigerator.
I've been making this turkey for a few years now. My husband won't let me make it any other way LOL! He says this is the BEST turkey ever; even better than his mom's! It is really good. Because of the water in the pan and covering it with foil it stays pretty moist. And with all the spices it's very flavorful. I love the ease more than anything; you don't have to constantly baste it, etc.
My husband always does the turkey, this year he couldn't. I was panicked, we had 14 guests coming. I have NEVER done the turkey. I found this recipe. I had everything in my spice rack except basil. I rubbed it under the skin. Put butter on the top, put more on the outside. I wasn't very accurate, I had other things to cook. I put the turkey in a baking bag with the cup of water. I did quarter an onion and tossed in some celery stalks. Put a bit of Rosemary and sage on top. I baked it at a lower temperature 315, as I needed to slow down the cooking. It was amazing. I thought afterwards that the broth in the bag would have made an amazing base for soup. Everyone loved my turkey. Thank you for sharing.
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