The Turkey

A couple months ago, around easter, Safeway had a deal where if you bought a turkey under 16lbs you could get it for 99cents a pound.  This price was too good to pass up so Melisa and I immediately trekked out and procured a 15lbs bird, obviously wanting to make the most of this sale.   Since then this turkey has been sitting in our deep freeze, waiting for it's time to shine, and today it shined so bright.

In preparation for today's feast yesterday over lunch I bought ingredients for the stuffing.  (a good homemade stuffing is the key to a turkey dinner)

16 or so nice big fresh mushrooms, a couple onions, some celery, and the pièce de résistance:

2 fresh challah loaves.  If you have never had stuffing made from challah you are missing out.

The turkey itself spent about 24 hours hanging out in the sink taking a nice bath in cold water, here's a look at the little guy:

He was such a champ!

Next it was time to cut up the veggies, fry them up, and then cube the bread:

We were a bit ambitious on the amount of stuffing we wanted to make but it's just so delicious.

After the turkey finished its thaw we rubbed it down in salt, pepper, rosemary, and a healthy portion of paprika.

I forgot to take a picture of the 'process' of combining the stuffing mixture together but through the help of a couple cubs of chicken broth and a couple eggs and a bunch of poultry seasoning (it got a bit messy) the mixture was ready to be stuffed into the turkey like so:

It was a tight fit but we managed to get it all in there! (again a bit ambitious with the amount of stuffing!):

Turkey and stuffing just barely fit into our roaster, the lid wouldn't exactly close all the way but that was no problem.  We cooked the turkey at 325 for an hour and a half and then basted it with it's juices every 30 minutes.  After 4 hours total he was ready.

Holy cow, does that look good or what!  Also if I didn't mention it already we were a bit ambitious with the amount of stuffing we made:

There was still more in there that I didn't discover until the carving process!  I tried a new method of carving today where you slice the legs right off and then slice the breasts off the turkey before slicing up the breasts themselves:

I think it turned out pretty well!:

Here's the full spread!  Melisa made way too many mashed potatoes, there were still some in the pot that didn't even make it into the bowl.

After carving the rest of the carcass we had an insane amount of leftovers:

Good thing turkey sandwiches are so delicious!