Wow. I can’t believe how fast Thanksgiving came along this year. And that’s saying something since up here in Canada, Thanksgiving happens at the beginning of October. You’d think that I would have had enough warning right?
This is a recipe/food project I’ve wanted to tackle since Suz and I saw Michael Symon make it on The Chew last year for the Thanksgiving episode. He made a Turketta. Essentially it’s a deboned turkey stuffed with an herb and cured meat mixture, rolled up and roasted. The outside gets a nice crispy skin and the inside is moist and tender. Sounds like a perfect dish right?
Now, every year at Thanksgiving, I’m charged with cooking the bird and in the last few years, I’ve done the traditional roasting it whole. I’ve tried wet brining it, dry brining it, no brine (that didn’t come out so great). To tell you the truth, I’m not the biggest fan of a whole roasted bird. So this year, I thought I would try something different.
I thought this would be the perfect opportunity to try a Turketta with a few of my twists on it. First, I thought I’d add some duck prosciutto from a local shop up here in Vancouver. Essentially making it a TurDucketta. I also thought that instead of roasting it, I would cook the TurDucketta in the SousVide Supreme and then frying it in duck fat to crisp up the skin.
Never one to shy away from a food project, I decided that I would debone the turkey myself. I found a great how to video on Caveman Keto’s website. This is the second time I’ve done it, and while I did shave 20 full minutes off my original time, I’m not quite as fast as Caveman Keto is. Granted, in the video below, he’s deboning a chicken, but for now, this video is a great example how to debone a turkey.
If you don’t feel comfortable de boning your turkey, you can ask your butcher to handle that for you. Just makes sure they keep it all in one piece with the skin intact. And save those bones and giblets for gravy!
This is by far the best turkey I’ve made in my life. The crispy, crunchy skin and the moist, tender turkey meat on the inside makes for one fantastic variation on the main event for Thanksgiving dinner that is sure to please everyone.
- 1 whole 12-14lb turkey, deboned with the skin intact (see note)
- 2 tbs great lakes gelatin
- 1-2 tsp sea salt (see note)
- duck fat, for frying
- 12 oz duck prosciutto (regular prosciutto works as well)
- 1/4 cup duck fat
- 3 sprigs fresh rosemary
- handful fresh sage
- handful fresh thyme leaves
- black pepper
- Add half the duck fat, duck prosciutto, herbs and pepper to a food processor and blend until a paste forms. Set aside.
- Season turkey with sea salt on both the skin side and flesh side and place skin side down on a large cutting board or clean surface.
- Using a sharp knife, score the turkey flesh 1 inch deep in a diamond pattern every inch or so.
- Cut turkey in half so that each half contains a breast, wing, thigh and leg. This will make the TurDucketta more manageable in size in the end.
- Sprinkle gelatin over the turkey flesh coating it evenly throughout. This will help keep it's shape in the end.
- Using your hands, liberally coat the flesh side of the turkey with the herb duck prosciutto paste.
- Roll turkey on itself starting with the white meat first and ending with the dark. This will insure that the breast meat stays tender and moist. Tie with butcher twine to keep the TurDucketta together.
- Repeat with second half of turkey.
- Vacuum seal each TurDucketta and place in the fridge overnight.
- Preheat SousVide to 165° F.
- Remove TurDucketta from fridge and set on counter and allow to come up to room temperature.
- Gently place each TurDucketta pouch in the water bath, cover and cook for 4 hours.
- When time has elapsed, remove TurDuckettas from the SousVide and place immediately in cold or ice water to cool. Remove TurDuckettas from their pouches, pat dry and set aside. Let stand for about 10 minutes. Note: Save those cooking juices for making gravy later!
- In a large cast iron skillet, heat enough duck fat or other preferred quality fat of choice over medium high heat. Fat will be ready once it stops sputtering.
- Fry TurDucketta for 5 minutes per side. Use a large metal spoon or ladle to baste the TurDucketta with hot oil. Frying is finished once each side is a nice dark golden brown and the skin is crispy.
- Remove from skillet and let stand for 10 minutes.
- Slice TurDucketta and serve!
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