LOUISVILLE, KENTUCKY - APRIL 03: Alton Brown performs at Whitney Hall on April 03, 2022 in Louisville, Kentucky. (Photo by Stephen J. Cohen/Getty Images)
Alton Brown’s Trick For Evenly Roasted Turkey Needs Nothing More Than Foil
In an episode of “Good Eats,” Alton Brown explained that all you need to evenly roast a turkey is what he calls a “turkey triangle” — a large, triangular sheet of aluminum foil.
The breast of a whole turkey tapers from wings to legs in the shape of a large triangle. Brown says to take some foil and shape it against breast before the bird goes in the oven.
To shape the foil to the breast of the turkey, Brown rubs the foil with canola oil to keep it from sticking to the turkey skin and presses the foil against the breast.
The foil forms a protective plate against heat, avoiding the dreaded dry white meat. Brown starts by roasting the turkey in a 500-degrees F oven for 30 minutes to brown the skin.
Once the half hour is up, Brown plates the plate of foil over the breast. He then turns the heat down to 350 degrees Fahrenheit, until both the dark and white meat are done.
Look for doneness temps of 175 degrees for the dark meat and 165 degrees for the breast meat. A 14-pound turkey, using this method, should take an hour and a half to roast.
By protecting the breast meat with the aluminum foil, you slow down its rate of cooking and allow the dark meat to catch up to it, ensuring an evenly roasted turkey.