Andrew Zimmern smiling in front of a blue wall.
Andrew Zimmern's Clever Turkey Trick For More Even Roasting
It’s very common to pull a turkey out of the oven with overdone white meat and undercooked dark meat. Chef Andrew Zimmern has a solution: boil the dark meat in stock beforehand.
As a turkey roasts, the lean breast meat is more exposed to the oven's heat, while the fattier dark meat, being on the bottom half of the bird, is more insulated.
According to Zimmerman, a turkey's white meat reaches its internal doneness at 160 degrees Fahrenheit, while dark meat needs to reach 175 degrees Fahrenheit.
Boiling the turkey’s dark meat beforehand allows the dark meat to get a head start on the cooking process, so the whole bird is evenly cooked at the end of its time in the oven.
To start, bring two inches of stock to a rolling boil inside the turkey roasting pan, then place the turkey onto the pan and put it in the oven for 10 minutes so the stock boils.
The stock will surround the dark meat on the underside of the bird to cook it gently and prime it for the roast. You can reserve the stock to make a delicious gravy.