Old-Fashioned Roast Turkey with Gravy
From Cook's Country
We needed a potent ingredient for our Old-Fashioned Roast Turkey with Gravy recipe that would slowly release its flavor during cooking. We tried a number of options until we discovered a technique used for ages: larding, a process of inserting strips of lard (or other animal fat) into the turkey meat so that it slowly releases flavor and moisture throughout roasting. After piercing the skin of the turkey breast with a fork, we covered the breast with thin slices of salt pork before layering on a soaked cheesecloth and foil. This insulated the breast and allowed the salt pork to slowly melt in the oven, basting the turkey with rich fat.
Serves 10 to 12
You will need one 2-yard package of cheesecloth for this recipe. Because we layer the bird with salt pork, we prefer to use a natural turkey here; self-basting turkeys may become too salty. If using a self-basting turkey, use all water in the gravy rather than a combination of water and broth. Make sure to start the gravy (step 3) as soon as the turkey goes into the oven.
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