So I did something weird. I roasted a turkey. On a random day. In April. Weird, right? I could tell that the husband and pups were quite confused by the strong smell o’ roasted turkey in the house. Well… the organic turkey breasts were on sale after Easter and I happen to have this thing for sales. I did try a different recipe from my usual Thanksgiving brine. I did a salt rub and LOVED it! I remember last season (or was it the season before?) where magazines boldly declared that brines were out and rubs were in. I’ve never been one to go with trends, so I still brined my Thanksgiving turkey, like I do every year. I didn’t want to risk trying something new when I have company coming. But since this was random turkey roasting, all bets were off!
Salt Rub Roasted Turkey Breast Recipe
1/4 cup coarse kosher salt
1 teaspoons dried rosemary
1 teaspoons dried rubbed sage
1 teaspoons dried thyme
1 teaspoon black peppercorns, crushed
2 small bay leaves, torn into small pieces
3 teaspoons finely grated and minced lemon peel
whole turkey breast (about 5-6 pounds)
3 medium onions, chopped
3 medium carrots, chopped
3 stalks celery, chopped
4 tbsp butter, melted
1. Combine the first 7 ingredients in a small bowl. Really use your fingers and incorporate the ingredients together. Generously rub the inside and outside of the turkey with the salt rub. I also put some of the rub under the skin. Wrap in plastic wrap and store in the refrigerator for 24 hours.
2. Remove turkey from the refrigerator and rinse very well. Dry the turkey with paper towels, place in roasting pan and return to the refrigerator for a few hours to dry out the skin. This can be skipped if you don’t have the time, but at least make sure to dry the skin well.
3. Preheat oven to 425. Place the chopped vegetables in the bottom of the pan to create raft for the turkey. If your roasting pan is really big, you may need more veggies. Place the turkey on top of the vegetables.
4. Generously brush turkey with the melted butter and place in the preheated oven. Set a timer for 15 minutes. After 15 minutes, turn the heat down to 350 and continue roasting until an instant read thermometer registers 165 degrees in the middle of the breast. It usually takes about 15 minutes per pound. I start checking the temperature of my turkey at 12 minutes per pound. Nothing worse than overcooked dry turkey!
Note: I also made pan sauce, find recipe here.
Note 2: If you’re making a whole turkey, skip the veggie raft, instead, stuff the cavity with the vegetables. Also, increase the amount of rub to accommodate a larger turkey.