Monday, October 6, 2008

BEST Roast Turkey Breast



People always ask "How come your turkey is always so moist? Why isn't it dry?"
Well, do you want it to be DRY? I can arrange that if you like.

For Thanksgiving, I always made a huge turkey in a Reynolds Oven Bag that barely fit in my oven. It was always a problem heating up the side dishes, when the damn oven was occupied.
Wouldn't it be nice to have a DOUBLE oven? I have a friend who doesn't cook, and she has a shiny, new, baby blue, enamel La Cornue double oven. Yes, folks, $10,000. and that girl don't cook!

Last year, my small house held 16 people for Thanksgiving. We moved out all the living room furniture and rented tables and chairs. Put pretty table cloths on all of them and lovely centerpieces, and here is how I solved my big turkey problem.

I made 2 turkey breasts. No dark meat, and no one even noticed. No one fought over a leg or a thigh. There was too much wine, hors d'oevres and delicious bird to care.
Since that day, I have been making turkey breasts for dinner during the week, yes, a turkey! How easy, and I swear, they are NEVER DRY. If you follow my recipe, you will be hooked and it makes the very best leftovers the next day for delicious roast turkey sandwiches.



First, start with a kosher turkey breast ON THE BONE WITH SKIN (if you don't have the skin, then I can't help you).

I find kosher turkeys or organic are the best. I only buy Empire, or Bell & Evans chickens & turkeys, and a brand called Aaron's, that Trader Joe's sometimes carries. It makes a big difference. They are leaner and cleaner, trust me.

I make a fresh green herb mixture to stuff under the skin and in the middle of the breast. This consists of whatever you have. My usual herb mixture is:

a handful of chopped fresh parsley
a handful of chopped fresh sage
a handful of chopped fresh rosemary
(if I have basil, I use that, I have even used leftover cilantro).
1/2 onion, chopped fine
2 cloves garlic, chopped
kosher salt & pepper
4 tbsp of olive oil


Mix all together in a bowl. Lay your turkey breast in a roasting pan and rub this mixture underneath the skin and in the pocket fold of the breast. You should have about 1 cup of herb mixture. Rub the remaining herb mixture on the top of the turkey skin. Season with kosher salt and rub with a little olive oil.

Pour about 1/2 cup of any type of stock around the breast and roast in a 375 oven for 75 minutes (for a 3-4 lb. breast). Take out when meat thermometer registers 160 degrees.
Keep on counter 10 minutes before slicing.
If you like gravy, whisk a tbsp of flour into roasting pan and simmer on the stove. Keep whisking until desired consistency.
Pour over sliced turkey on platter. It's better cold! It is NEVER DRY. Comes out perfect every time! Make this with those little savory bread puddings.
Happy Turkey day, early!


Serve with roasted sweet potato wedges.
400 degree oven. Slice sweet potatoes and sprinkle w/ kosher salt and olive oil.
Roast until crispy.


The best part is the sandwich the next day!!!!

22 comments:

kat said...

We like to do the breast for just the two of us as well. I love how juicy it comes out. Do you ever brine yours? We found that just does wonders

Jeni said...

Great advice. I brine my turkeys and start em out breast side down and flip halfway through cooking to keep those breasts juicy. This sounds much easier!

Lisa said...

You're right! The sandwich is the best. Looks like some nice moist turkey.

Zesty Cook said...

Stacey - this looks great. I may try what you did the turkey breast looks amzing. When i roast any fowl I always do breast side down but i love your technique and your rub. Can't wait to try it.
I love your blog too..

EllenB said...

Stacey -- I can't wait to try this recipe! Any reason why you can't still cram stuffing in the bird? Are you not a stuffing person? And for even moister turkeys, hypodermic needles full of basting juice will do it every time (the upside to being a diabetic, I guess).

lisa said...

Well great. I just had lunch, and now I desperately want that turkey sandwich!

Proud Italian Cook said...

I swear I'm doing that this year! But for some reason (I don't know why) my family wants to see the whole bird in the oven! No one eats the dark meat, they all like breast meat, and they all want leftovers to take home. I'm taking control and making 2 breasts this year, stay tuned to see who wins!lol. I love everything about your recipe here and the way you cooked the turkey. I don't know why I don't make it more often, you inspired me to do so.
Hugs, Marie

EllenB said...

By the way, how do you eat all the stuff you make and still stay a size 6? Are you a gym rat or is your metabolism something to be envied? I feel like I gain weight just looking at the PICTURES on your site!

Stacey Snacks said...

Hi ellenb:
Thanks for the nice words about the blog......
regarding stuffing:
I love stuffing, but there is really no place to stuff the bird, since there is no cavity. It's really a half of a breast. I guess you can stuff it underneath the turkey!
I am stuffing a chicken right now w/ potatoes and olives, so that will be another post.

Krysta said...

mmm... turkey. i cannot wait for thanksgiving. wait until you see what i do!

laura k said...

Why is it that people who don't cook always have the best kitchens?

AnticiPlate said...

I really do need to just make turkey breast. I only make turkey once a year on thanksgiving, or eat it on a sandwich. Thanks for the motivation:)

Pam said...

What a great turkey breast! I love the sandwich the next day - my favorite part.

Alli411 said...

Great recipe! I made a turkey breast this afternoon. This was the one blog I checked for cooking suggestions. I put chicken broth in the roaster as you suggested and it turned out fab! Thanks! www.alli411.com

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Lisa said...

I am a "dark meat" gal and I'm happy to be in the minority! More good stuff for me! ;-)
On an off-topic note, I'm sorry to see your comment section getting spammed. (see comments just above mine)

JoyinJesus said...

I used the herb paste under the turkey skin idea this year! It was delicious! Everyone loved my turkey this year! First time family raved over my turkey!

Stacey, I "stumbled" upon your blog and I'm so glad I did. You see.. I hate to cook! But I have tried a few of your recipes with great success and now I think I may have moved to a new level .. it's called, "well, i like to cook a few things." :)
Thanks for your blog... I read it every day!

Heather said...

Do you need to use fresh herbs? Can I use dried herbs?

Deb Schneider said...

Found your recipe when 'googling' best roasted turkey breast, and it is awesome. I roasted it in a crockpot on high for about 3-4 hours and then turned it to low until I could take care of it, about another hour. Can't thank you enough, I'm sharing the seasoning with everyone! I did not serve it warm, just cooled it and used it for sandwiches, the best!

Deb Schneider said...

loved this recipe for seasoning. Made a turkey breast in the crockpot for 4 hours with chicken broth and cooled it for sandwiches, it was awesome, and so much better for you than that nasty deli sliced turkey! Thank you!

Kay Malan said...

This turned out great! I, unfortunately, did not have fresh herbs. I did use dried minced onion, rubbed sage, dried thyme, kosher salt, dried rosemary, garlic powder and black pepper and pulverized them all together in my little chopper appliance. THen I mixed that with the olive oil then rubbed it under the skin and on top. I also placed sliced lemon on top. Delicious flavor. If using fresh herbs and onion are better than this then I'm not sure I could stand it. Thanks for a great recipe