This was our Christmas turkey. The "before" picture is a post below (just a picture, no lyrical prose ...), because the "New Blogger" seems to not like the old Picasa, so posting these pics took almost as long as cooking the turkey.
... But I digress.
Here's how I cook a turkey. It involves copious amounts of wine, so you know it's got to be good.
Step One: The neck and gizzard go in a sauce pan with water, wine, and a bay leaf to simmer while the turkey roasts.
Step Two: I rub some extra virgin olive oil allover the the bird and then sprinkle salt, pepper, and a thick coating of basil. The oil helps to hold all these goodies in place.
Step Three: The bird goes in a 375 degree oven for a few hours depending on how big it is. This one was 18 lbs. and spent about 4 hours in the oven. I put it in uncovered first, and then about halfway through, cover it.
Step Four: Basting. This actually happens about every 30 minutes during the entire cooking process. I baste with wine, literally pouring it from the bottle into and onto the bird and also with the broth formed from the simmering neck and gizzard (NO LIVER!!!). Later, the basting is with the contents of the turkey pan rather than new material.
Step Five: When the bird is done, he gets lifted out to cool a bit before carving. Meanwhile the roasting pan with all those drippings goes on the stove (over two burners) and is brought to a boil . Once it's boiling, a bowl of broth with a few tablespoons of cornstarch dissolved in it is stirred in to thicken those drippings into a rich, deep brown gravy.
That's all there is to it.
So easy, unlike posting pictures to the "new" blogger.
Gotta go, I feel a leftover turkey, turkey sandwich jones coming on.