Category Archives: Turkey

Cooking your turkey – there’s an app for that

OK …. the most regular question from both turkey virgins and old hands is …. “How long should I cook the turkey ?”.  Each family seems to have developed its own approach to the whole business.

It can be a very stressful time especially if you are hosting Christmas lunch for the first time and want to impress – but you don’t always need to get up in the middle of the night to kick the whole the process off.

You might like to look at this app that seems to be getting reasonable reviews ….   at just 69p it might be a life and reputation saver ….

The write up says ….

TurkeyTimer helps you take the guesswork out of Christmas and other holiday cooking. Enter the weight of your turkey, whether it’s stuffed, your desired internal temperature, and whether you plan to baste the turkey. Using algorithms based on top cookbook instructions, TurkeyTimer will track the approximate brownness of your turkey, the approximate internal temperature of your turkey, and about how long it will be until you can take the turkey out of the oven. This handy tool will even remind you when it’s time to baste the turkey!

– Know how soon your turkey will be ready
– Know your turkey’s internal temperature
– Track your turkey’s brownness
– Choose between a moister or a dryer turkey
– Know when it’s time to baste
– Always works, even if you send text messages or make or receive phone calls

With TurkeyTimer, you can be certain that your turkey will be perfect!

It’s a bit Americanised and I’m not sure though about defrosting times as I always say fresh is best – support your local butcher ….

Charlie the butcher


Stuffing for your turkey

It is often the trimmings that really make a Christmas lunch and I am frequently asked for advice on stuffing !!

I usually recommend people to look at my old mates at the Good Food Channel where I sometimes pop up.

Click here for some excellent stuffing ideas.


They also have some really great ideas for trimmings here.
Charlie the butcher

Thanksgiving – Turkey Day

It’s all getting busy in the build up to Thanksgiving Day on Thursday 25th November with the requests coming in for the traditional turkey, in fact in  USA it is often called Turkey Day.
For us it provides some interesting possibilities for our own take on a Christmas turkey recipe.

'The First Thanksgiving' by Jean Louis Gerome Ferris

Traditionally, this famous American feast celebrates a meal held at the site of Plymouth Plantation by the Pilgrim Fathers who settled in Massachusetts in 1621 and ‘gave thanks’ to God for helping them survive a particularly harsh winter.

This celebration occurred early in the history of what would become one of the original Thirteen Colonies that later were to become the United States. Thanksgiving was modelled on harvest festivals that were common in Europe at the time.

Thanksgiving in the United States was observed on various different dates throughout history. By the mid 20th century, the final Thursday in November had become the customary day of Thanksgiving in most U.S. states. It was not until December 26, 1941, however, that President Franklin D. Roosevelt, after pushing two years earlier to move the date earlier to give the country an economic boost, signed a bill into law with Congress, making Thanksgiving a national holiday and settling it to the fourth (but not final) Thursday in November.

But back to the turkey and some suggestions for Thanksgiving and Christmas …

Free Range Norfolk Bronze Turkeys

Nowadays, Thanksgiving is widely considered to be more of a public holiday rather than a religious one, and is celebrated with traditional foods served at Thanksgiving meals. Roast turkey, mashed potato, yams, and cranberry sauce are all favourites likely to be seen on the table, with pumpkin pie an extremely popular dessert.

Every newspaper and magazine will be full of the usual cooking advice so I’ll keep it simple and point you towards what I think are the best ideas ….

Turkey recipes.

I’d suggest that you visit the folks at ChowHound for the full American ….

Nearer to home you should try these great suggestions at Delicious Magazine

Charlie the Butcher


Last week I was very busy with the knife as it was Thanks Giving. The typical meal is a roast turkey, but a couple of weeks ago I was asked to make a “turduckin”. I had never herd of such a thing before so had to do my research and it’s a de-boned chicken and a duck all inside a de-boned turkey. Filled with sausage meat. It’s a twist on the royal roast “Bird inside a bird”. Its called tur-duc-in. As you can now guess it is Tur from turkey,  Duc from duck and In from chicken. It is also not uncommon to create a Gooducken by swapping the turkey for a goose. It was a delicate operation but looked great at the end and the yanks were “well chuffed” with it. I would love to try one as its sounds great and looks even better so here’s to a Turduckin for next year’s Thanks Giving. I used a free range bronze turkey about 6kg, one free range Bressingham duck and a free range chicken. But on the good side I had a beautiful rolled rib of beef for my Sunday dinner.

Charlie the Butcher.