Netflix, during the stay-at-home months of the pandemic, became a primary entertainment source for families huddled together day and night with few other options than surfing the net or watching television. A positive takeaway from all this screen time was the effort many put into teaching themselves to cook. Perhaps the single best cooking series we devoured during the pandemic was Samin Nosrat's Salt Fat Acid Heat series in which she succeeds on her claim that the book will help home cooks in "mastering the elements of good cooking."
Her totally unassuming and easy to follow food science explanations coupled with an understanding of the simplicity home cooks seek in cooking delicious meals for their families provides a road map for exploring the techniques she presents when preparing other recipes. Perhaps the most sensational recipe in her 462 page cookbook is her buttermilk brined roasted chicken--a recipe we turn to monthly with consistent and impressive results every time. So, why not try the approach with the Thanksgiving turkey. A few adjustments to the technique (given the size differential and fat composition) and a gorgeous bird is ready in no time and with very little effort in preparation or cooking. This recipe does not work with a bird over fifteen pounds with ten to twelve pounds the sweet spot. D'Artagnan Foods offers a gorgeous restaurant bird raided by Green Circle that is hormone and anti-biotic free. Taking a simply prepared turkey and dressing it up with a bouquet of flowers is such an easy and gratifying way to present a celebration centerpiece. Foraged greens, a bit of colorful seasonal fruit (we used persimmons), and some autumn colored flowers made it so difficult to cut the turkey--we finally did and the juicy meat and crispy skin were exactly what we had hoped to recreate using Nosrat formula for perfect roast chicken.