Are you intrigued by the idea of a bacon-wrapped turkey? Not only does it serve as an impressive centerpiece, but the bacon “skin” helps yield a juicier and tastier bird. What’s even better is – it’s not nearly as complicated as it looks.
There are lots of recipes for bacon-wrapped turkey on the internet but the truth is, you can use almost any tried-and-true turkey recipe with just a few modifications. If you want to give it a try this year, we’ve got some tips to make sure it turns out amazing.
- Start with good bacon. Thicker bacon works best. Thin bacon cooks up too quickly and will burn. The bacon is also integral to imparting a fantastic flavor, so make sure you choose one with a flavor you love! Fletcher’s offers four great bacon varieties including Dry Cured, Hickory Smoked, Maple Flavor, and Pepper Crust. Any of these would be great on your bacon-wrapped bird!
- Create a bond between the bacon and the turkey. Slather your turkey in butter to create an adhesive-like layer to affix the bacon. Use this opportunity to add additional flavor to your turkey – mix in herbs and spices before applying it both under the skin and on top of the skin. You can even mince or puree some a couple of pieces of raw bacon and add it to the compound butter for extra bacon-y goodness.
- Prepare the bacon. Wrap the legs and wings in individual strips of bacon. Then, create a large square bacon weave on a sheet of parchment paper.
- Freeze the bacon. It can be difficult to transfer the bacon weave from the counter to the turkey without it falling apart. To make this easier, place the bacon in the freezer for about 10 minutes or until partially firm. Then, you should be able to pick up the bacon weave and place it over the main body of the turkey.
- Add water. Add a couple of cups of water to the bottom of the roasting pan. This helps keep the bacon from cooking too quickly.
- Watch your temp. Most turkey recipes begin with instructions to start on high heat for a brief time, and then reduce heat for the duration of cooking. It’s perfectly fine to follow these instructions, but avoid oven temps higher than 425 degrees to prevent the bacon from burning.
- Cover with foil. Watch your turkey. If your bacon is browning too quickly or looks like it’s done before your turkey reaches proper temperature, cover it with foil to prevent it from burning.
A bacon-wrapped turkey makes for an impressive holiday presentation – and it can be your little secret that it’s far easier than anyone thinks. To keep with the bacon-filled theme on your holiday table, try these side dishes from Fletcher’s: