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Oct 19, 2012 01:27 PM

Thanksgiving turkey challenges - teeny tiny oven

My oven is too small to cook a turkey and other dishes. I have made my turkey on the grill - takes forever in the Minnesota cold. I've cooked it in an electric roaster. Cooked too fast. I've cooked it in parts - too moist. I don't have the guts to fry a turkey. Has anyone ever used one of the no oil turkey fryers - essentially a very high heat, enclosed roaster? Other ideas?

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  1. In the new Bon Appetit there is a recipe by Suzanne Goin of Lucques fame for a cooking a turkey by roasting the breast and confiting the legs and thighs in order to cook each part perfectly. You might want to give that a look.

    1. What about spatchcocking it? Just cut the backbone out and flatten the turkey, then roast. It cooks faster (freeing up your oven more quickly for other things) and takes up a lot less room.

      4 Replies
      1. re: biondanonima

        I do this all the time with chicken. It is a great way to cook the bird more quickly.

          1. re: biondanonima

            Thanks for the great idea. Now can I enjoy roast turkey with my humble oven.

            1. re: biondanonima

              Believe it or not, my oven is even too small for this. Or maybe my turkey is too big. A 12 pound turkey would fit, but that's not much turkey.

            2. Have you tried the Weber? I'm right next door to you and use the Weber every year. As a matter of fact, the turkey is usually done quicker than if cooked in the oven. ~15 pounder usually done in ~1.5 hrs.

              2 Replies
              1. re: Scoutmaster

                Scoutmaster, I read your post with interest. That is because I have been thinking about cooking our turkey this year on the grill, but I have not idea how to do that. Would you mind explaining exactly how you prepare the turkey, how you grill, and for how long, please.

                1. re: Wtg2Retire

                  Wtg, here is a CH thread that has complete instructions for cooking a turkey on the Weber Grill.

                  If you are going to do this, I strongly recommend buying a Weber Grill accessory called charcoal rails. They snap onto the grill and are designed to hold the charcoal on each side of the grill and provide indirect heat which is what you need. You'll need a meat thermometer too.

                  I would also recommend that you brine your turkey before cooking it.

              2. dlgoldie, when dh & I were first married our oven was small and we elected to have the local market prepare the turkey and we used our oven for sides, reheating and warming plates. For the money, time and stress sometimes that's a better option.

                Otherwise, I would consider either making just a turkey breast or cutting a whole turkey into parts.

                1 Reply
                1. re: HillJ

                  I know several people with small kitchens and tiny ovens that do this. A basic turkey is a basic turkey, after all. It allows them to concentrate on the dishes that are unique to and important to their families and traditions.

                2. I have a turkey roaster, the meat cooks quite fast in it. The only thing I do not like about it is the skin does not brown and you have to use a colorant to darken the skin. I have a small kitchen and I find the roaster is convenient. As well you can use for other purposes.

                  6 Replies
                  1. re: Ruthie789

                    That's my problem. It cooks too fast and is essentially steamed. Maybe I'll use my roaster to cook my sides and give my oven over to the bird.

                      1. re: magiesmom

                        I think she means an additional food that helps with browning such as corn syrup.

                        1. re: magiesmom

                          It is called Kitchen Bouquet. It is like a liquid bronzer to put on meat and it looks brown making it look like it was roasted in oven.

                          1. re: Ruthie789

                            Yes. It is more or less just food coloring.

                            1. re: CyndiA

                              Well agree, but did say it was a colorant from the start. I do use the roaster but also put my turkey in the oven towards the end because I do not like to use the product.