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Here’s a turkey breast fit for your Thanksgiving or Christmas table.
Turkey Breast For The Holidays
Turkey is such a traditional thing to serve during the winter holidays.
Of course, it’s de rigueur for Thanksgiving in the USA. It’s also the more-modern traditional for Christmas in the UK replacing the older traditional goose. My mom used to serve turkey at Thanksgiving as well as Christmas because we just loved it.
Now, if you are not a big fan of dark meat and aren’t serving any who are, then why not consider a turkey breast (aka “crown” in the UK) instead of a whole turkey? For one thing, it’s done faster and this particular one has interesting flavors as well.
Oranges Go With Thyme
Thyme is a natural for poultry. I use it quite often in chicken dishes along with lemon. Citrus works well with poultry too–especially very acidic citrus fruit such as lemon.
But what about oranges? Well, all you have to think about is one of the most famous recipes for duck to get the answer and that would be orange duck. So why shouldn’t it also work with turkey? That question is answered with this recipe and the flavor is delightful.
Just make sure your orange slices are pretty thin, but not so thin that you could read the newspaper through it (as my mother-in-law used to say).
Lift That Skin
The skin on top of a turkey breast is pretty easy to separate from the breast itself. However, you do have to be careful not to poke through the skin.
I have pretty short nails because with all the cooking and washing up that I do, no manicure would survive. But if you have longer, manicured nails, be they natural or the gel kind, the best thing you can do is wear a pair of latex gloves to accomplish the task. Either the ones sold for food service or the good ole Playtex-type ones worn years ago for dishwashing will do.
Also make sure you separate the skin from the cavity all the way up to the wishbone because the thyme butter is going to baste the breast meat and you need to fit three orange slices on each side.
Orange & Thyme Butter Turkey Breast
- 5 lb turkey breast
- 2 tsp fresh thyme chopped
- 2 tbs butter softened
- 1 tbs oil
- 2 small oranges
- Preheat oven to 400F/200C.
- Loosen skin on the top of the turkey breast, making 2 “pockets” being careful not to break the skin.
- Mix the thyme and the butter and spread it on the meat under the skin.
- Slice 6 thin slices off 1 orange and place 3 sliced under the skin on each side of the turkey breast. Cut up remainder of the orange and stuff it in the neck cavity. Slice the other orange in half and place under the bone side of the turkey underneath. Brush the turkey breast with the oil.
- Roast for 1 1/2-2 hours or until juices run clear. If the skin is browning quickly, tent with foil for the remainder of the cooking time.