How and When to Use Turkey Seasoning
Turkey always makes us think of Thanksgiving, but turkey seasoning does not. We typically think our Thanksgiving turkey as a honey roasted turkey, or a honey baked turkey, but we don’t really hear much about seasoning a turkey before we serve it. So, when are seasoning typically used on turkeys?
What is Turkey Seasoning?
Turkey seasoning is usually referring to a combination of herbs and spices that are either rubbed onto a turkey, or are combined with a juice and poured over a turkey before it goes into the oven for cooking. There are some common seasonings that are used for turkeys, but usually seasoning isn’t used when we are just baking the traditional Thanksgiving turkey. However, more and more people are catching onto seasoning their turkeys.
Older cookbooks made mention of some popular herbs that could be used for seasoning, such as sage, savory and even parsley. As more and more cookbooks have been published, recipes have been all about what is simple, and have made things a little easier for those working with a budget, and those short on time welcoming a house full of guests. In fact, many have turned to buying packets at the store, with what is known as “poultry seasoning”. The only challenge that many face when using poultry seasoning, is that it is based on one herb, and doesn’t give the flavorful taste that you many cooks are looking for.
The Most Popular Herbs Used for Seasoning Your Turkey
For those who like to experiment, you can make your own combination of herbs to see what you like best. However, you could go through several turkeys before you figure it out. If you don’t want to wait until Thanksgiving to figure it out, you can try out your combination of seasonings on a few slices of turkey before you put it into the oven. Or, if you haven’t tried poultry seasoning yet, you can try that to see if you actually like it. The typical poultry seasoning usually consists of sage, marjoram, thyme, savory, and rosemary with some crushed pepper, onion powder and salt. When these herbs are used alone, they can give you great rewards, but most people don’t like them when they are all combined together.
Sage is one popular herb in America that has been used for many different recipes and is well loved for its flavor. Sage is in the mint family so it is very similar in appearance, but very different in taste. In fact, it can be grown very easily in your own backyard and then you can have it at your disposal to use it as you cook whenever you wish. It does require a lot of sun, the proper drainage when planted and enough room to grow it. Once the leaves are trimmed, you can take them and rub them over the turkey, and the flavor will begin to adhere to the surface of the turkey. You can also take the leaves and tuck them under the skin of the turkey just before you put it into the oven to bake.
The next most popular herb used for turkey seasoning is Rosemary. Rosemary is used commonly with lamb to give it a nice, mild flavor. Rosemary is also something that you can grow in your own backyard, so that you can have it available whenever you need it. It resembles a miniature pine, but is not to be confused with pine. Rosemary is great alone, or can be used in combination with other herbs.
Poultry seasoning is convenient for those on the go, but if you want to take time to experiment, with the right combination of herbs you could come up with the best turkey seasoning known to man.