Old Fashioned
Turkey Dinner

While working at a grocery store, a young couple rushed through my line with a frozen turkey—just hours before Thanksgiving dinner—we had a good laugh! To make sure this doesn't happen to you, purchase refrigerated turkey breasts found in the same section as the refrigerated whole turkeys. You may wish to substitute two small turkeys. Check cooking times on the package and adjust accordingly. A 12-pound turkey will also work with the gravy recipe. For stuffing, purchase stuffing and follow the package directions. Just don't overfill the cavity.


    2 (6 ½-pound) turkey breasts
    2 pieces of cheesecloth, cut to fit over each turkey breast
    ¼ cup butter
    Poultry seasoning
    Ground black pepper


    3 ½ cups water
    3 teaspoons chicken base
    ½ cup all-purpose flour
    3 tablespoons cornstarch

1.  Turkey: Preheat the oven to 450

2.  Open turkey in the sink and rinse well. Set both turkey
     breasts in a large oval roasting pan with skin side up.

3.  Melt the butter in a 1-quart saucepan. Place cheesecloth in      
     butter; use two forks to lift it out and spread one piece over
     each turkey breast. This helps to keep the white meat moist.

4.  Place in the oven, then reduce heat to 325
°. Set your timer for    
     2 ½ hours.

5.  Set the pan on the stove top. Carefully remove cheesecloth.
6.  Baste turkey, then sprinkle with poultry seasoning, salt and      
     pepper. Baste with drippings every 15 minutes for 45 minutes
     to an hour. Turkey is done when internal temperature reaches 185

7.  Place turkey breasts on a carving board. Let sit at least 15
     minutes before carving. This gives you time to make gravy.
8.  Gravy: Strain the pan juices into a 2-quart saucepan and set       
     over medium heat. In a medium bowl, whisk water, chicken      
     base, flour and cornstarch. Pour some of the hot liquid into  
     chicken base mixture. Pour back into saucepan and heat,    
     stirring constantly, until thickened. Strain again if needed.
     You can add a tablespoon of butter to make the gravy richer.

9.  Carve the turkey neatly and arrange on a large serving platter.
     Try to keep the slices neat with the skin attached for a great
     presentation. Using a newly sharpened knife helps.

     Hint: Perfectly roasted turkey breast is delicious served with          
     Mashed Potatoes, Candied Yams, Cream Fruit Salad, Green
     beans with Bacon, Cranberry Sauce and Herb Stuffing.
     Makes 12 or more servings and 4 ½ cups gravy