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Monday, January 18, 2010

Spice Rubbed Roasted Turkey Breast

Frozen turkey breasts were on sale a couple of weeks ago at the grocery store so I picked one up. Even on sale, turkey breast is generally about twice the price of a whole turkey but since we don't really eat the dark meat, its more economical for us. You can easily use this recipe to make a whole turkey though.

While it takes a little prep work and a few hours in the oven, a turkey breast is a great time saver for healthy, weeknight meals. Prepare it on Sunday and you can have a classic Sunday night dinner and package up the leftovers for tacos, chili, salads, etc during the week. Substitute it for what you would normally do with a rotisserie chicken.

Spice Rub:
2 T ground cumin
2 T garlic powder
1 T allspice
1 T chili powder
1 T rosemary
1 T thyme
1 tsp cayenne pepper
1 tsp dry mustard
1 tsp salt
4 T butter, slightly softened

You'll aslo need a lemon, onion, and 2-4 cups of chicken stock.

Mix together all the spices in a small bowl and combine with 4 T softened butter.

To cook turkey breast, thaw in the refrigerator as directed on the package (generally at least 24 hours).

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. I use a roasting pan with a rack but you can also use a regular roasting pan. Rinse turkey with cold water and pat dry with paper towels. Rub all over with spice rub, including inside the cavity. Quarter 1 lemon, squeeze juice over the turkey. Quarter 1/2 an onion and place both onion and lemon wedges in the cavity and the bottom of the pan. Add about 1 cup of chicken stock to the bottom of the pan and add more as necessary to baste while cooking. I cook the turkey breast side down on the rack because I think it results in a juicier turkey, albeit, slightly less pretty but I don't carve it at the table anyway. Cook according to package directions, approximately 15 minutes per pound, basting approximately every 30 minutes. Use a meat thermometer to ensure turkey is cooked to 170 degrees. If skin starts to become too brown, cover with a sheet of foil. Once the temperature is reached, cover with foil and let rest about 15 minutes before carving.

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