Here is what I did for a simple turkey. It comes out great every time. No need for fancy wet brine techniques or expensive appliances or homemade deathtrap cookery (I'm looking at you, turkey fryer pots on propane burners). Just turkey in a roasting pan, in an oven.
Turkey of your choice, thawed (seasoning quantities are for about a 12 lb bird). Remove giblets and set aside for turkey stock
Seasoning mix (Apply to thawed turkey, inside and out, about 12 hours before cooking and put back in fridge)
Brush olive oil over whole turkey
2 Tbsp Salt
1 Tbsp poultry seasoning
2 tsp paprika
1 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp onion powder
What to stuff in / place around turkey (Right before putting in the oven)
2 lemons, quartered
8 baby carrots (or large carrots chopped up)
1 large onion, in eighths
2 sprigs rosemary
2 sprigs sage
6 sprigs thyme
Another drizzle of olive oil
Let turkey come to room temperature (about 1 hour) before cooking. Cover with aluminum foil. While this is happening, preheat oven to 350 degrees. Pour about 2 cups of water into the bottom of the roasting pan, so that the drippings don't burn (we'll use them for gravy while the turkey rests). Roast turkey about 15 min per pound (right around 3 hours for a 12 lb bird), or until internal temperature of the coolest part reaches about 155 degrees. Keep checking periodically to make sure the bottom of the roasting pan still has liquid, if it runs low add more water. Turn oven to 425 and remove foil. Roast for an additional 15-30 minutes until skin is golden brown and internal temperature is at least 160 degrees (it will come up to 165 during resting time but if you're concerned about food safety cook until its 165 in the oven). Remove from oven and let rest, tented with foil, at least 30 minutes (45-1 hour is better) before carving.
Carve that bad boy up, separating white and dark meat (the debate about which is better can be found below).
I found "poultry blend" herbs in the produce section of my local grocery store. Easiest way of buying all the herbs you need all in 1 package!
Sorry I forgot to take a picture of the done turkey before carving, I was busy making gravy (check out my next post to see that one!).
Dark meat is obviously superior so we ate all of that at the dinner or in sandwiches the next day. The white meat was primarily used for turkey soup that I made a few days later. With that in mind, DO NOT THROW AWAY THE BONES AFTER CARVING!!! Homemade turkey broth is the bees knees.