Put Down That Turkey Baster! You’re Apparently Wasting Your Time
To baste, or not to baste, that wasn't even a question in our family (when I was a kid). Basting the Thanksgiving turkey was a tradition and not just because the brushing and/or squirting (with the turkey baster) of the big fowl was to magically impart juiciness and a brown crispy skin. It was also a crucial part of the big day's proceedings.
Every time the oven door opened for Mom to baste the main event, we'd rush to see how it was looking and smelling. This most likely occurred after our first leisurely nap of the day; lulled into slumber by our traditional Thanksgiving day breakfast of hot homemade brioche slathered with butter and my dad's homemade eggnog.
This amazing concoction of fresh eggs (pre-Salmonella scare days) heavy cream, espresso coffee, sugar, spices and heavily laden with Marsala wine is a holiday staple (from Thanksgiving through New Year's Day) in our family to this day.
Now those Butterball Turkey Talk Line geniuses have thrown a proverbial drumstick into the tradition-works by informing the world that basting your turkey is like "throwing water on a raincoat"! They indicate that basting a turkey is completely unnecessary!
They also say that you're interrupting the cooking time with basting, as your oven needs to re-heat and bring itself back up to the correct temperature every time you open the door.
I will accept the "raincoat" premise. After all, I grill turkeys and turkey breasts on my charcoal grill all the time and never baste them. But then I do have a question- -what is the freakin' turkey baster for and why is it called a turkey baster??!!!!
Fie on you Butterball smarty-pants scientists! The next thing you'll tell us is that watching the Macy's Day Parade is hazardous to your health!