I wanted to wait to post this recipe because I wasn't sure it would turn out well, and I didn't want to preserve a stinky recipe for all eternity. I was pretty much guessing at how to do it, and I am very happy to report it actually (through an incredible stroke of luck and timing) exceeded my expectations. It was quite possibly the best turkey I have ever eaten, second only to Alton Brown's Roast Turkey, which will wait for another post (probably sometime in November!)
Here's my recipe for
Crock Pot Turkey Breast
1 Bone-in Turkey Breast (approximately 6.5 lbs.)
2 ribs celery
1 medium onion
1/2 stick butter, room temperature
1/2 tsp. rubbed sage
1/4-1/2 tsp. poultry seasoning, plus additional
freshly ground black pepper
1/2 c. water
1 can cream of chicken soup
Rinse turkey breast; pat dry.
Roughly chop (or tear with your hands) the celery and onion, and place in cavity of turkey.
Loosen skin from turkey by sliding your fingertips underneath it and separating the skin from the membranes attaching it to the breast meat. Be careful not to tear the skin or remove it completely. It is necessary to preserve the flavor and moistness of the bird.
In a small bowl, combine the butter, sage, and poultry seasoning. Using your fingers, slide gobs of the butter between the skin and the meat, pressing from the outside to distribute as evenly as possible.
Place turkey skin side up in the crock pot. Season the skin with sea salt and black pepper, then spread the soup over the entire surface of the turkey. Season with poultry seasoning. Note: the soup doesn't really add much to the drippings, but spread over the skin and exposed meat, it keeps everything moist and flavorful. Pour the water into the bottom of the crock, careful not to disturb the soup on the turkey.
Cover crock, and cook for 1 hour on high. Reduce heat to low, and cook for 5 hrs. The turkey is done when an instant-read thermometer inserted in the thickest part of the breast reads 161 degrees. (I started the turkey at 6:30 this morning, switched it to low when I left for church at 7:30, and it was exactly at 160 degrees when we returned home at 12:30--perfectly juicy and wonderful.)
Drippings from pot (remove large solid bits, like the onion and celery, of course)
2 c. water
1 tsp. poultry seasoning
salt and pepper to taste
3 Tbsp. corn starch
3 Tbsp. water
Skim off as much fat from the drippings as possible, and combine with the water in a medium-sized saucepan. Add seasonings. Bring broth mixture to a boil.
In a small bowl, thoroughly combine corn starch and water. Remove pan from the heat momentarily; add the corn starch slurry and whisk to combine. Return to heat, and bring to a boil, stirring constantly. Boil and stir for at least 1 minute. Makes approximately 4 cups of gravy.
This afternoon, I served slice turkey and gravy over kluski noodles seasoned with a bit of butter, onion powder, garlic powder, and celery salt. Of course, you could always serve it with mashed potatoes or stuffing for a more Thanksgiving-y experience!