• Rock Rousseau

Bacon & Beer-Basted Turkey Breast

Say hello to your new Thanksgiving favorite! Prepare this roasted turkey breast while you take care of any other holiday tasks; the bacon, beer, and butter herb rub will add amazing flavor and color to your centerpiece. What could be better before watching football? Everyone will be thankful you didn't invest the time and money on a dry over-sized turkey filled with bones. You owe it to yourself and your family this Thanksgiving- they will love this!

This recipe does require brining which will enhance the moist texture of the turkey breast. 

  • One 8-10 pound boneless turkey breast (I recommend grass-fed turkey raised under organic conditions which offer higher nutrition and are superior to turkeys given antibiotics)

(Vegans: slice a 4 cup casserole mixed with Autumn-colored veggies like baby carrots, sweet potatoes, cauliflower, red and yellow peppers, celery, and baby corn)

  • 6 slices thick-cut bacon (Vegans: omit)

  • 1 bottle of dark stout beer​ or preferred gluten-free beer

  • 1 large sweet Vidalia onion, cut in half

  • 2 cups of Chicken stock, unsalted (Vegans: use Vegetable Broth)

  • 1/4 cup of preferred flour (optional, to make gravy)

For Herb Butter Rub:

  • 2 TBSN of minced garlic

  • 2 TBSN of dried or freshly-chopped rosemary

  • 2 TBSN of smoked paprika 

  • 2 TBSN of dried or freshly-chopped sage

  • 1 TBSN of dried or freshly-chopped parsley

  • 1 TBSN of dried or freshly-chopped thyme

  • 1 teaspoon of salt

  • 1 teaspoon of freshly ground black pepper 

  • 1/4 cup (1 stick) preferred butter, softened

Medium mixing bowl, mixing spoon, measuring spoons, aluminum foil, measuring cups, large roasting pan, baster, instant-read thermometer, sharp carving knife 

Prep: Brine overnight, Marinate 6-12 hours, 30 minutes prep

Cook: 60-75 minutes in oven   Ready: 15 minutes after cooking

Serves: 6-8

Before you handle any food, wash your hands thoroughly with soap and water. Clean your kitchen work area and pull back your hair or wear a cap. You want to avoid contaminating your meal with harmful bacteria that could cause food illness.  

To make Bacon & Beer-Basted Turkey Breast:

1. Brine turkey breast overnight. See post for DIY How to Brine Chicken and Turkey

2. Rinse the turkey breast and pat dry. Cut off any excess skin. 

3. Lay out a sheet of aluminum foil large enough to cover the entire turkey breast

4. Stir garlic, onion powder, parsley, sage, salt, pepper, rosemary, paprika, and thyme in a bowl until thoroughly combined.

5. Stir in softened butter and mix thoroughly to form wet herb butter rub.

6. Use silicone spatula to evenly spread the herb paste all over to coat the outside of the turkey breast. 

TIP: if you like to add turkey legs, double the herb recipe. Coat turkey legs with herb paste and cook alongside turkey breast. 

7. Wrap 6 slices of bacon around top of turkey breast leaving an even amount of space between each slice. 

8. Roll and wrap tightly in the tin foil and refrigerate 6 to 12 hours. 

TIP: if refrigerated, let turkey breast sit in room temperature for 30 minutes prior to cooking. 

9. Preheat oven to 450 degrees F. 

10. Remove outer skin of the large Vidalia onion and cut it in half. 

11. Place onion halves at the bottom of roasting pan, cut side up. These will serve as risers to keep turkey from being submerged into the chicken stock, as well as flavor the stock for gravy. 

TIP: if there is any remaining herb rub, add this to the chicken stock mixture. 

12. Pour chicken stock and beer into roasting pan. 

13. Remove turkey breast from the foil and rest on top of the onion halves. 

14. Bake for 60-75 minutes. The secret to cooking poultry is higher heat- less time. Slow cooking poultry on lower heat will dry out your turkey meat; Even in a slow cooker.  Baking at a higher temperature for shorter time will result in a more moist inner meat and crisper outer skin. 

15. Every 20 minutes, baste turkey with the chicken and beer mixture to keep the turkey moist.

16. An instant-read meat thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the breast, not touching bone, should read at least 165 degrees F. 

17. Allow turkey to sit, covered in foil for 15 minutes.

18. Remove bacon strips, then carve turkey into 1/2 inch slices. 

To create a roux from remaining stock and beer mixture:

Also referred to as "gravy' for your turkey, a roux is when flour and fat are cooked together to make a thick sauce.

1. Reserve 2 cups of remaining stock into a medium sized pot, squishing the onion and other residual ingredients to extract all the flavor.

2. Set on Medium-High heat until it comes to a boil for three minutes.

3. Lower heat to simmer.

4. In a measuring cup, mix 1/4 cup of preferred flour with 1/4 cup cold water until it forms a paste. 

5. Slowly pour flour mixture into the stock, using a whisk or hand blender to mix and blend ingredients until smooth. 

6. Simmer and stir until you reach preferred consistency. 

7. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Serve warm with turkey.