Turkey Carving Tips with Fairway Ray

Ray Venezia is a master butcher and expert meat carver.  You could say, he knows meat.  His day job is manager of the meat department of Fairway Market's NY and NJ locations, but his other job...is to make YOU the star of your Thanksgiving feast.  Ray has been doing the talk and news show circuit for a number of years sharing his expert tips for effective turkey carving and I was lucky enough to get a lesson from Ray himself at the new Fairway location in Paramus.  Catch the video and tips below. Feel free to print or "share" with the turkey carver in your family.

Ray's Tips:

#1: Buy a turkey that is 5-7lbs more than the number of guests. Purchase as early as possible to prevent getting a turkey that has been handled by customers.

#2: You don't need fancy carving knives. Expensive knives tend to thin out over time making it harder to sharpen.  If you spend over $10, you've spent too much!

#3: When it's time to cook the turkey, cook at 400 degrees for first 30-45mins and then drop the temperature to 350. In the last half hour, add your onions, celery, carrots, etc to they'll be roasted instead of slimy.

#4: When you finish cooking the turkey, let it sit for 15-20 minutes so it can absorb back the juices it lost in the oven. And DON'T poke it with a fork-that will cause more juice to leak out.

#5: Cut off the legs (dark meat) first while the breast is still cooling. Always cut ALONG the bone instead of trying to cut THROUGH it. When you see the white joint, that's where you separate.

#6: Remove the other leg and reposition the breast so it is level on your cutting board.  Score your knife along the bone and gently pull the meat away with your hand (the meat should be warm after sitting out).

#7: When cutting the breast meat, cut AGAINST the grain making a CRISS-CROSS pattern. This shortens the fibers of the meat and makes it easier to chew through and enjoy.  Cut your meat into 1/4" slices instead of deli thin to prevent air from drying out the meat.

#8: Assemble your meat with the legs around the edge of your platter and the white/breast meat in the middle.

#9: Prepare to WOW your family with your expert turkey carving technique!

Learn more about Fairway Market at www.FairwayMarket.com and visit Fairway Paramus at The Fashion Center off of Rt 17.

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