How to carve a turkey
We give you our expert carving advice to make sure you have a picture perfect finish when serving your Christmas turkey.
By the time the Christmas turkey hits the table, time spent agonising over which bird to choose, how to cook it perfectly - not to mention pulling together a vast medley of trimmings - means you probably just want the thing cut up and on plates sharpish. However, it'd be a shame to put all that hard work to waste with a touch of shabby carving.
We have a really comprehensive foolproof turkey guide to get you started. Once your turkey is well rested and sat on a board, take a sharp carving knife and a carving fork to keep it steady, have your platter to hand and get carving.
Some tips before you start:
Getting the timings right:
Our roast timing tool will help calculate the perfect cooking time for your bird according to weight.Is it ready?
The skewer test: Push a skewer into the thickest part of the thigh, then catch the juices in a spoon or onto a white plate. They should be clear, with no sign of pink. If they are pink, return to the oven for 20 mins, then test again.
The thermometer test: Insert a digital cooking thermometer into the thigh and the thickest part of the breast. If it is cooked all the way through, it should read 73C or higher.
Transferring from the roasting tin
Lifting a turkey isn't always easy, especially when it's oven-hot! We've found that the best way to transfer a cooked turkey from the tin to a platter or board is to put on a pair of thick, clean washing-up gloves and lift it with your hands.
Part one: Carving the brown meat
1. Untie the legs. Steady the turkey with a large fork and cut through the skin that attaches the leg to the body. Gently ease the thigh outwards and press down to expose the hip joint. Cut through this to remove the whole leg from the body.
2. Separate the drumstick and thigh. Halve each leg by slicing between the drumstick and thigh until the knife hits the joint. Twist the knife through it to separate.
3. You can leave the legs and thighs whole or carve them into slices. The easiest way to do this with the drumstick is to hold it up and carve around it. Repeat with the other leg.
Click on to see two ways of carving your turkey breast...