Turkey will always be the centerpiece of the Thanksgiving meal. While there have been variations on the menu from time to time, whether to switch things up or because of a family's heritage, turkey remains the exemplary symbol of the holiday and represents Thanksgiving on the cover of every seasonal magazine, holiday card, or advertisement.
That being said, turkey wasn’t the only protein served that day by the pilgrims —dishes like lobster, deer, and game meats were reportedly in attendance as well — so it's unclear why the bird has taken center stage. There is much conflicting information — some say turkey was served at the first feast and yet others claim turkeys made their way to the American table because of practical and economic reasons.
The fact is, determining the origins of the Thanksgiving turkey will make your head spin. Although there are many different theories as to why it’s included, at the end of the day, all we really care about is how it tastes, right?
So the Cook editors at The Daily Meal decided that instead of trying to define turkey's role in the Thanksgiving meal, we’d celebrate it. To honor turkey in all of its glory, we’re not just covering basic roasted turkey recipes, but are sharing several different recipes for how you can treat the famed bird. From cooking methods to spices and brines, we’ve found 10 different ways to achieve turkey perfection this year. Whether you’re the adventure-seeker who won’t let the Allstate ads scare you away from to deep-frying or someone who just won’t stop searching for the most tender meat, there's a recipe on the list for everyone.