You’ve labored over your Thanksgiving turkey for days, painstakingly brining, roasting, and basting until finally you’ve pulled a beautiful golden-brown bird from your oven. You’ve done everything right so far, but the final step — carving — can turn all your hard work into a scene from a horror film, your gorgeous gobbler shredded into unrecognizable, microscopic pieces of meat.
Carving a turkey doesn’t have to be a dreaded task. It really isn’t that hard as long as you avoid a few common mistakes. Basically, if you can carve a chicken, you can carve a turkey — and if you can’t, you just need a little practice.
Set yourself up for success by arranging your tools. Use a large cutting board, because turkeys are enormous and you don’t want your bird hanging off the board and rocking back-and-forth while you are trying to carve it.
Keep your cutting board from slipping by placing a damp towel or paper towels underneath, and have some extra ready-to-grab towels on the side so you can clean up any running juices.
Now that you know how to start, read on to find out how not to carve a turkey.
Angela Carlos contributed to this story.