Want to celebrate Thanksgiving with a different twist? Try this Paleo Turkey – Puerto Rican Style!
Puerto Ricans celebrate the traditions of their Spanish heritage and commemorate their national heroes with pride, but they have also adopted the US traditions, sometimes giving them a different nuance.
This turkey (“pavo” in spanish) is marinated in the style of the piglet (“lechon” in spanish), the reason why Puerto Ricans call this dish “Pavochón”.
Lu´s Paleo Turkey – Puerto Rican Style Recipe
- 1 turkey (10-14 pounds)
- 10 garlic cloves
- 1/4 cup chopped cilantro
- 10 black peppercorns
- 1 teaspoon annatto seed (achiote) – optional
- 1 1/2 tablespoons dried oregano
- 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 1/2 cup freshly squeezed orange juice
- 3 tablespoons Himalayan or Celtic salt
- 1/2 cup white wine vinegar or apple cider vinegar
- 1/4 cup melted Ghee
- If the turkey is frozen, begin thawing it in the refrigerator or in a cooler kept at 38° F two to three days before cooking.
- Wash the turkey inside and out with 1/2 cup of vinegar diluted in a liter of water. Discard the water. Wash again with 1/4 cup of lemon juice diluted in a liter of water. Pat dry with paper towels.
- Grind all dry/solid ingredients in the mortar or in an electric grinder. Add the liquids and form a paste (move everything to another container if the mortar is too small).
- Season the turkey (at least one-two days before): Rub the turkey with the seasoning paste. Tie the legs together loosely, and tuck the wing tips under. Cover well and keep it in the fridge.
- The day of the cooking: Preheat oven to 325°F
- Stuff the turkey, loosely filling the body cavity. See our delicious Paleo Turkey Stuffing – Puerto Rican Mofongo Recipe here.
- Place turkey (with legs up and tied) in a roasting pan in the oven, medium rack.
- Cook for about 4 hours or until thermometer registers 180°F at the thigh.
- Allow turkey to stand about 30 minutes before carving.
- To prevent the tips of the legs from burning, you can cover them with aluminum foil.
- You can roast until the skin is a light golden color, and then cover loosely with a foil tent to prevent further browning. Remove the foil during the last 45 minutes of baking.
- You can baste every hour with the juices on the bottom of the pan.