How do I know if it’s done?
Since all roasts are different, cooking times will
vary. Because of that, you’ll need to rely on a meat thermometer to
give you an idea of progress.
Standard meat thermometers have temperature ranges
at which meat is "done" printed on the thermometer itself. Insert this
type of thermometer into the roast before it goes into the oven, just
peek at it periodically, comparing the doneness temperatures on the
thermometer with the roast’s actual internal temperature.
"instant read" models are inserted into the food periodically during
cooking and the temperature is then shown on the dial face or digital
screen. With these thermometers, you need to know at which temperature
meat is done.
No matter which type of thermometer you use, insert
the probe into the thickest part of the meat, avoiding bone (if
present), which will give an inaccurate reading. For chicken and
turkey, insert the thermometer into the thigh—this dark meat area
takes longer to cook than the breast meat.
Keep in mind that once you pull the roast out of the
oven and let it rest before carving, the internal temperature will
rise an additional five to 10 degrees. Factor this into the equation
when the roast is close to being done.
Always let meats and poultry rest for at least 10
minutes after roasting and before carving. During cooking, juices
concentrate at the center of the meat; resting allows them to
redistribute throughout the meat. Early carving causes the juices to
just leak onto the cutting board.
To safely transfer a roasted chicken to a cutting
board, insert a sturdy metal skewer or the handle of a long wooden
spoon through the cavity and use it to lift and move the bird.
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