Thursday, November 24, 2011

Butterflied Cuban Turkey

 Done! I preheated the oven to 350F and placed the turkey in the center rack covered with aluminum foil. It was done in about 3 hours at which time I removed the foil and let it brown for about 30 minutes. Below is post from Monday.

So I've defrosted my turkey. Last year I made two turkeys: one butterflied with herbs, and one whole with Cuban mojo (marinade). Turns out everyone liked the butterflied one but the mojo of the Cuban one. So this year I'm making a butterflied Cuban turkey.

To butterfly a turkey you need to remove the back. This I achieved with great care and a bit of frustration. You need to cut along either side of the thick bony back where the thinner ribs connect. I will post a picture. Don't freak out.... LOL

Then you turn your turkey breast side up and press down with the heal of your hand to break the breast bone. This was not easy. Although I used my "man-hand," I didn't get it as flat as I had wished.

My advice, if you want a butterflied turkey, buy a fresh one and have your butcher do it for you.

Save the backbone along with the neck and gizzards for stock.

Now, for the mojo.  This is a 12 lb turkey. I used:

2 heads of garlic, pressed
1 tbsp salt
1 tbsp dried oregano
1 cup orange juice
1 cup lime juice

Pretty simple.  (Note: you don't need to do this so far in advance, 24 hours is sufficient.)

I'll be roasting this on Thanksgiving. I will preheat the oven to 350. I will cover the turkey with aluminum foil and cook for several hours. The butterflied turkey requires a bit less time

Click here for useful information on oven baking times for roasting a turkey.


  1. That looks SOoOOOooooooooooOOOOOOOOOO good, I made Lechon yesterday with moros, boiled yuca and yellow plantain with lots of Mojo and for dessert arroz con leche. That was my "Thanksgiving Pre-party" ha ha. Tonight though I'm going to my brother in laws house, their family is Salvadorian so gonna stuff myself with "Pan Con Pavo" and "pupusas" and whatever else :)

  2. Hey Nathan. Hope your Thanksgiving weekend was awesome! Sounds like you had plenty of yummy food to eat. :)

  3. Ivonne this look amazing! I just love the looks of your turkey and can just imagine how good it was with the mojo marinade. That's the only way my daughter would eat salmon when she was little was with Cuban mojo!

    Hope you had a great Thanksgiving!

  4. I have to admit Lyndsey that it didn't last long. It was all consumed by Friday. Thanks for stopping by, always glad to hear from you!