One turkey many ways, debone your turkey for steak and . . .

Turkey is underrated because it’s overeaten in too short a time. The long roasting can dry the meat. And left over meat isn’t going to produce the best dishes. The solution for me has been to debone the turkey, create a layer of dark and white meat rolled into a log which I slice into steaks and freeze. The steaks cook in three to five minutes, or can be cut up and used in other recipes. In addition to the steaks, boning the bird gives us:

  1. Turkey steaks - 14 deboned turkeyfat for flavouring dishes
  2. two wing drumsticks
  3. sinews for stock, gravy, or soup
  4. white and dark meat
  5. skin as a container, yakitori, cracker
  6. bones for stock, gravy, or soup
  7. giblets for deep fry, stock, or fritters
  8. tail, neck, and/or wing tips for croquett

(Note: 1 – 8 will eventually link to recipes after I’m further though this Zero To Hero challenge. I’m changing my theme daily — so much to learn first — and am working on the best format to present my recipes. Any comments, tips, points to improve — or that you like — are much appreciated.)

Procedure for Turkey Steaks

turkey - 1

1.Debone your turkey. It’s best to remove all of the sinews from the leg and breast meat.

Note: For an extra dish you can separate the wings, or make a drum stick out of it and use the wing tips in another dish.

Whole turkeys reduced to meat and skin.

2. On several sheets of plastic wrap layer the white meat on the right, the dark on the left Bind together with Activa.** The breast may be thicker that the other cuts, either pound it or slice it so the whole is (almost) a uniform thickness. Sprinkle Activa on the surface and roll from White to dark. The Activa will bind the meat together.

Note: For a uniform presentation layer the meat so the fibbers run the same direction. 

Whole turkeys reduced to meat and skin.

4. Wrap the plastic tightly and truss the meat. Put it into the refrigerator overnight.

turkey fillets

5. Slice. I weigh the first slice to use as a measure so each slice is roughly the same weight. I wrap them in wax paper and place them into Ziplock Freezer bags and freeze until I need them.

To cook:

Take a iron skillet and put it on the flame until it’s smoking hot — no oil. Put the steak on and cover for three minutes. Uncover and turn. Cook for two minutes more. Serve. The high temperature sears the meat, locking in juices and preventing sticking to the pan making oil unnecessary.

Note: You can place them frozen on the skillet as well. Cover and cook for five minutes, turn and cook for 3 – 5 minutes. The meat will be a little tough, but it’s a much better option than takeout, a frozen dinner, or junk food.

You can also bread these turkey steaks and fry them as a cutlet, you can layer them in a casserole with stuffing, and they are exceptional with Mole, in fact South American cuisine pairs perfectly with turkey.

The benefits:

Each slice is a balanced between white and dark meat

It cooks quickly.

It is always moist

I can stretch the bird into multiple meals (the bird pictured was enough for 20 individual meals, plus soups, croquettes, etc).

** For more information about Activa/Transglutaminase follow the link. For your reference, Activa is used in restaurants all over the world so that the cuts of meat your enjoy are a uniform size and appearance. In the Molecular movement Activa is used to push the boundaries in food presentation.

10 Comments on “One turkey many ways, debone your turkey for steak and . . .

  1. Pingback: Play with your food! Poultry, oven roasted. | Made by you and I

  2. Pingback: Play with your food! Quenelles with no cream in beef and mushroom soup. | Made by you and I

  3. TURKEY. MY LOVE. Why is everyone so biased against it here? Everyone claims it’s tasteless. I love turkey. 😦

    I’m really intrigued by the trussed turkey steaks, that looks like an awesome idea. I’ll admit I’ve never done any carving on a turkey myself, but I’d be willing to try! I hate when my dad turns small amounts of leftovers into like ten gallons of turkey soup though — he never eats it, and we hate it. Whyyy. This is much more sensible.

    Also — Jacques Pepin is the best on PBS. His shows are on all the time here on our PBS channels, so yay for that! Jacque and Julia together are even better. ;D


    • Right! Jacque and Julia have a palpable chemistry.

      Did you ever watch her two series Baking/Cooking with Master Chefs? I love Julia Child. And Jacques Pepin explains things succinctly so that even my kids can follow.

      And your so right about Turkey. I’l tell you al little secret, if you contact Ajinomoto in your country and request a sample of Activa, they’ll send it for free. shhhhhh The steaks are really worth the little effort.


  4. Really interesting, but a post on how to de-bone a bird for beginners would be handy! How about it?


    • Thanks for the suggestion. I thought about it, but Jacque Pepin has already done the job for us. Did you check out the link to his video?

      I think my next food post is going to be apple quince pie. Speaking of which, I’m going to go cut off a slice. 🙂


  5. I really like the idea of the turkey steaks, and great link to the Jacques Pepin video; I absolutely love him. I agree that turkey is an underrated food, most people in the U.S. only interact with as a cold cut, unless it is Thanksgiving or Christmas.


    • Have you ever tried it Peruvian style? Or with Mole? It’s lovely and so different to what people expect that it might as well be a new meat.

      Thanks for commenting.


      • I don’t think I’ve ever had Peruvian style anything, I’ll have to look into that, I’m always up for learning new cuisines.


      • OMG, you’ve got to investigate South American cuisine.
        My impression, way back when, was any food south of San Diego was Mexican food. It’s so not.
        Think of it as cheep(er) travel. 🙂


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