Why not?  Every time I roast a turkey I wonder why people don't just eat them year round.  Think about it - it's a healthy white meat that's affordable and delicious.  For just my husband and and me, I roasted a 4.5 pound breast and was finished with the whole meal in 2 hours from start to finish (and I was on the couch for the vast majority of it).  This is also a great way to practice menu ideas for the big day (just do a little downsizing).  And of course there will be leftovers!
I'm an average turkey cooker but here are my three big tips.  No matter what you do, you can't add any extra moisture to your bird.  Inject it with butter, rub oil under the skin, blah blah, whatever.  Your job is to keep the moisture that's already there...
1) Roast it breast side down for most of the cook and flip it over only when it's 2/3 of the way done.
2) Let it rest.  For God's sake.  LET IT REST.  Bake or roast those sides AFTER it's done to resist carving your beautiful bird too early and losing all that juice.
3) And this is controversial ..don't salt it!  That's right.  You heard me.  Salt dries out meat..  Don't salt it until the end. 
Herb Butter Turkey
Source: Rachel Ray Mag

  • 1 fresh or thawed frozen turkey (about 12 lbs)

  • salt and pepper

  • 1 onion, quartered

  • 10 sprigs parsley

  • 1 lemon, halved

  • 1 cup low-sodium chicken broth

  • 1 4 ounce stick  butter
  1. Position an oven rack in the lower third of the oven and preheat to 300 degrees .  Season the main cavity of the bird with pepper; stuff with the onion pieces and 7 parsley sprigs. Squeeze the lemon all over the skin, then stuff the lemon halves inside the cavity. using kitchen twine, tie the legs together at their ends. Tuck the wings behind the back of the turkey if desired. Place the turkey in the roasting pan. Pour 1 cup chicken broth into the bottom of the pan.
  2. In a small saucepan, melt the butter over medium-low heat, then remove from the heat. Finely chop the leaves from the remaining 3 parsley sprigs. Stir into the butter. using a pastry brush, brush the turkey with the butter. Place the turkey in the oven and roast for 45 minutes. Brush with more butter and roast for an additional 45 minutes. Raise the oven temperature to 350 degrees . Brush the turkey with more butter and continue to roast for about 30 minutes more, until an instant-read thermometer registers 155 degrees when inserted into the thickest part of the thigh without touching the bone. Transfer the turkey to a carving board with a moat and cover loosely with foil. let the turkey rest for 30 minutes before carving to allow the juices to redistribute.

Maple Mashed Sweet Potatoes
Source: Rachel Ray Mag

  • 5 pounds sweet potatoes

  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter

  • 1/2 cup pure maple syrup

  • 1/4 cup milk, warmed

  • salt and pepper
  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees . Pierce each sweet potato several times with a fork and place in a baking pan or on a rimmed baking sheet. Bake until very tender when pierced with a fork, about 1 hour 15 minutes. Remove from the oven and let rest until cool enough to handle, about 20 minutes.
  2. Meanwhile, in a small saucepan, melt the butter over medium heat; stir in the maple syrup. Bring to a boil, then remove from the heat and cover with foil to keep warm.
  3. Whip potatoes with a mixer or mash with potato masher.  Add the butter, s

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