New Apartment, Strange Oven, Christmas Turkey Tips Buenos Aires

I am never bothered about being in a strange country.  I am not bothered about being in a new apartment. However, as a chef, it is absolute hell to find yourself looking at a strange oven!

Not all oven’s are created equal.

Not all ovens deliver thermostatically controlled and evenly distributed heat.

My name is Patzy Paz, I am a private chef. 

Patzy Paz Chef Privada Catering Buenos Aires

Patzy Paz Chef Privada Catering Buenos Aires

I cook lunches, dinners and create parties for clients of Buenos Aires Stay in their apartments since 2007.

At Christmas, I am rushed off my feet and so I provide very special ready-made Christmas tables in a buffet style for clients of Buenos Aires Stay Apartments. 

If you want to order food for the festive season, I prepare and deliver at 14h00-16h00 (2-4pm) on Christmas Eve or before.

If you decide to go it alone in your new apartment to cook your own Christmas fayre, here are some turkey cooking tips for clients in Buenos Aires Stay Apartments.    

Never cook turkey without a thermometer, particularly if its stuffed (stuffed turkeys take longer).  You have various forms of thermometer available in Argentina.  Plastic (pressure heat) thermometers are found in supermarkets and kitchenware shops.  If you do not cook the turkey through, you will not destroy the bacteria.  In addition, overcooked dry turkey breast is the most unpalatable meat you can chew on.

Here are some turkey cooking tips that will avoid a Christmas Table disaster 

  • Partially frozen turkeys will take longer and I suggest buying and defrosting your turkey in the fridge 72-hours before you intend to cook it.
  • A oven cooking or roasting bag will help control heat around the turkey, cook your bird more quickly whilst trapping-in your wonderful seasoning and basting mix, containing moisture.
  • Find the smallest and shallowest black roasting tin possible to ensure the entire turkey gets the benefit of heat circulation. A black roasting tin helps hold, control and distribute constant even heat, avoid the shiny types
  • There’s no need for foil after you cook the turkey 60% of the required cooking time

Make sure your temporary apartment and strange oven cooked Christmas turkey is safe!

Thaw the turkey completely in the refrigerator in it’s own wrapping –  place in a rimmed tray or pan to catch any juices,  it will take about 24 hours in the refrigerator (at 40°) for every 4 to 5 pounds of turkey.

Roast your turkey at an oven temperature of at least 325° or never below gas mark two.

Place the turkey on a rack in a shallow roasting pan about 2 to 2 1/2 inches in depth, breast side up.

Tuck the wing tips back under the back of the turkey and secure the legs with kitchen twine.

Add about 1/2 cup of water to the bottom of the pan. I sometimes add both water and white wine.

A tent made with aluminum foil is helpful to prevent over-browning. Tent the breast portion of the turkey  for around 60% of the cooking time, removing for browning, or place the tent on the bird after the turkey has browned sufficiently.

If you do not get a meat thermometer, cook the stuffing in a separate baking dish.

If stuffing a bird, stuff it loosely and allow more time to reach the correct internal temperature.

The temperature should be checked with a food thermometer. The internal temperature must reach 165° in the breast, or 175° to 180° in the thigh. If the bird is stuffed, be sure the center of the stuffing registers 165°.

Remove the roasted turkey from the oven and let stand for 15 minutes before carving.

Approximate Turkey Cooking Times:


Breast, 4 to 6 pounds ……. 1 1/2 to 2 1/4 hours

Breast, 6 to 8 pounds ……. 2 1/4 to 3 1/4 hours

Whole, 8 to 12 pounds ……. 2 3/4 to 3 hours

Whole, 12 to 14 pounds …… 3 to 3 3/4 hours

Whole, 14 to 18 pounds …… 3 3/4 to 4 1/4 hours

Whole, 18 to 20 pounds …… 4 1/4 to 4 1/2 hours

Whole, 20 to 24 pounds …… 4 1/2 to 5 hours



Whole, 8 to 12 pounds …………… 3 to 3 1/2 hours

Whole, 12 to 14 pounds ………….. 3 1/2 to 4 hours

Whole, 14 to 18 pounds ………….. 4 to 4 1/4 hours

Whole, 18 to 20 pounds ………….. 4 1/4 to 4 3/4 hours

Whole, 20 to 24 pounds ………….. 4 3/4 to 5 1/4 hours

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