We asked food stylist Marian Cooper Cairns to share her tricks of the trade when it comes to getting a centerpiece-worthy bird.
Get the Recipe: Herb-Roasted Turkey
Start with a base of green (Marian used late-season muscadine vines from petalsfromthepast.com), and add a pop of color (here, persimmons). Fig leaves or collard greens paired with plums or citrus also work.
Carve Like a Pro
Present the turkey Norman Rockwell-style at the table, but scoot back to the kitchen to carve. Set the turkey on a work surface, and remove the wings, legs, thighs, and breast with a sharp knife. Then carve into elegant slices and arrange on a platter. Take a bow.
Get it Golden
Pat turkey dry with paper towels. Let sit at room temperature for 1 hour to encourage even cooking; then season it. Begin roasting at low heat (325°) to gently cook through; then increase heat (425°) to brown the skin to perfection.
Watch That Bird
Baste with pan juices or melted butter, and rotate the pan to avoid any hot spots in your oven. Shield areas that brown quickly with foil. "Wrap wingtips completely in foil for the best color," says Marian.