*Fresh cider will turn hard if left unrefrigerated for 2 to 3 days.
Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F., or as specified by your recipe. Move the oven rack to the lowest position.
Remove the whole turkey from the refrigerator about one hour before cooking (no more than that!) To bring the bird to room temeprature. You can use this time to cook the giblets or neck for the stuffing, stock or gravy.
Remove the giblets from the bag (stuck in the neck cavity) and the neckbone from the body cavity and rinse them under cool running water. This will help to remove bacteria. Pat dry with paper towels and set aside for use in the stuffing or stock, if desired.
Rinse the whole bird, including the body and neck cavities, under cool running water. Rub your hands over the surface to help remove any bacteria. Pull out any lumps of fat from the cavity and discard. Pat dry with paper towels; salt and pepper the inside and outside of the bird, and rub in any seasonings per your recipe.
Roast according to timetable for the size of your bird and method desired (open pan or roaster). Note: Opening the oven to "check on the turkey" will lengthen roasting time. Basting can be done during the last 30 minutes of roasting, after the foil tent or roaster lid has been removed to allow the bird to brown.