Preparing a meal for your family can seem like a daunting job. Especially if you’ve decided to roast a whole Thanksgiving turkey. The roast always seems like the hardest part of any Thanksgiving or Christmas dinner. But it doesn’t have to be! Here is a simple yet delicious recipe for the whole family to enjoy. It’s easy and anyone can make it! Your guests will be amazed by this juicy turkey roast full of amazing flavours.”
10-11 lbs / 4.5-5 kg free-range turkey, (rinsed, dried, oven-ready)
100 g softened butter
2 tbsp tarragon, chopped
1 tbsp thyme chopped
2 garlic cloves
1 large onion
150 ml white wine (preferably dry)
Take the Thanksgiving turkey out of your fridge at least an hour before you start cooking. This way you allow it to come to room temperature and will avoid any problems in the oven, like uneven cooking.
Before wiping your Thanksgiving turkey clean inside and out, you should remove any giblets from the bird (you can save these up for later, if you are making stock). You can simply use kitchen paper to clean it. Don’t forget to preheat your oven!
Grate the zest from the lemon and crush the garlic. Mix the lemon zest, tarragon, thyme and garlic together into the butter and add salt and black pepper to your taste.
Carefully push your fingers between the skin and flesh on the breast starting at the neck of your turkey. Gently loosen the skin, do not tear it. Ease the skin away from the bird’s breast and the top of the drumsticks.
Push the butter mixture under the skin and spread it over the flesh. Smooth the skin back over after you’re done. If you’re not able to reach all the way down to the drumsticks, ease the butter along by smoothing and pushing it through the skin.
Cut the orange and onion into quarters and tuck into the turkey’s cavity along with the sage.
If you prefer stuffing the turkey instead, you can now add your stuffing at the neck-end. Use a skewer to secure the skin.
Place the turkey in a roasting tin. Pour the wine into the cavity of the bird. Cover its top loosely with a layer of foil.
To calculate your perfect roasting time, weigh the turkey: 25 minutes for every 1 lb (40 minutes for every 1 kg). Place the tin in the middle of the oven and cook for approx. 20 minutes before reducing the temperature to 355°F /180°C (fan: 320°F/160°C).
Remove the foil for the last 30 minutes of cooking. Check if the turkey is ready: Use a skewer to poke the thickest part of the bird’s thigh. If its juices run clear, it’s cooked. If they are a pinkish colour, it is undercooked and you have to return it to the oven for another 15 minutes. Do this test again until it is ready.
Remove the turkey from your oven, and transfer it onto a warm serving plate. Let it rest, covered loosely with foil, for about 30 to 40 minutes before carving. Meanwhile, you can use the warm oven to cook your vegetables.
Serve the turkey decorated with lemons and herbs.
Tips and Suggestions
If you are using a meat thermometer to see if the roast is ready, it should read 175°F/80°C at the thighs, and 165°F/75°C at the breast.
For that extra zesty flavour, you can place lemon slices on the turkey when you put it in the oven. (But don’t let them burn!)
If tarragon is not really to your taste, we recommend using fresh parsley instead.
Cooking time: Preparation 20 mins.
Cooking: 3 hrs 30 mins – 4 hours. (Cook time depends on size: 25 minutes for every 1 lb / 40 minutes for every 1 kg)
30-40 mins for resting.
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