Prep 45 mins
Cook 4 hrs
My new favorite turkey recipe. Easy to make with fantastically tasty results. And the drippings make wonderful gravy! I make this with stuffing inside the bird, so if you're doing that you can omit three garlic cloves, the onion, and one apple. And if you do stuff it, be sure the stuffing gets to 165 degrees, and allow about 15 to 45 more minutes cooking time.
- 1 (12 -14 lb) whole turkey
- fresh ground pepper
- 4 garlic cloves, peeled and halved
- 1 small onion, peeled and cut into wedges
- 1 medium baking apple, cored and cut into wedges
- 2 tablespoons butter, melted
- 6 medium baking apples, cored and cut into eights or 8 small baking apples, cored and cut into eighths
- 2 tablespoons lemon juice
- 2 cups apple cider
- 5 cinnamon sticks, broken into pieces
- 1⁄3 cup butter
- 1⁄3 cup packed brown sugar
- 1 teaspoon dried thyme, crushed
- 1⁄3 cup all-purpose flour
- chicken broth
- Remove neck and giblets from bird. Rinse inside and outside of turkey and pat dry with paper towels. Season body cavity generously with salt and pepper and rub one of the cut garlic cloves on cavity. Place garlic cloves, onion, and the first apple in cavity.
- Pull neck skin to the back and fasten with a skewer. Tuck the drumsticks under the band of skin across the tail, or tie them securely to the tail with kitchen string. Twist wing tips under the back.
- Place turkey, breast side up, on a rack in a shallow roasting pan. Brush the turkey with two tablespoons melted butter and season with additional salt and pepper. Cover turkey loosely with foil and roast in a 325°F oven about 2 1/2 to 3 1/2 hours or until temperature in thigh registers 160°F Cut band of skin or string between drumsticks.
- Toss apple wedges with lemon juice, place around turkey, and cover with foil. Roast 30 minutes more.
- Meanwhile, in a small saucepan, bring apple cider and cinnamon sticks to boiling. Reduce heat and boil steadily about 30 minutes or so or until the cider is reduced to 2/3 cup. Add 1/3 cup butter, brown sugar, and thyme. Heat and stir until the sugar dissolves. Remove and discard cinnamon sticks.
- Remove foil from turkey and brush with cider mixture. Also, drizzle a little cider on apple wedges. Continue roasting, uncovered, until meat thermometer registers 180°F (juices run clear and drumsticks move easily in sockets), basting bird and drizzling apples with cider mixture every ten minutes. And okay, I know there is controversy over when the bird is done, but not dry, so use your own methods. This id the "safe" temperature.
- Remove turkey from oven, discard cavity ingredients. Transfer turkey to large serving platter. Surround with roasted apple wedges. Cover with foil and let stand for 15 or 20 minutes before serving.
- Meanwhile, pour drippings into a large measuring cup. Scrape the browned bits from the pan into the cup. Skim and reserve fat from the drippings. Pour 1/3 cup of the fat into a medium saucepan (you can discard the rest of the fat). Stir in flour. Add enough broth to remaining pan juices to equal 2 1/2 cups; add broth mixture all at once to flour mixture in saucepan. Cook and stir over medium heat until thickened and bubbly; cook and stir one minute more. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
- OR, you can do what I do regarding gravy: I find gravy impossible to make. Don't know why. So I buy 3 or 4 jars of Boston Market turkey gravy, put it in a saucepan, and add my turkey drippings to that. Heat it up and throw it in your good gravy boat and no one will know the difference.