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The rub makes this turkey absolutely delicious! The roasting technique comes from Fine Cooking Magazine, issue #60, but the rub is my own. This makes enough rub for a 15 to 20 lb turkey. All the herbs called for are dried, but if you are lucky enough to have fresh, by all means use that - just in larger quantities. No stuffing here, but you can certainly make some on the side.
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- 2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
- 1 tablespoon minced garlic
- 2 teaspoons kosher salt
- 1 teaspoon paprika (I like to use smoked paprika)
- 1⁄2 teaspoon pepper
- 1⁄2 teaspoon dried sage, crumbled
- 1⁄2 teaspoon dried thyme, crumbled
- 1⁄2 teaspoon oregano, crumbled
- 1⁄2 teaspoon basil, crumbled
- 1⁄2 teaspoon rosemary, crumbled
- 1 orange, zest of
- 1 lemon, zest of
- 1 (15 -20 lb) whole turkey (kosher turkeys are great as they're pre-brined and tend to be juicier)
- Heat the oven to 325°F Remove the neck, giblets, and tail (save these for the broth recipe) from the turkey, as well as any plastic parts, like leg connectors. Rinse the turkey well inside and out and pat it dry thoroughly with paper towels. Either stuff now, or bake the stuffing separately. Truss the turkey, if you like. Rub the turkey all over with the rub.
- For the rub: Combine all the rub ingredients together, hold back 1 1/2 tablespoonfuls of the rub, and lovingly massage the rest into your turkey, making sure you get some under the skin to flavour the meat underneath, as well.
- Put the turkey, breast side down, on a V-shaped rack in a roasting pan, preferably a heavy-duty flameproof pan so that you can make the gravy in it later. Roast the turkey (with the legs pointing to the back of the oven if possible) for 1 hour.
- With wads of paper towels in both hands, lift the turkey at the neck and tail ends and flip it breast side up. Carefully rub the rest of your herbs onto the breast. Continue roasting until a thermometer inserted in the thickest part of the thighs reads 170°F, another 2 to 2-1/2 hours (you also have to get a reading of 165F). While the turkey roasts, baste it every 30 minutes or so with pan drippings and rotate the pan occasionally for even browning. Transfer the turkey to a carving board or platter, tent it loosely with foil, and let it rest for 20 to 30 minutes (you can use the juices to make gravy at this point). Remove the trussing strings before carving.