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The gravy can be started while the turkey roasts. When the turkey is through cooking, finish the gravy with balsamic vinegar and the pan juices.
- 18 lbs turkey, neck and giblets reserved for gravy (16-18-pounds)
- fresh rosemary sprig (optional)
- fresh sage sprig (optional)
- 6 tablespoons butter
- 3 tablespoons chopped fresh rosemary
- 3 tablespoons chopped fresh sage
- 1 1⁄2 tablespoons grated orange peel
- 1 tablespoon ground black pepper
- 4 teaspoons salt
- 5 1⁄2 cups canned low sodium chicken broth (or more)
- 1 onion, quartered
- 1 bay leaf
- 6 tablespoons butter
- 2 large onions, halved, thinly sliced
- 1 tablespoon chopped fresh rosemary
- 1 teaspoon chopped fresh rosemary
- 1 tablespoon chopped fresh sage
- 1 teaspoon chopped fresh sage
- 1⁄3 cup all-purpose flour
- 1⁄2 cup balsamic vinegar
- MAKE TURKEY:.
- Preheat oven to 325°F
- Rinse turkey inside and out; pat dry.
- Place on rack in roasting pan.
- Sprinkle cavities with salt and pepper.
- If not stuffing turkey, place rosemary and sage sprigs in main cavity.
- If stuffing turkey, spoon stuffing loosely into main cavity.
- Melt butter in saucepan.
- Mix in chopped rosemary, sage, orange peel, pepper and salt.
- Brush herb butter over turkey.
- Tuck wing tips under turkey; tie legs together to hold shape.
- Roast turkey 1 hour.
- Baste with pan juices.
- Continue roasting turkey until thermometer inserted into thigh registers 180°F, basting every 20 minutes, about 2 3/4 hours longer if unstuffed or about 3 1/4 hours longer if stuffed.
- MEANWHILE, PREPARE GRAVY:.
- Combine turkey neck and giblets, 5 1/2 cups broth, quartered onion and bay leaf in saucepan.
- Simmer until reduced to 3 cups liquid, skimming occasionally, about 1 hour.
- Strain turkey stock.
- Melt butter in large skillet over medium-high heat.
- Add sliced onions; saute 10 minutes.
- Add 1 tablespoon rosemary and 1 tablespoon sage and saute until onions are golden, about 10 minutes.
- Add flour; stir 1 minute.
- Gradually whisk in turkey stock.
- Boil until gravy thickens, stirring often, about 3 minutes.
- Add 1 teaspoon each rosemary and sage.
- Transfer turkey to platter.
- Tent with foil.
- Pour juices from pan into large glass measuring cup; spoon off fat.
- Add juices to gravy.
- Add vinegar to roasting pan.
- Bring vinegar to simmer over medium heat, scraping up browned bits.
- Pour mixture into heavy small saucepan.
- Boil until reduced to 1/4 cup, about 3 minutes; add to gravy.
- Rewarm gravy; thin with more chicken broth, if desired.
- Season with salt and pepper.