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    You are in: Home / Recipes / White House Thyme-Roasted Turkey Recipe
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    White House Thyme-Roasted Turkey

    Total Time:

    Prep Time:

    Cook Time:

    16 hrs

    13 hrs

    3 hrs

    Buster's friend's Note:

    The Washington Post, November 14, 2012 Adapted from White House executive chef Cristeta Comerford. Tested by Jane Touzalin for The Washington Post. "White House executive chef Cristeta Comerford puts the thyme in the brine rather than on the bird because, she says, the leaves would burn in the oven during roasting." FTR - I never have had herbs burn but I rub them under the skin... just saying. Also do NOT do this recipe with a bird injected with "flavor enhancing" "broth" - it will be rubbery and way over salted.

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    Units: US | Metric

    For the brine

    For the turkey


    1. 1
      For the brine: Heat the water, thyme, garlic, peppercorns, bay leaves, salt and brown sugar in a large saucepan over medium-high heat, stirring frequently, until the salt and sugar dissolve. Transfer to a clean 5-gallon bucket. Add enough ice to total 3 gallons of liquid, and mix until incorporated. Add the turkey to the bucket and transfer to the refrigerator for at least 12 hours. (Alternatively, place the turkey in a large brining bag and fill with enough of the brine to cover the turkey; seal the bag and refrigerate. Or place the bird and brine in a cooler, cover and add ice bags periodically to keep the temperature of the brine below 40 degrees.).
    2. 2
      For the turkey: Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. Have ready a large roasting pan with a rack.
    3. 3
      Remove the turkey from the brining liquid and use paper towels to pat it as dry as possible, inside and out. Rub the turkey with the butter all over, including the cavity, and sprinkle with the salt and pepper. Fold the wingtips underneath the turkey.
    4. 4
      Place the turkey in the roasting pan, breast side up. Tie the legs together with kitchen twine and fold the neck flap under.
    5. 5
      Roast the turkey for 1 hour to brown it, then reduce the temperature to 325 degrees and cook for 90 minutes to 2 hours or until a thermometer inserted in the thickest part of the thigh registers 165 degrees.
    6. 6
      Let the turkey rest at room temperature for 30 minutes before carving. Use the pan drippings for gravy, if desired.

    Ratings & Reviews:


    Nutritional Facts for White House Thyme-Roasted Turkey

    Serving Size: 1 (736 g)

    Servings Per Recipe: 16

    Amount Per Serving
    % Daily Value
    Calories 897.0
    Calories from Fat 404
    Total Fat 44.8 g
    Saturated Fat 16.6 g
    Cholesterol 312.7 mg
    Sodium 7653.0 mg
    Total Carbohydrate 33.0 g
    Dietary Fiber 0.4 g
    Sugars 27.6 g
    Protein 85.9 g

    The following items or measurements are not included:

    fresh thyme

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