Roast Turkey with Garlic, Herbs, and FennelCourse: Dinner, Thanksgiving, Festive, HolidayCuisine: AmericanDifficulty: Intermediate
I have made a lot of turkey’s in my time and this recipe is a standout. It always delivers a succulent bird. It is always moist and has great flavor and the meat is good for days for in a soup. I have used this recipe for 15 + years and have tweaked it to my own. The key is to have a strong meat injector. This allows you to pump the bird full of great flavor. It is best to begin turkey prep the day before.
1 turkey, 12-16 pounds, keep the organs for the stock
Kosher salt and fresh ground pepper
2 heads garlic
2 onions, quartered
2 granny smith apples, quartered
1 bunch of each: Sage, Thyme, Parsley, and Rosemary
2 fennel bulbs, cut into wedges
2 sticks butter
4 cups chicken broth
2 cup dry white wine
3 bay leaves
8 carrots, peeled and trimmed
1 bunch of celery, trimmed
- The day before, remove the turkey from it’s packaging and place the organs in a ziplock bag and place in the refrigerator. Wipe the turkey down and dry it on the inside and out. Place in a disposable container and cover with plastic wrap. Refrigerate overnight.
- Remove the turkey from the refrigerator and pat down again as there will have been a lot of liquid (blood) in the pan. Drain the pan and let the turkey come to room temperature. While the turkey is resting, prepare the roasting pan.
- Preheat the oven to 425. Line the roasting pan, with the carrots and celery. Place about 1 cup white wine in the roasting pan with smashed garlic cloves. Set the turkey on the carrots and celery. Place some herbs, quartered onion and quartered apple in the cavity of the turkey. Add the rest of the onions, apple and fennel around the bird. Set aside.
- Chop up the fresh herbs very fine and melt the 2 sticks of butter. Allow the butter to cool a bit then mix in salt, pepper and minced herbs. Filling a metal meat syringe with the butter herb mixture, and inject the breasts of the bird as well as the legs and thighs. Using what is left to rub the bird all over in the butter herb mixture. If needed tie the legs together with kitchen twine.
- Roast the bird for 30 minutes at 425 then reduce the temperature to 375. After 45 minutes begin to baste the bird every 20 minutes. If more liquid is required, add some chicken broth to the pan. It should take around 3 hours. When the bird registers 165 on a digital thermometer, turn the oven off and leave the bird in the oven with the door closed for an additional 15-20 minutes until the bird registers 170.
- Allow the bird to rest about 20-30 minutes, lightly covered in foil. Serve with gravy or pan juices.