Aromatic Citrus-Sage Stuffed Turkey with Buttery Apple-Onion Gravy
- 14-16 Servings
- 20 mins Prep Time
- 4 hrs Total Time
For the turkey
- 1 14-16 lb. Frozen Whole Turkey, thawed, rinsed and giblets and neck removed and reserved
- 2 large onions, roughly chopped and divided
- 1 apple, roughly chopped
- 2 oranges, 1 ½ quartered and the remaining 1/2 sliced thinly
- 6 sage leaves
- 4 sprigs thyme
- 1 cup water
- Compound butter (see below)
For the compound butter
- 4 tbsp. unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
- ¼ tsp. salt
- ¼ tsp. pepper
- 2 tbsp. fresh chopped parsley
- 1 tbsp. fresh chopped fresh rosemary
- 1 tbsp. fresh thyme leaves
- 1 clove minced garlic
- 1 tbsp. olive oil
For the gravy
- 1 cup water, plus more as needed
- Pan drippings plus apples and onions from roasting pan
- 3-4 tbsp. unsalted butter
- 2 tbsp. cornstarch or arrowroot starch
Step 1Preheat the oven to 325°F.
Step 2Make the compound butter. Add the butter, salt, pepper, parsley, rosemary, thyme and garlic to a small bowl. Use a fork to mash the ingredients together until well combined. Add the olive oil and mix to incorporate. Set aside.
Step 3Add the apples and 1 ½ of the chopped onions to the bottom of a roasting pan. Add the water, then place the rack on top.
Step 4Place the turkey onto the rack, breast side down, then pat dry with a paper towel and season with salt and pepper all over the surface. Flip the turkey over, then pat the breast side dry with a paper towel.
Step 5Use clean hands to gently separate the skin from the meat by inserting your fingers under the skin right above the cavity of the turkey. Place 2 sage leaves and one orange slice under the skin on both the left and right sides of the turkey, then repeat with one sage leaf and one orange slice under the skin on the opposite (tail end) of the turkey so that the entire top of the turkey is stuffed under the skin.
Step 6Next, add the chopped oranges, the remaining onions and the thyme to the inside of the cavity of the turkey.
Step 7Truss the turkey. Cut a long piece of kitchen twine and position the midpoint between the legs. Place one of the turkey legs over the other to create a criss-cross, then tie a tight knot around the ankles. Wrap the twine around about four times then tie another tight knot. Snip the remaining twine with scissors.
Step 8Using clean hands, spread the entire bowl of compound butter over the top of the turkey, including the legs and wings. Gently tuck the tips of the wings under the shoulders to keep them from scorching. Season the turkey with salt and pepper, then place in the oven on the center rack, cooking the turkey for 15 minutes per pound. Use a meat thermometer and remove the turkey at 160°F, then allow the turkey to rest for a minimum of 25 minutes. The internal temperature of the turkey will rise to 165°F as it rests.
Step 9Make the gravy. Remove the turkey and rack from the roasting pan and set aside to rest. Add the giblets, water and pan drippings with the apples and onions to a medium saucepan. Bring the mixture to a boil, reduce to a simmer and allow to cook for about 12-14 minutes then turn off the heat. Use a slotted spoon to remove the turkey heart (the very tough organ from the giblets). For a more pungent gravy, leave the remaining giblets in the gravy mix, or for a milder gravy remove all of the giblets.
Step 10Skim off as much of the oil from the top of the gravy as possible, then add the mixture to a high speed blender with the starch. Blend until smooth, then add the gravy back to the saucepan and heat over medium heat. Add the butter and salt and pepper to taste, then stir for about 3 minutes until the gravy has thickened. For a thinner gravy add a bit more water, one tablespoon at a time, then mix and repeat until it has reached the desired consistency.
Step 11To serve, remove the kitchen twine from the legs, then separate the wings and legs from the turkey body. Separate the back of the turkey from the breasts and slice into ½ inch slices. Serve alongside the gravy and choice of sides.
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