Place the turkey onto a carving board and tent with aluminum foil. Place board in a warm spot in your kitchen and let the turkey rest.
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Thanksgiving Turkey, Stuffing, and Gravy
SUBMITTED BY: Unknown
12-14# fresh turkey, heritage birds and broad breasted whites work great. Skip the commodity birds.
1/4 cup salt
1/4 cup sugar
1/2 stick softened sweet butter
1 large Spanish (yellow) onion, diced
3 cups rich turkey or chicken stock
3T sweet butter
8 cups cubed, dry, seasoned bread cubes (bagged stuffing cubes from the supermarket are perfectly OK)
2T fresh minced sage leaves
1 pound fresh chestnuts, in the shell
3 ounces fresh chicken livers, minced (use the turkey liver also, if you have it)
1 cup minced celery
1 cup minced Spanish (yellow) onion
2T melted butter
2T minced parsley
1t fresh thyme leaves
2 days before….brine your bird
Place your turkey in a large pot. Add enough cold water to cover the bird. Remove bird and reserve to a platter for a moment. Dissolve the sugar and salt into the water by gently stirring.
Return bird to the large pot. Refrigerate for 12-16 hours.
Remove bird from the brine and place on a roasting rack fitted into a roasting pan to catch any drips. Allow bird to dry for 24 hours in your refrigerator uncovered.
This will tighten the skin for extra crispy-ness and color.
Remove bird from refrigerator and let rest for 1 hour at room temperature.
While that is going on, place an X mark with a paring knife across the tops of the chestnuts and roast at 350 degrees for 25-30 minutes until cooked through.
Peel and reserve meats, slicing them into quarters as best you can.
Discard the rotten ones, reserving the balance.
Place the sliced onion into the bottom of a clean roasting pan, along with the turkey neck, so that the drippings will land on the onions…. set aside.
Combine the bread cubes, chestnuts and all the other stuffing ingredients in a large mixing bowl.
Season with salt and pepper.
BR>Stuff turkey front and back, pressing firmly.
Place any balance of stuffing in a suitable oven-to-table casserole dish and reserve.
Rub turkey with the soft butter and sprinkle lightly with the paprika.
Tie or skewer legs together.
Place the racked turkey in a 325 degree oven, breast side down if your bird is on the larger side and roast for @ 16 minutes per pound.
Check that the thigh meat has reached a temperature of 160.
To do this, insert a food thermometer into the meatiest part of the thigh and take the temperature. DO NOT TOUCH THE BONE WHEN DOING THIS. When the thighs are at 160 the turkey is done. Let it rest in a warm part of your kitchen, place the baking dish with the spare stuffing into the oven and turn the temperature up to 375. Cover the stuffing loosely with aluminum foil.
Bake for 35-40 minutes while your turkey rests, you make the gravy and carve your bird.
Skim off all the fat in the roasting pan, leaving behind the turkey juices and drippings etc.
Place the roasting pan on a stove top burner, and using medium heat add your stock and bring to a strong simmer.
Scraping back and forth, remove the roasty-toasty bits that stuck to the pan.
You want this liquid to reduce to roughly 2 and ˝ cups.
Now place the flour and butter in a 1quart sauce pan and combine, cooking for several minutes over medium heat to make a cooked roux.
Add the fortified stock, in thirds, that has been simmering in your roasting pan.
Continue simmering until thickened to gravy consistency, and season with the salt and pepper.
Carve your bird and place on a platter.
Pour any juices you accumulate during carving into the gravy pan.
Serve both of the stuffings at the table, passing gravy to those that want some.
A great meal for 6-8 with plenty of leftovers