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Roast Turkey for Thanksgiving

For a traditional and flavorful turkey this Thanksgiving, make this recipe which will awaken your taste buds and please your family and friends. As the centerpiece of the meal, this roast turkey will not disappoint.

Notes


Check out more recipes just like this one in a collection of 8 Sensational Thanksgiving Turkey Recipes.

Ingredients

  • 1/4 pound plus 1/2 cup margarine
  • 1 turkey, 12-16 pounds
  • 1/2 pound thinly sliced lightly salted pork
  • 10 ounces 2 packages, low-fat corn bread mix
  • 1/2 cup chopped celery
  • 1 minced onion
  • 2 egg yolks
  • pepper to taste
  • Turkey giblets
  • 4 cups luke-warm water
  • 1/2 sliced onion
  • 1/2 garlic clove
  • 1/2 bay leaf
  • 1/8 teaspoon basil
  • 1/8 teaspoon rosemary
  • 1/8 teaspoon thyme
  • 1/4 cup grease from pan
  • 1/4 cup whole wheat flour
  • 2 cups low sodium turkey stock

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 450 degrees F. Cut 1/4 pound margarine into very thin slices; place in freezer to harden.
     
  2. Wash turkey inside and out. Remove and reserve giblets. Pat dry with paper toweling. Starting at the breast, separate the skin from the meat by working your fingers between them. Slide your hand under skin as far as you can go and gently free the skin on both sides of the breast. Loosen it around the upper part of the legs, stopping about halfway down the legs.
     
  3. Under the leg skin and the breast skin, insert slices of the cold margarine. Reshape the loosened skin on the bird by patting it gently back in place. It will sag a bit but  will cook back in place. Wrap bird loosely in waxed paper and refrigerate. Now you can begin preparing the stuffing.
     
  4. Follow your favorite cornbread recipe. Cool. Crumble enough cornbread to make 7 cups and transfer to a mixing bowl.
     
  5. Saute celery and onion in remaining margarine in a large skillet until soft. Spoon vegetables and butter over corn bread crumbs. Beat egg yolks in a medium-sized bowl; stir in low sodium stock and pour mixture over corn bread. Blend by stirring lightly. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
     
  6. Fill cavity of turkey loosely with stuffing. Place any remaining stuffing in a shallow baking dish and place in oven before bird is roasted (about 30 minutes). Bake lightly browned and firm. Fasten neck skin of turkey to body with skewer. Push legs under band of skin at tail. Place slices of pork over breast and fasten with wooden picks.
     
  7. Place turkey on its side on rack in shallow open roasting pan. Cook for 15 minutes, then turn bird on other side and roast for and additional 15 minutes.
     
  8. Lower temperature to 325 degrees F. and continue to roast turkey, turning the bird from side to side and basting often with the drippings from pan, for about , or until juices run yellow, no longer pink, when thigh is pierced with a fork (3 and a half to 4 hours). Roast turkey breast side up for the last 15 minutes of cooking time.
     
  9. Remove and discard pork when crisp and most of fat has come off. If fat in pan begins to burn, add a few tablespoons of water.
     
  10. Transfer turkey to serving platter and let rest for a half hour before carving. Reserve all drippings in pan for gravy.
     
  11. Combine giblets with 1 cup water in a large saucepan; add remaining ingredients. Bring to boil, then lower heat and simmer until liver is tender (about 15 minutes). Remove liver and continue to simmer mixture for about 60 minutes or until remaining giblets are tender.
     
  12. Strain mixture; remove and chop giblets and liver for gravy. Save stock. Pour off all turkey fat from roasting pan into a glass measuring cup. Measure and return 1/4 cup to pan. Sprinkle whole wheat flour into fat; cook and stir 2 or 3 minutes over low heat. Add water and 2 cups of the reserved turkey stock. Cook, stirring and scraping up browned bits in pan with wooden spoon, until gravy thickens and bubbles 2 minutes.
     
  13. Strain gravy into saucepan; add chopped giblets and reserved liver. Taste; if needed, season with salt and pepper.

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