This more complicated holiday turkey recipe adds great dimensions and flavor to your celebration. Make the stock the night before to save time. Outstanding!
Roast Turkey with Corn Bread Stuffing II
Author: Epicurus.com Kitchens
Recipe type: Main Course
- 1/4 pound butter
- 1 turkey, fresh (12-16 pounds)
- 1/2 pound salt pork, thinly sliced
Corn Bread Stuffing:
- 2 packages corn bread mix (10 ounces, each)
- 1/2 Cup celery, chopped
- 1 onion, medium, minced
- 1/2 Cup butter
- 2 egg yolks
- turkey giblets, plus neck and wings
- 3 Cups water
- 1/2 onion, small, sliced
- 1/2 garlic clove
- 1/2 bay leaf
- 1/8 teaspoon basil, crumbled
- 1/8 teaspoon rosemary, crumbled
- 1/8 teaspoon thyme, crumbled
- 1/8 teaspoon salt
Turkey Giblet Gravy:
- 1/4 Cup pan drippings
- 1/4 Cup flour
- 1 Cup water
- 2 Cups turkey stock
- turkey giblets, cooked, chopped
- pepper, to taste
- Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.
- Cut butter into very thin slices; place in freezer to harden while you prepare bird.
- Wash turkey inside and out. Remove and reserve neck, giblets and wing tips. Pat dry with paper toweling. Starting at the breast, separate the skin from the meat by working your fingers between them. Slice 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. Insert slices of the cold butter, first under the leg skin, then under the breast skin. Reshape the loosened skin on the bird by patting it gently back in place. It will sag a bit but don't let that upset you; it will cook back in place. Wrap bird loosely in waxed paper and refrigerate while preparing stuffing.
- Fill cavity of turkey loosely with stuffing. (Place any remaining stuffing in a shallow baking dish and place in oven about 30 minutes before bird is roasted. Bake until firm and lightly browned.) Fasten neck skin of turkey to body with skewer. Push legs under band of skin at tail or tie to tail. Place slices of salt pork over breast and fasten with wooden picks. 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 15 minutes longer.
- 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 3-1/2 to 4 hours, or until juices run yellow - no longer pink - when thigh is pierced with a fork. Roast turkey breast side up for the last 15 minutes of cooking time. (Remove and discard salt pork when crisp and most of fat has been rendered. If fat in pan begins to burn, add a few tablespoons of water.) Transfer turkey to serving platter and let rest 30 minutes before carving. Reserve all drippings in pan for gravy.
CORN BREAD STUFFING
- Prepare corn bread, following label directions, or use your own favorite recipe. Cool. Crumble enough to make 7 cups and transfer to a large mixing bowl.
- Saute celery and onion in butter in a large skillet until soft. Spoon vegetables and butter over corn bread crumbs.
- Beat egg yolks in a medium-sized bowl; stir in stock and pour mixture over corn bread. Stir lightly to blend. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Makes approximately 3 quarts, or 12 cups.
- Combine giblets, neck, and wing tips with water in a large saucepan; add remaining ingredients. Bring to boil, then lower heat and simmer for about 15 minutes, or until liver is tender. Remove liver and continue to simmer mixture for about 1 hour, or until remaining giblets are tender. Strain mixture; remove and chop giblets and liver for gravy. Reserve stock.
TURKEY GIBLET GRAVY
- Pour off all turkey fat from roasting pan into a glass measuring cup. Measure and return 1/4 cup to pan. Sprinkle 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. Strain gravy into saucepan; add chopped giblets and reserved liver. Taste; season with salt and pepper if needed.
An ideal turkey for any holiday, especially Christmas or Thanksgiving.