The City Magazine Since 1975

Herb-Roasted Turkey

From Michelle Weaver, Charleston Grill {Serves 10}
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2 sticks (1/2 lb.) unsalted butter, softened
2 Tbs. chopped fresh rosemary
2 Tbs. chopped fresh thyme
1/4 cup chopped fresh sage
2 Tbs. kosher salt
2 Tbs. black pepper
1 (14 lb.) fresh turkey
2 lemons, quartered
2 small onions, peeled and quartered

For the gravy:
{Yields 5 1/2 cups}
5 Tbs. unsalted butter
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1 qt. turkey stock or low-sodium chicken stock
1½ cups turkey-pan drippings, fat skimmed off
1 tsp. chopped fresh thyme
1 tsp. chopped fresh sage
1 tsp. chopped fresh rosemary
1 tsp. kosher salt
1½ tsp. cracked black pepper



Preheat oven to 400°F. Remove all racks but one. Set that rack at the lowest position.

Mix the butter, herbs, salt, and pepper into a paste. Set aside.

Clean the turkey and pat dry. Smear butter paste over the outside and inside of the turkey. Stuff the lemons and onions inside. Tuck the wing tips under and tie the legs together with kitchen twine.

Place a roasting rack inside a large roasting pan. Set turkey on roasting rack, breast-side up and uncovered. Place it in the oven and roast for one hour. Using a turkey baster, collect some of the drippings from the roasting pan and baste the turkey with the drippings. Rotate the pan 180 degrees and reduce the heat to 325°F. Continue to roast the turkey until the internal temperature reaches 165°F when testing in the thigh, about two more hours, basting it every half hour and occasionally turning the pan for even browning. Remove turkey from the oven and let it rest for at least 30 minutes before carving.

For the gravy:

Heat the butter in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat. When the butter begins to foam, whisk in the flour. Continue to whisk until the flour is incorporated. Cook for two minutes, whisking as needed to prevent clumping. Slowly whisk in the stock and drippings.

Continue to whisk until the gravy comes to a simmer. Whisk in the herbs. Cook to desired thickness, about 15 minutes. Whisk in the salt and pepper. Pour into a gravy boat and serve.