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Juniper-and-Herb Roast Turkey

Jim Henkens; Karen Shinto
Yield Makes 10 to 12 servings
Presalting the turkey adds flavor and helps it stay moist during roasting; so does covering the breast and drumsticks with bacon. Prep and Cook Time: at least 3 hours, plus brining time.


  • 1 free-range organic turkey (12 to 14 lbs.)
  • 3 tablespoons salt
  • 1 teaspoon juniper berries
  • 1 teaspoon brown mustard seeds
  • 1 teaspoon black peppercorns
  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 1/3 cup minced fresh thyme leaves
  • 1/4 cup minced fresh sage leaves
  • 2-in. rosemary sprig, leaves removed and minced
  • 8 slices thick-cut bacon
  • 1 cup dry white wine
  • Pine Nut Gravy

Nutrition Information

  • calories 466
  • caloriesfromfat 33 %
  • protein 73 g
  • fat 17 g
  • satfat 6.2 g
  • carbohydrate 0.3 g
  • fiber 0.1 g
  • sodium 893 mg
  • cholesterol 198 mg

How to Make It

  1. Rinse turkey and pat dry with paper towels. Sprinkle all over with salt, working some under the skin on breast and thighs. Put in a roasting pan, cover with foil or plastic wrap, and chill for at least 24 hours and up to 3 days.

  2. Preheat oven to 400°. Unwrap turkey, discard any juices that have collected in pan, and pat turkey dry. Set aside. In a spice mill or clean coffee grinder, finely grind juniper berries, mustard seeds, and peppercorns. Rub spices all over turkey and set aside. In a small bowl, mix butter, thyme, sage, and rosemary until well combined. Massage mixture all over turkey and place bird in a large stovetop-safe roasting pan. Lay bacon slices over breast and drumsticks. Pour wine and 1/2 cup water into bottom of pan.

  3. Roast turkey 1 hour, turning pan 180° halfway through. Reduce heat to 350° and roast, turning pan every 30 minutes, until a thermometer inserted straight down through the thickest part of breast to bone registers 155°, 1 to 1 1/2 hours.

  4. Transfer turkey to a carving board, loosely cover with foil, and let rest 30 minutes to 1 hour. Pour pan drippings into a glass measuring cup for Pine Nut Gravy, reserving pan to make gravy. Carve turkey and serve with gravy.

  5. Note: Nutritional analysis is per serving.