A fragrant spice rub infuses the turkey with subtle Middle Eastern flavor.
1 (12-pound) fresh or frozen turkey, thawed
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon grated orange rind
1 tablespoon ground cumin
1 tablespoon honey
2 teaspoons garlic powder
2 teaspoons ground coriander
1 1/4 teaspoons kosher salt, divided
5/8 teaspoon black pepper, divided
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground red pepper
2 medium onions, chopped
2 celery stalks, chopped
2 carrots, chopped
2 cups unsalted chicken stock
3/4 cup dry sherry
1/2 cup orange juice
How to Make It
Preheat oven to 425°.
Remove giblets and neck from turkey; discard liver. Pat turkey dry with paper towels; trim and discard excess fat. Starting at neck cavity, loosen skin from breast and drumsticks by inserting fingers, gently pushing between skin and meat. Combine oil, rind, cumin, honey, garlic powder, coriander, 1 teaspoon salt, 1/2 teaspoon black pepper, ginger, cinnamon, and red pepper, stirring with a whisk. Rub spice mixture under loosened skin and over breast and drumsticks. Lift wing tips up and over back; tuck under turkey. Tie legs together with kitchen string. Place giblets, neck, onions, celery, and carrots in the bottom of a large roasting pan; add stock and sherry to pan. Place roasting rack in pan. Coat rack with cooking spray. Arrange turkey, breast side up, on roasting rack. Bake at 425° for 30 minutes. Cover turkey loosely with foil. Reduce oven temperature to 325° (do not remove turkey from oven). Bake an additional 1 hour and 10 minutes or until a thermometer inserted into meaty part of thigh registers 165°. Remove pan from oven; place turkey on a cutting board. Let stand, covered, for 20 minutes. Carve turkey; discard skin.
Place a zip-top plastic bag inside a 4-cup glass measure. Pour stock mixture through a sieve into bag; discard solids. Let stand 10 minutes. Seal bag; snip off 1 bottom corner of bag. Drain stock mixture into a medium saucepan, stopping before fat layer reaches opening. Add orange juice to pan; bring to a boil. Cook 3 minutes or until slightly thickened. Stir in remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt and remaining 1/8 teaspoon black pepper. Serve sauce with turkey.
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We made this recipe for a small Christmas dinner party, and it was excellent. Instead of a whole turkey, we used a 6 lb. whole turkey breast and made it according to the recipe except for adjusting the cooking time. We served it with Spiced Cranberry Mango Chutney, a celery root puree, and green beans. The meat was moist, and the pan jus was flavorful and not heavy like regular gravy. We will definitely make this again. Husband says, "Best.turkey.period."
Chutney link: http://www.myrecipes.com/recipe/spiced-cranberry-mango-chutney
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