I remember making this recipe when it came out on the November 1998 issue of Cooking Light and it was a huge success. I decided to change 2 years ago and regretted it. Needless to say I came back to it last year and I will always make it this way from now on. This year I had guests from England and it was their very first Thanksgiving ever. Everyone commented on how tasty and moist the turkey was. The gravy was a big hit too. I will never stray again!
A 5-pound turkey breast gives you the same range of flavorful options as the whole bird - and slices beautifully at the table.
Yield: 12 servings (serving size: 6 ounces turkey and 1/4 cup sauce)
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Amount per serving
- Calories: 305
- Calories from fat: 12%
- Fat: 4.1g
- Saturated fat: 1.3g
- Monounsaturated fat: 0.9g
- Polyunsaturated fat: 1.2g
- Protein: 51g
- Carbohydrate: 12.8g
- Fiber: 0.1g
- Cholesterol: 142mg
- Iron: 3.5mg
- Sodium: 251mg
- Calcium: 54mg
- 1 (12-pound) fresh or frozen whole turkey, thawed
- 2 cups fresh orange juice (about 6 oranges)
- 1 cup water
- 3/4 cup bourbon, divided
- 1/3 cup molasses
- 3/4 teaspoon salt, divided
- 4 oranges, peeled
- Cooking spray
- 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- Orange slices (optional)
- Flat-leaf parsley sprigs (optional)
- Remove giblets and neck from turkey; discard. Rinse turkey thoroughly with cold water; pat dry. Combine orange juice, water, 1/2 cup bourbon, and molasses in a 2-gallon heavy-duty zip-top plastic bag; add turkey. Seal and marinate in refrigerator 4 to 24 hours, turning bag occasionally. Remove turkey from bag, reserving marinade.
- Preheat oven to 350°.
- Tie ends of legs with cord. Lift wing tips up and over back, and tuck under bird. Sprinkle 1/2 teaspoon salt into body cavity. Stuff cavity with oranges. Place turkey on a broiler pan coated with cooking spray or on a rack set in a shallow roasting pan. Insert meat thermometer into meaty part of thigh, making sure not to touch bone. Bake at 350° for 3 hours or until thermometer registers 180°. (Cover turkey loosely with foil if it gets too brown.) Remove turkey from oven. Cover turkey loosely with foil; let stand at least 10 minutes before carving. Discard oranges.
- Pour reserved marinade into a saucepan; bring to a boil. Skim foam from mixture with a slotted spoon; discard. Reduce heat to medium; cook until reduced to 3 1/2 cups (about 15 minutes). Combine 1/4 cup bourbon and flour in a small bowl, stirring well with a whisk. Add to reduced marinade; bring to a boil, and cook 1 minute, stirring constantly. Stir in 1/4 teaspoon salt. Serve sauce with turkey. Garnish with orange slices and parsley sprigs, if desired.
- NOTE: To substitute a 5-pound turkey breast for a 12-pound turkey: Omit the 4 peeled oranges used to stuff the whole turkey; disregard the giblets, neck, legs, and wings. Insert meat thermometer into meaty part of turkey breast, making sure not to touch the breastbone. Bake at 350° for 1 hour and 45 minutes or until thermometer registers 170°. (Cover turkey loosely with foil if it gets too brown.)
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