Tremendous free range turkeys are juicy and full of flavour – a world away from dry, flavourless mass-produced birds. Follow our tips below for the best (and easiest) Christmas roast.
- 1 whole organic turkey
- 1 onions
- 1 clementine or orange
- A handful of rosemary
- A handful of thyme
- 1 bay leaf
- 1-2 garlic cloves
- Sea salt and freshly ground pepper
1. Take your turkey out of the fridge and unwrap at least an hour before cooking.
2. Place the bird in a roasting tin, breast-side up. Heat the oven to 220°C/Gas 7. Cut an onion into 4-6 pieces. Put some in the cavity. Halve or quarter an orange or clementine. Pop inside the cavity with a few sprigs of rosemary, thyme and/or bay and a clove or 2 of garlic.
3. Dust with salt and pepper – be generous with the salt as it crisps up the skin, then rub in thoroughly. Put the rest of the onion and some rosemary around the bird. Flip the bird over so it’s breast-side down. (The generous layer of fat on the back drips down and bastes the breasts as it cooks). Do the salt and pepper rub again. Our turkeys are hand plucked and any feather stubs burn away when roasted.
4. Roast for 20-30 mins, till bronzed.
5. Turn the oven down to 170°C/Gas 3 and cook for the following times: • 4kg – 2 hours • 5kg – 2½ hours • 6kg – 3 hours • 7kg – 3 ½ hours • 8kg – 4 hours • 9kg – 4 ½ hours
6. Use your instincts. Ovens differ. Your good judgement doesn’t. If it seems done before time’s up, do the pierce test. Pierce the fattest part of the leg with the tip of a knife. If the juices run clear, it’s done.
7. Carefully flip the bird over to brown the breast. Crank the heat back up to 220°C/Gas
8. Roast for 20 mins, or till the breast is golden.
9. Rest the turkey (and yourself) for at least an hour before carving.