Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Rosemary and Lemon Roasted Turkey

It was my brother's birthday a few days ago and so I decided to make a nice dinner for his special day. My mom was in town and she helped which was super nice! I wanted to make a roasted chicken but of course the grocery store was completely out and since it was almost 10 at night when I went, I wasn't in the mood to go to another store to get a chicken. The store had nice big selection of turkeys so I decided to go with that instead.

So here is my recipe for a classic turkey. I know Thanksgiving is over but this would be perfect for Christmas OR for a nice Sunday meal. When I was at the store I just looked for the smallest turkey that I could find because I really didn't want a huge Thanksgiving turkey. I found a 12 1/2 pound turkey and it was perfect for six people.

This recipe is nice and easy and so flavorful! When my husband was carving the turkey he was so amazed at how tender the meat was. It was almost difficult for him to slice it because it just kept falling apart. It was perfect! You just have to make sure you don't over cook it!

Also (sorry this is a really long post) you can use regular pepper when you use this recipe, but I like to use fresh ground peppercorns. I've included instructions for how to crush peppercorns, it's super easy and really adds flavor!

Rosemary and Lemon Roasted Turkey

  • 1-  12-18 pound turkey
  • 2 large onions, peeled and quartered
  • 2 lemons
  • 4 fresh sprigs rosemary
  • 4 cups water
  • 1/2-1 stick butter, softened
  • salt
  • whole peppercorns, crushed
preheat oven to 325 degrees. remove the giblets from the turkey. rinse the turkey well and pat dry with a paper towel. place turkey on a roasting rack in a roasting pan. 

generously salt the turkey cavity. cut one lemon in half and squeeze the lemon juice into the cavity. take the  other lemon, roll it to release the juices and then pierce many deep cuts into it with a knife. stuff the cavity alternating with the squeezed lemon halves, the quarters from 1 onion, the rosemary sprigs, and finish with the pierced lemon. 

add the remaining onion quarters, giblets and water to the bottom of the roasting pan. season the skin with salt and crushed peppercorns to taste. rub skin with butter until well coated.

place turkey in the oven and roast according to the package directions based upon the size of your turkey. baste the turkey with pan juices every 30 minutes (don't leave this step out). cover with foil if the turkey starts to brown too fast. 

remove turkey from oven and let it rest 20-30 minutes before carving.

*How-To Crush Peppercorns*

Step 1- place peppercorns on a cutting board

Step 2- get a small sauce pan

Step 3- crush peppercorns with the bottom edge of the sauce pan

It's that easy and now you have fresh ground pepper!


Dinetonite said...

I've been searching for the perfect satay recipe for a while now... shall have to give yours a try!

Bri, Ash and Ty said...

Looks yummy. My problem, I'm scared to death to cook a turkey! haha!

side note: do you know how to use mustard seeds? I have a lot of recipes that call for dry mustard and i have this container for seeds. would i crush them the same way as peppercorns?

Valerie said...

Don't be scared to cook a turkey! It's actually really simple to do. I think it's just doing it that first time to figure out what you're doing and then after that you'll wonder why you were scared at all! Just get a small turkey and try it out for a Sunday meal. Then you'll be all ready to cook a large one for Thanksgiving!

As for your question, I've never ground mustard seeds before but I did a little research and I don't see why you couldn't do it the same way I crushed the peppercorns. However, the recommended way to grind mustard seeds is with a mortar and pestle, just fyi. You should try it with a saucepan just to see if it would work and let me know how it goes. Good luck! :)

Amanda said...

Made this for Christmas and it was the most flavorful turkey ever. Loved it!