Christmas turkey

Make this bird a guest at your dinner table this Christmas.
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Recipe from: 9 December 2010
Preparation time: 15 mins
Cooking time: approximately 4 hrs


  • 4
  • 75
    butter, softened
  • 7
    mustard powder
  • 7
  • 15
  • 5
    milled black pepper
  • 250
    rindless streaky bacon, chopped
  • 30
  • 2
    onions, finely chopped
  • 500
    stale breadcrumbs
  • 3
    green apples, cooked and puréed
  • 2
    lemons, grated peel
  • 500
    pork sausage meat
  • 2
    sage, thyme or marjoram leaves
  • 1
  • salt and milled pepper
Servings: Change Serving


Preheat the oven to 160 ºC. Remove the giblets from the turkey.
Clean and wash the turkey, inside and out.
Pat dry with paper towels.
Smooth 30 ml (2 tbsp) butter under the breast skin.
Melt remaining butter and brush over entire turkey.
Mix the mustard, flour, salt and pepper and pat all over the turkey.

Fry the bacon until crisp in heated butter and crumble into a bowl.
Sauté onions in the same pan and stir in the breadcrumbs.
Add to the bacon.
Mix with remaining ingredients.
Stuff the neck and stomach cavities loosely, to allow for expansion during cooking.
Self-basting turkeys are often already trussed.
To add the stuffing, release the feet and parson's nose, wash the cavity, stuff and secure again.)
Close the cavities with small metal skewers and tie them together with string to prevent the stuffing from spilling out during cooking.
Alternatively, you can place a piece of crumpled foil into the mouth of each cavity.
Truss the turkey by inserting small metal skewers through the legs and wings.
Cut a long piece of string and place it under the parson's nose, loop it around the legs, draw up the string (leaving a fairly long tail end) and loop it around the leg skewers.
Cross the string over the breast and loop it around the wing skewers.
Tie the ends together firmly under the parson's nose.
Brush wings thoroughly with melted butter before covering with foil to protect them during roasting.


Prepare the gravy in advance. Wash the giblets and set the liver aside. Fry the gizzard and neck in a little sunflower oil until golden brown.
Drain and then place in a saucepan with 2 onions, 2 chopped carrots, 4 celery sprigs, 1 bay leaf and salt and milled pepper.
Add 500 ml (2 cups) water and 125 ml (1/2 cup) white wine and bring to boil. Simmer, uncovered, until reduced by half, to make a flavoursome turkey stock.
When the turkey has finished roasting and has been removed from the roasting pan, skim off any fat from the pan drippings, add the strained turkey stock to the pan and stir thoroughly.
Melt 15 ml (1 tbsp) butter in a saucepan, blend in 10 ml (2 tsp) flour and slowly stir the mixture into the gravy over low heat until thickened.
Sauté the turkey liver in 5-10 ml (1-2 tsp) sunflower oil for 2 to 3 minutes (it should still be pink inside).
Season with salt and milled pepper, cool, and slice thinly.
Add the liver to the gravy with a little medium cream sherry just before serving with the turkey.


Read more on: poultry  |  roast  |  festive 2014


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