Herb roast turkey

    6 hours

    Many recipes for roast turkey use quite a bit of butter but I wanted to try making it Provence style with olive oil and lots of herbs. It cooked beautifully! I mixed the herbs with the oil at least a couple of hours before putting the turkey in the oven but letting them infuse even longer certainly won't harm as the oil will have even more flavour.


    Pennsylvania, United States
    1 person made this

    Serves: 8 

    • For the herb turkey
    • 1 tablespoon coarse salt
    • 1 tablespoon dried basil
    • 1 tablespoon dried oregano
    • 1 tablespoon dried thyme
    • 1 tablespoon minced fresh rosemary
    • 1 teaspoon dried culinary lavender
    • 1 teaspoon dried sage
    • 1 teaspoon fennel seeds
    • 1 teaspoon dried marjoram
    • 1 tablespoon orange zest
    • olive oil as needed
    • 1 (5kg) free-range turkey, giblets removed
    • For the gravy
    • 2 tablespoons cornflour
    • 1 glug dry white wine
    • 1 glug double cream

    Cook:4hr  ›  Extra time:2hr marinating  ›  Ready in:6hr 

    1. In a mortar, add the salt, all the herbs and the orange zest; pound with a pestle till fragrant. Place in a small (250ml) jar and add enough olive oil to cover the herbs by about 3cm, stirring well so all the herbs are fully immersed in oil. Set to the side for at least 2 hours.
    2. Preheat the oven to 160 C / Gas 3.
    3. Place the turkey in a roasting tin. Strain the herb-oil mix. Set the oil to the side. Starting at the neck of the bird, slide your hand between the skin and the breast meat to loosen it. Take only the herbs and rub them onto the breast meat under the skin. Brush the inside of the turkey with the some of the strained oil.
    4. Tie the legs together with kitchen twine, and fix the wings to the body with trussing pins.
    5. Cover with a lid or aluminium foil and roast in the lower third of the preheated oven for 2 hours, basting with the infused oil every 30 to 40 minutes. After 2 hours uncover and roast till a meat thermometer inserted in the thigh reads 75 C in the breast and 80 C in the thigh. Continue to baste during the entire time; once you have used all the olive oil, baste with the juices that have accumulated in the tin.
    6. Remove the turkey from the oven and let rest, covered, for 1 hour. Pour the pan juices through a sieve into a small saucepan.
    7. Shortly before serving, mix the cornflour with a little water to make a paste. Reheat the meat juices and whisk in the cornflour mix. Simmer till thickened whisking constantly. Add wine and cream to taste.
    8. Carve the turkey and serve with the gravy.

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