Roast Turkey With Lemon, Parsley & Garlic Butter

Xmas '12 025

My favourite way of roasting a turkey.  The butter prevents the breast meat from drying out.  Also, leave the bird to rest for the same amount of time you cooked it for.  The Juices are re-absorbed and the meat relaxes making it easier to carve and the gravy will restore the heat.


5kg Turkey (idealy free range)
Salt & Pepper to season
6-8 rashers of bacon
375g butter at room temperature
Juice and zest of 1 lemon
2 cloves of garlic, finely chopped
Small bunch of flat leaf parsley, chopped.


Preheat the oven to 220°/ gas mark 7.

Make the lemon, parsley & garlic butter my mixing the garlic, parsley, lemon juce and zest into the butter.

Seperate the skin of the turkey from the breast.  Be very carefull not to tear the skin and spoon the butter between the skin and the breast meat.  Smooth over with your hands & make sure the meat gets an even covering.

Once done, overlap the rashers of bacon over the top of the turkey and roast for 15 mins.  After 15 mins, remove from the oven and baste.  Lower the heat to 180° (gas mark 4) and cook for a further 2 and a half hours, basting occasionally.

Test if the bird is cooked by inserting a skewer into the tickest part of the bird.  If the juices run clear, it is done.  If not, return to the oven and check every 15 mins.

Once done, remove from the oven and rest for 3 hours.  Add the bacon to your gravy – it will add a nice smokey flavour.

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