Thursday, December 27, 2012

Christmas Roast Turkey with Ricotta Stuffing

I have always wanted to roast a turkey for christmas. This year, I did it! This recipe from Neil Perry was so delicious with the ricotta and butter rub- only thing was his recipe was for a very very big bird (7.6kg!), so I tweaked the oven cooking time/method to suit the 4kg turkey I ordered.

4kg whole turkey
extra virgin olive oil
1 small brown onion, finely chopped
8 cloves garlic, crushed
1 cup baby spinach
200g fresh ricotta, drained
1 T chopped thyme
1 T chopped flat leaf parsley
90g raisins, soaked in hot water for 5 minutes and drained
75g unsalted butter, finely diced (room temperature)
1 egg
sea salt and white pepper

Serves 6 adults with plenty of leftovers

1. Preheat oven to 200°C. Rinse the turkey and pat dry with absorbent paper.
2. To make the stuffing, heat a little olive oil in a frying pan. Add onion and garlic and cook over low heat for 5 minutes or until the onion is soft. Remove from heat and set aside to cool.
3. Microwave the spinach in hot water for 2 minute, drain and rinse under cold water. Squeeze the excess water from spinach. Chop coarsely.
4. Combine the onion mixture with the spinach, ricotta, herbs, raisins, and butter in a medium bowl. Add the eggs, season with salt and pepper and mix well.
5. Spread the stuffing between the skin and breast/legs, until it is firmly packed in. Rub the skin with plenty of olive oil and season the turkey inside and out with sea salt and white pepper.
6. Place the turkey on a greased wire rack in a large baking tray, and roast breast side down, on top, cover with greased aluminium foil and roast for 1 hour and 15 minutes.
7. Turn turkey, breast side up, and roast uncovered for a further 20 minutes or until cooked (When tested with a meat thermometer, the internal temperature of the breast should be 74°C and the legs 80°C).

1. If the turkey was frozen, start defrosting in fridge at least 2 days before cooking.
2. For gravy, heat up the juices from turkey in a pan with 20g butter, 3 T plain flour, 2 cups of water. Stir and let reduce to gravy consistency. 
3. When seasoning the skin and inside of turkey, rub with ALOT of salt (I used at least 1 Tablespoon).
4. Meat thermometer is essential to make sure the turkey's cooked perfect.

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