Updated Nov 24, 2014Chatelaine
- Preheat oven to 325F (160C). Remove neck and bag of giblets from turkey. Discard or use for stock. Rinse turkey inside and out under cold running water. Pat dry with paper towels. Place breast side down in a roasting pan.
- Stuff neck cavity with enough Roasted Triple-Onion Stuffing to just fill. Lightly pack but do not overstuff, as stuffing expands as it cooks. Bring neck skin up over back. Sew shut or fasten with skewers. Turn bird breast side up to stuff body cavity. Add enough stuffing to completely fill cavity. (If you have leftover stuffing, see Extra stuffing, below.) Sew shut or fasten with skewers. Or tuck legs under skin flap, if there is one. Then cover stuffing with a piece of foil so that basting juices won’t make it soggy. Tuck wing tips under bird.
- Pat turkey dry with paper towels again. In a small bowl, stir butter with thyme, then smear all over turkey. Pour apple cider into pan (not over bird). Tent turkey with 2 large pieces of foil, sealing tightly to pan edges. Roast in centre of preheated oven 2 hours. Then remove foil and baste turkey with pan juices. Continue to roast, uncovered and basting occasionally, until drumstick moves easily at joint and a meat thermometer inserted into thigh reads 180F (82C). This will take 2 to 4 more hours, depending on size of bird. Baste often. If turkey is browning too much in one area, cover just that area with foil. Remove turkey to a cutting board. Loosely cover with foil and let stand at least 15 minutes before carving.
- While turkey is standing, make gravy. Skim off and discard any fat from top of pan juices. Melt butter in a large saucepan set over medium heat. Stir in flour to form a thick paste. Stir constantly until bubbly, 2 to 3 minutes. Slowly whisk in pan juices, a little at a time, making sure mixture is very smooth before adding more. This helps to prevent lumps. Stir in chicken broth, brandy and a pinch of thyme. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to low and simmer, stirring often, until gravy is as thick as you like, 10 to 15 minutes.
This is the classic Thanksgiving dinner bird, but with a juicy twist. The turkey roasts in a steam bath of apple cider, which glazes it and adds a fruity flavour that mellows out the gravy.
Turn any leftover Cider-Glazed Turkey into a quick and healthy turkey frittata.
Place extra stuffing on a large sheet of foil. Moisten with a little chicken broth. Cover with another large piece of foil. Fold edges to form a long flat packet. Place on a rimmed baking sheet. Heat in oven on rack below turkey during last 40 to 60 minutes of roasting. Or place stuffing in a microwave-safe dish. Cover with plastic wrap and heat in microwave on medium-high until hot, 6 to 8 minutes. Stir halfway through.