This fabulous dish is much more than just Roasted Turkey. The veggies all go in too, in the same roasting pan, and getting deliciously flavored by the roasted turkey cooking liquids.
At my Cooking Demo this past Monday night, Thanksgiving Feast, my guests were simply amazed we finished the preparations of a whole Thanksgiving dinner with more than half an hour to spare, not including the 2 hours baking time we started the roasted turkey on before demo started, during which we also did all our prep work. Not only that: While I sliced the roasted turkey, I threw the bones and all scraps in a big pot of water boiling on the stove, with whatever I had on hand: Onions, celery, dill, etc…. By the time we finished dinner, the soup was ready for straining, and I came away with more than 5 quarts perfect chicken (OK turkey: the best) soup! Not for nothing do I call my Thanksgiving the No Sweat Thanksgiving Feast!
By the time this delicious roasted turkey rests and gets sliced, three things can happen simultaneously and with no fuss: Your roasting liquid is reducing, resulting in a delicious gravy with no starch and no dilution whatsoever, au contraire; your veggies are roasting; Your rice is cooking: Leave it simple, there are plenty of flavors everywhere!
- 1 cup white wine
- 1 cup maple syrup
- 2/3 cup Dijon mustard
- 2 tablespoons ground pepper
- 6 cups water
- 1 12-14 pound turkey, frozen OK, at room temperature
- 4 mackintosh apples, unpeeled, diced
- 8 thin parsnips, or 4 larger ones, diced
- 2 large heads fennel, cut into thin wedges
- ¼ cup olive oil
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 3 sprigs sage, leaves only, chopped coarsely
Preheat the oven to 325 degrees. Mix the wine, maple syrup, mustard, pepper and water in a bowl. Place the turkey breast side down in a (real) baking dish, and pour the mixture over it. Cover the pan loosely with foil, and bake 2 ½ hours. Turn the turkey over, breast side up. Bake uncovered 1 more hour, or a little longer, until the juices of the turkey run clear and the skin looks a nice golden color. Transfer the turkey to a cutting board, and let it rest a few minutes before slicing. Transfer all but 1 cup of the liquid to a saucepan, and reduce them on a high flame until it thickens to the consistency of maple syrup: this is your gravy. You will end up with about 3 cups of gravy. Meanwhile, raise the temperature to 475 degrees. Add the second set of ingredients. Give a good mix to the veggies, and roast about 25 minutes, or a little longer, until very tender and roasted.
Slice the turkey, and place in a platter, with the roasted vegetables all around, and pour the gravy over the turkey and vegetables