Looking for the "perfect" turkey this Thanksgiving? The Web is loaded with mouth-watering recipes, but you'll deserve the title "gourmet" after using this recipe from online retailer Williams & Sonoma.
The classic recipe uses a method that became popular following World War II, and is basic in concept, but delightful to taste. You'll need:
--1 16-lb. fresh -- not previously frozen -- turkey, at room temperature
--1 yellow onion, quartered
--2 celery stalks, cut into 2-inch lengths
--3 or 4 fresh parsley sprigs
--1 bay leaf
--2 tablespoons herbes de Provence
--Salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
--6 tablespoons (3/4 stick) unsalted butter, melted
Position rack in bottom third of an oven and preheat to 425 degrees Fahrenheit. Remove the giblets and rinse the bird inside and out with cold water; pat dry with paper towels. Place the onion, celery, parsley, bay leaf and 1 tablespoon of the herbes de Provence in the cavity, and season with salt and pepper. If desired, truss the turkey. Brush with half of the butter, and season with remaining herbes de Provence, salt and pepper.
Place the turkey breast-side down on a rack in a roasting pan and roast for 45 minutes, basting with butter after 25 minutes. Reduce heat to 325 degrees, turn the turkey breast-side up and continue roasting, basting with the remaining butter and pan juices every 15 to 20 minutes.
After about 2 1/2 hours, begin testing for doneness by sticking an instant-read thermometer into the thickest part of the breast and thigh, away from the bone. The breast should register 165 degrees and the thigh, 180 degrees. If the breast begins to reach doneness before the thigh, cover the breast loosely with aluminum foil. The turkey should roast for a total of 3 to 3 1/2 hours. Transfer turkey to a warmed platter and cover loosely with foil; let rest about 20 minutes before carving. Serves 10 to 12.
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