Roast turkey with all the trimmings

Do you hanker after a traditional turkey with all the trimmings? Galton Blackiston comes to the rescue with the ultimate Christmas Day dinner.
By Galton Blackiston
Roast turkey with all the trimmings
  • Rating:
  • Serves: 10-16
  • Cook Time: plus 30 minutes resting
  • Prep Time: 40 minutes
  • Effort: easy

Ingredients

  • 6 kg turkey, preferably Norfolk black, giblets, liver and heart removed from the carcass
  • slightly softened butter, enough to liberally spread over the skin including the legs
  • salt and black pepper

For the stuffing

  • 1 large shallot, finely chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 20 g butter
  • 250 g pork sausage meat
  • 100 g field mushrooms, diced
  • 4 rashers of smoked streaky bacon
  • 1 skinless free range chicken breast, chopped
  • 1 egg
  • 70 ml double cream
  • 2 tbsp tarragon
  • handful spinach leaves, blanched and chopped

For the bread sauce

  • 4 slices white bread, crusts removed and preferably left in the kitchen over night to go stale
  • 1 small onion, studded with cloves
  • 250 ml milk
  • 1 bay leaf
  • a little mace
  • large knob of butter
  • salt and black pepper
  • drop of cream, optional

Method

To make the stuffing:
1. Fry the shallot and garlic in the butter, and when beginning to soften, add the bacon and mushrooms. Continue cooking until golden. Set aside to cool.

2. Place the chicken breast in a food processor and puree. Add the egg and cream and continue to process until smooth.

3. Remove the puree and place in a bowl. Add the tarragon, spinach and cooled mushroom and bacon mixture. Mix well and set aside to chill while you prepare the turkey.

To make the turkey:
1. Preheat the oven to 180C/gas mark 4.

2. Sit the turkey on your largest roasting tray and liberally spread with the softened butter.

3. Loosen the neck end of the turkey and fill with the stuffing, packing it in tightly. Make sure all the stuffing is covered with the skin.

4. Cover the turkey with foil.

5. Roast the turkey for 3-4 hours, depending on the exact size. For the first 2-3 hours leave the foil on, then for the final hour take the foil off to colour and crisp the skin.

6. Remove the turkey from the oven and leave in a warm place for 30 minutes.

7. Serve the turkey with the bread sauce and simple roasted parsnips, honey-glazed carrots and creamed spinach.

For the bread sauce:

1. Place the onion, milk, bay leaf and mace in a saucepan and warm gently.

2. Once the milk has come to the boil turn off the heat, cover with a lid or foil and leave for at least 30 minutes for the flavours to develop.

3. Process the bread in a food processor until you achieve fine crumbs.

4. Remove the onion, bay leaf and mace from the milk. Take out the cloves from the onion, finely chop the onion and return to the milk.

5. Over a low heat sprinkle in the breadcrumbs, stir well and continue cooking and the bread sauce is of a porridge consistency. Add a knob of butter and season. If you prefer a richer bread sauce, add a drop of cream.

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