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Quick Turkey Roast


  • 4.5kg (9lb 15oz) turkey

  • 3 celery stalks, roughly chopped

  • 2 large onions, roughly chopped

  • 2 to 3 carrots, roughly chopped

  • 3 bay leaves

  • a few sprigs of thyme

  • 3 cloves garlic

  • butter or olive oil

  • salt and freshly ground black pepper

  • 900ml (1 ½ pints) chicken stock

  • 1 glass of red or white wine (depending on what gravy you want)


  • For the turkey:

  • 1.

    Pre-heat oven to 180°C/Gas mark 4.

  • 2.

    Line the bottom of your baking tray with the vegetables and herbs– these form a trivet for the bird and go to make the gravy at the end.

  • 3.

    Place the bird on top on the veg and smear the skin with butter or olive oil and season generously.

  • 4.

    Add a couple of cups of chicken stock to the tray and a glass of either red or white wine.

  • 5.

    Wrap the entire tray in foil and place in the oven. See cooking times below.

  • 6.

    Pull the foil back from time to time to add more stock as necessary.

  • 7.

    The bird is cooked when you reach 75°C and to a max of 80°C with a meat thermometer or when you cut into the thickest part of the leg with a knife and the juices run clear.

  • 8.

    When cooked remove to a platter, cover to keep warm and leave to rest for 15-20 minutes.

  • For the gravy:

  • 1.

    Pour the remaining stock into the roasting tin and place directly on the hob.

  • 2.

    Cook for 5 minutes, stirring and scraping the bottom with a wooden spoon to remove any sediment.

  • 3.

    Season and pour through a sieve into a gravy boat.

  • 4.

    If you want a thicker gravy use some cornflour mixed with water and make sure you allow it to cook out.


Guidelines for turkey:

For a turkey weighing between 4.5kg and 6.5kg, allow 40 minutes per kg. Remember some ovens, such as fan-assisted ovens, might cook the turkey more quickly - check the manufacturer's handbook for your oven if you can. The most important message is always to check that the meat is properly cooked before serving.

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