garlic buttered roasted turkey
PREP TIME 10 mins, plus brining, COOK TIME 2 1⁄2 hrs, plus resting
6–10lb (2.7–5kg) whole turkey
2 garlic bulbs
1 cup butter, softened
salt and freshly ground black pepper
For the brine:
2⁄3 cup sea salt
2 bay leaves
1 tbsp allspice
pinch of cayenne pepper
5 garlic cloves, crushed
4 lemons, sliced
1 Prepare the brine a day in advance by filling a large stock pot or flameproof casserole halfway with water and stirring in the sea salt, bay leaves, allspice, cayenne pepper, garlic, and lemons.
2 Add the turkey to the brine, making sure that it is completely submerged. Cover the pot with a lid, set aside in a cool dark place, and let it sit overnight.
3 The next day, preheat the oven to 475ºF (240ºC). Remove the bird from the brine and pat dry. Using a paring knife, cut small slits throughout the turkey, particularly in the breast and legs. Peel one bulb of garlic and stuff a garlic clove into each slit.
4 Using your hands, generously massage the butter into the skin of the turkey. If possible, lift the skin and spread it underneath. Slice the remaining bulb of garlic in half and place it in the cavity. Season well and place the turkey, breast-side up, in a large roasting pan.
5 Roast the turkey in the oven for 20 minutes, then lower the oven temperature to 375ºF (190ºC). Roast for a further 2 hours, or until a thermometer inserted into the breast reads 330ºF (165ºC). Check the temperature frequently to prevent the meat from burning. Remove the turkey from the oven and let it rest for at least 30 minutes before carving and serving with other Thanksgiving dishes, such as Sweet potato casserole or Green bean casserole.