Holiday Feature


Roast Turkey

Makes 8 servings


Preheat oven to 475 F. Place rack in the lower third of oven.

Remove and discard the giblets from the cavity. Rinse the turkey inside and out under cold running water. Pat dry with paper towels. Sprinkle the cavity with salt, pepper and thyme. Truss the bird with kitchen twine to secure the legs and wings. Rub the entire skin of the bird with butter. Place the turkey, breast side up, on a rack in an ovenproof roasting pan.

In a small bowl, combine scotch and maple syrup. Reserve for basting. Place the turkey in the oven; cook until well seared, about 45 minutes. Reduce temperature to 375 degrees. Baste the breast and the legs of the bird about every 20 minutes with scotch-syrup mixture until all the liquid is used. Continue basting with the pan drippings until the turkey is done. Turkey is done when a meat thermometer inserted in the thickest part of the thigh reads 160 degrees and the juices run clear -- about 1-1/2 to 2 hours. Remove from oven and allow to rest about 15 minutes before carving to allow the juices to settle.

Peanwhile, prepare sauce: Collect the juices from the roasting pan in a clear measuring cup. Remove the fat from the juices and discard. Transfer the juices to a small saucepan and bring to a simmer over medium-high heat. Add the heavy or whipping cream and cook until reduced enough to coat the back of a spoon, about 8 minutes. Add the orange rind, walnuts, vanilla extract and chives, removing pan immediately from the heat. Adjust the seasoning with salt and black pepper to taste. Transfer to a sauce boat and keep warm until serving.

Present the turkey garnished with thyme or parsley and chives, and ornamental harvest vegetables such as gourds, baby Indian corn and dried chilies. Serve the warm sauce on the side to serve over the turkey when carved.

Cook's note: If the roasting pan is dry and no liquids are obtained for the sauce, add 2 cups of light stock or water to the pan and heat if necessary to dissolve the pan drippings, then proceed with the recipe.

Nutrition details per 8-ounce serving with skin and without bone:
Pecent of calories from fat—49%
Fat—41 gm
Protein—65 gm
Cholesterol—243 mg
Sodium—467 mg
Diabetic exchange: 8-1/2 lean meat, 1-3/4 fruit, 4 fat
Diabetics: Omit maple syrup


Jimmy Schmidt's Turkey Recipes

Roast Breast of Turkey with Apple Cider
Roast Turkey with Maple Glaze, Pears & Bourbon
Roast Turkey
Top 10 Turkey Secrets
About the Book: "Jimmy Schmidt's Cooking Class"
About Chef Jimmy Schmidt


Jimmy Schmidt's Cooking Class:
Seasonal Recipes from A Chef's Kitchen

By Jimmy Schmidt
$19.95 / Paper
Ten Speed Press
Publication Date: May 20, 1996
ISBN: 0-89815-804-4
Reprinted with permission


This page created 1996; modified November 2006