Apple Bourbon Turkey

Michael Symon
Servings: 10 - 12
2+ hr
Part 1 of 2

Not your ordinary turkey, make this dish for your Thanksgiving dinner!

  • Ingredients
  • step-by-step directions
Apple Bourbon Turkey
  • 1 whole organic turkey (about 12 pounds)
  • 1-2 apples (quartered)
  • 1 head garlic (halved widthwise)
  • 1 small bundle thyme
  • 1 cup butter
  • 1/4 cup bourbon
  • 1/4 cup hard cider
  • 5 sprigs sage
  • 8 onions (quartered)
  • Salt and Freshly ground black pepper (to taste)
  • The Day Before: Pat the turkey dry. Put turkey on a clean, large cloth and rub both the inside and outside generously with salt. Put the turkey in a container that fits comfortably, cover with plastic wrap and put in the fridge.
  • The next day, rinse the turkey and pat dry. Remove turkey 1 to 2 hours prior to roasting, so it can come to room temperature.
  • Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F, with the oven rack set on the lowest rung. Stuff the cavity of the turkey with the quartered apples, head of garlic and bundle of thyme.
  • In a small pot, bring the butter, bourbon, hard cider and sage to a simmer. Simmer and reduce for about 10 minutes. Remove from the heat and allow to cool slightly.
  • Place the quartered onions in the bottom of the roasting pan, acting as a rack. Drizzle the onions with olive oil and season them with salt and pepper. Add the neck and gizzards as well. Set the turkey on top of the onions.
  • Once cool enough to handle, soak a double layer of cheese cloth big enough to cover the bird in the butter mixture and drape over the breast and legs of the turkey. Pour the remaining contents of the pan over the bird, pushing the pieces of herbs into the bottom of the roasting pan.
  • Place the turkey in the oven and roast for 45 minutes. turn the temperature down to 375 degrees F and continue roasting for another 10-15 minutes per pound. Remove the cheesecloth in the final 10 minutes if you would like more browning.
  • Cook until an instant read thermometer reads 160 degrees F (inserted at the thickest part of the thigh).
  • Allow turkey to rest for a minimum of 20-30 minutes.

    - If you don't have a cheesecloth, baste with the pan juices every 30 minutes.
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