Butter-Basted Roast Turkey
Adapted from Anne Quatrano's "Summerland: Recipes for Celebrating with Southern Hospitality" (Rizzoli), this spectacular turkey calls for an easy dry brine.
- Total Time:
- Servings: 12
Photography: John Kernick
Source: Martha Stewart Living, November 2014
- Coarse salt and freshly ground pepper
- 1 turkey (14 to 16 pounds), giblets reserved for gravy
- 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature, plus 1 stick, melted, for basting
- Turkey Gravy for Roasted Turkey with Dry Brine, for serving
- Pomegranates, clementines, and sage and thyme sprigs, for garnish (optional)
Rub 2 tablespoons salt evenly inside cavity of turkey, then rub outside with 1/4 cup salt. Place on a rimmed baking sheet; refrigerate 24 hours.
Rinse turkey inside and out; pat dry with paper towels. Season cavity with salt and pepper. Rub room-temperature butter evenly over outside of turkey; season with salt and pepper. Tuck wings under turkey; tie drumsticks together with kitchen twine. Transfer to a roasting pan fitted with a rack. Let stand 1 hour.
Preheat oven to 425 degrees with rack in lower third. Roast turkey 30 minutes. Baste with some of melted butter; lower oven temperature to 350 degrees. Continue roasting, basting with butter every 30 minutes, until a thermometer inserted into thickest part of breast near (but not touching) bone registers 165 degrees, 1 1/2 to 2 hours total, depending on size of bird.
Transfer turkey to a serving platter. Reserve pan with drippings for gravy. Let turkey rest at least 45 minutes; carve and serve with gravy and garnishes.