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Recipe courtesy of Bryan Voltaggio and Michael Voltaggio

Traditional Roasted Turkey

  • Level: Intermediate
  • Total: 19 hr 50 min
  • Prep: 1 hr
  • Inactive: 14 hr
  • Cook: 4 hr 50 min
  • Yield: 10 to 12 servings
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2 tablespoons canola oil

12 ounces chicken wings, halved at the joint

1 turkey neck

1/4 cup diced carrots

1/4 cup diced celery

1/4 cup diced onions

1/2 cup red wine

1 tablespoon soy sauce

1/2 tablespoon salt

3 allspice berries

3 cloves garlic, smashed

2 whole cinnamon sticks

2 sprigs fresh marjoram

2 sprigs fresh thyme


One 14-to-16-pound fresh turkey

2 teaspoons fine sea salt

20 grinds black pepper from a mill

5 sprigs fresh marjoram

3 sprigs golden sage

2 sprigs fresh rosemary

2 green apples, sliced

1 Spanish onion, julienned

4 cloves garlic, smashed

1 cup Herb Mayonnaise, recipe follows

Herb Mayonnaise:

2 egg yolks

1 tablespoon Dijon mustard

2 cups canola oil

1 tablespoon chopped fresh marjoram

1 tablespoon chopped fresh golden sage

1 tablespoon chopped fresh thyme

1/2 orange, juiced

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper


  1. For the brine: In a large Dutch oven or stock pot, heat the oil over medium-high heat. Add the chicken wings and neck of the turkey and cook, stirring occasionally, until dark brown and roasted, about 10 minutes. 
  2. Add the carrots, celery and onions and continue cooking until golden, another 5 to 7 minutes. Add the wine and scrape the bottom of the pot with a wooden spoon to release all bits. Add 1 quart cold water, the soy sauce, salt, allspice, garlic, cinnamon, marjoram and thyme. Bring to a boil. Once the liquid has boiled for 5 minutes, stir well and cool down over an ice bath. 
  3. Strain out the solids and reserve. 
  4. For the turkey: Put the brine and the turkey into a brining bag and seal. Allow the turkey to brine for 12 hours in the refrigerator before cooking. Rinse the turkey to remove the excess brine and pat dry with towels. Reserve about 1/2 cup of the brine for basting. Let the turkey stand uncovered at room temperature for 1 to 1 1/2 hours. 
  5. Position a rack in the lower third of the oven and preheat to 425 degrees F. 
  6. Place the reserved brine solids on the bottom of a roasting pan. Then fit the roasting rack over the solids. Sprinkle the turkey cavity with the salt and pepper. Place the marjoram, sage, rosemary, apples, onions and garlic inside the cavity. Truss the turkey with kitchen twine. Coat the turkey evenly with the Herb Mayonnaise, using more if needed. Place the turkey, breast-side up, on the rack in the roasting pan and roast for 30 minutes. Reduce the heat to 325 degrees F and roast for about 1 1/2 hours more, then begin basting every 15 minutes with the drippings and leftover brine using a pastry brush. Continue roasting until an instant-read thermometer inserted into the thigh registers 165 degrees F. Total roasting time should be 3 to 3 1/2 hours. Remove the turkey from the oven and allow it to rest about 15 minutes. Cut and discard the kitchen twine and carve. Serve with gravy.

Herb Mayonnaise:

Yield: 2 cups
  1. Add the egg yolks and mustard to a food processor or blender. Pulse until combined. While the processor is running, slowly drizzle in the oil until the mixture has fully emulsified and thickened. Transfer the mixture to a bowl and fold in the marjoram, sage, thyme and orange juice. Use 1 cup (or more if needed) for the turkey, and reserve the rest for another use. Season with salt and pepper. 

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