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Roast Turkey with Stuffing

Native Americans and early colonists hunted wild turkeys in North America and as settlers moved west they proved to be an important source of food. As a result, the wild turkey population dropped drastically during colonial times. That's when families began domesticating turkeys. While it’s likely that turkey was served at the first Thanksgiving in 1621, it was not the main focus as it typically is at holiday tables today. Some credit the bird’s prominence to Sarah Joseph Hale an American writer whose accounts of early New England celebrations highlighted a roast turkey and became a model for festivities after Abraham Lincoln declared Thanksgiving a national holiday in 1863.          

Recipe Servings: 10

Prep Time
30 minutes
+ 40 minutes resting
Cook Time
3 hours 30 minutes
Total Time
4 hours 40 minutes
Gluten Free
Dairy Free




    For Stuffing:
  1. Combine the butter, parsley, fennel leaves, chives, salt, and pepper.
  2. Spread half of the mixture onto three slices of bread. Place the remaining slices of bread on top to create sandwiches.
  3. Smear the remaining butter and herb mixture on top of the sandwiches.
  4. Cut each sandwich into four pieces, and stuff the pieces into the turkey at both ends, before tying up the legs.
  5. For Turkey:
  6. Preheat the oven to 450°F.
  7. Wash the turkey inside and out, then pat it dry with paper towels. Save the giblets for the stuffing.
  8. Rub the turkey inside and out with butter, paprika, salt, and pepper.
  9. Push the stuffing into the turkey, followed by orange halves on both ends. Tie up the legs with string.
  10. Pour water into a large roasting pan with a rack. Place the bird on the rack. Place the bird in the oven legs first.
  11. Roast for 30 minutes to brown the top, then lower the heat to 350°F. Bake for 2½–3 hours. Keep checking every 30 minutes, adding ½ cup of water as needed, or covering the top with foil if it is browning too quickly.
  12. Baste the meat with pan juices every 30 minutes. Cook the turkey until the inside temperature of the breast reaches 165°F.
  13. Remove the turkey from oven, take it off the rack, and place it on a platter. Let it rest uncovered for 40 minutes before carving.

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