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    Lemon & garlic butter turkey

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    Lemon & garlic butter turkey

    To keep the turkey juicy, rub garlic butter under the skin. It adds a wonderful depth of flavour to the meat. For a festive look, add some cranberries, roasted shallots and charred clementine halves 

    • Christmas
    • Preparation time: 20 minutes + resting
    • Cooking time: 3 hours
    • Total time: 3 hours 20 minutes + resting

    Makes: 8, with leftovers


    125g unsalted butter, softened
    3 cloves garlic, crushed
    2 unwaxed lemons, zested and halved 
    25g pack flat leaf parsley, leaves only, finely chopped
    1 Medium Free Range Bronze Feathered Whole Turkey (4-6kg)
    500ml fresh turkey or chicken stock
    5 echalion shallots (unpeeled), halved
    1 tbsp olive oil
    3 clementines or oranges, halved
    Fresh sage, rosemary, bay leaves and cranberries, to decorate 


    1 Preheat the oven to 180°C, gas mark 4. Put the butter, garlic, lemon zest and parsley in a small bowl. Season well and mix to combine. Gently push ½ the butter mixture under the skin of the turkey, being careful not to rip it, then rub the remainder all over the outside of the bird. Put the lemon halves in the turkey cavity, then tie the legs together tightly with string. Season all over.

    2 Put the turkey on a rack in a large roasting tin. Pour the stock (or 500ml water) into the tin (this will stop the dripping fat from smoking). Roast for 45 minutes per kg (so 3 hours 45 minutes for a 5kg turkey), until fully cooked through, the juices run clear and no pink meat remains. (A thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the thigh should read 70°C.) If the turkey is browning too quickly, cover with foil for the final 45 minutes of cooking time. Transfer to a large platter, cover with foil and allow the turkey to rest for at least 30 minutes.

    3 Meanwhile, increase the oven temperature to 200°C, gas mark 6. Put the shallots on a baking tray, drizzle with the oil and season. Roast for 25 minutes, or until golden. Heat a frying or griddle pan over a high heat until very hot, then add the clementines or oranges, cut-side down, and cook for 3-5 minutes, until charred. Arrange the shallots, charred clementines, herbs and cranberries around the turkey and serve. 

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