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Treat your family reunion to a sumptuous feast this Thanksgiving with a delicious Dutch oven turkey! This turkey will delight your guests with its mouth-watering brine and keep them coming back for more!
1 cup kosher salt
1 gallon vegetable stock
2 tbsp.olive oil
1 tbsp. black peppercorns
1 onion quartered
2 celery stalks chopped into 2-3 slices
2-3 stalks of fresh sage or 1 teaspoon dried
1- gallon cold water
1 (12-14 pound) young turkey (reserve neck and giblets for the stock)
4 crushed garlic cloves
2 rosemary stalks
3-4 fresh sage leaves
5-6 slices of hickory smoked bacon
4 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 teaspoon sage
1 teaspoon dry parsley
1 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon garlic powder
1 tablespoon onion powder
In a large stockpot over medium-high heat, combine together kosher salt, vegetable stock, olive oil, black peppercorns, onion, celery, and sage. Bring to a boil.
After boiling, remove the brine from heat, cool to room temperature, and refrigerate.
Once completely cold, stir in 1 gallon of cold water.
Remove giblets and neck from completely defrosted turkey.
Submerge the turkey in the cool (never warm or hot) brine and refrigerate for 10-15 hours. Do not exceed 24 hours.
Make sure to turn it around at least 3 times during brining.
Preheat the oven to 425°F.
Pat dry the turkey. Trim excess fat. Starting at the neck cavity, loosen skin from breast and drumsticks by inserting fingers, gently pushing between skin and the meat. Try not to break the skin, so be gentle. Lift wings, tips up and over back; tuck under turkey.
Combine all the ingredients for the butter, in a small bowl.
Rub butter mixture under loosened skin and over breasts and drumsticks, add inside of the turkey as well, then add a couple of fresh sage leaves and slide them in under the skin.
Stuff the turkey with 2 roughly chopped carrots, roughly chopped onion, quartered lemon, crushed garlic, and rosemary stalks. Tie legs together with cooking twine/butcher’s twine.
Place parchment paper on the bottom of a Berlinger Haus 11.8” Cast Iron Oval Casserole with Enamel Coating or a small wire rack to hold the turkey and separate from the very bottom. Parchment pepper works well too.
Arrange turkey, breast side up, on a roasting rack or parchment paper. Bake turkey at 425° for 30 minutes without a lid, just to get a nice color on top.
Pull the turkey out, then add 5-6 slices of hickory-smoked bacon on the turkey breast, cover the Cast Iron Casserole and then reduce oven temperature to 325°F
Bake an additional 1 hour and 15 minutes, or until a thermometer inserted into the meaty part of the thigh registers at 165°F. It will take less than 2 hours and 15 minutes of roasting time because of being cooked in a Dutch oven.
Let the turkey stand loosely covered for 30 minutes before carving.