Holiday Turkey with Sage and Sherried Cider Gravy



2 12-lb WHOLE TURKEYS, fresh or frozen (thawed)

As needed salt and freshly ground black pepper

1 Large lemon, cut in qters

14 Large fresh sage leaves

4 Slices multi-grain bread

1 Large Granny Smith apple, wedged

1 Large sweet onion, wedged

1 c unsalted butter, softened

1 Pint water

1 Pint dry sherry

1 Pint sparkling apple cider

2/3 c flour


As needed assorted fresh sage leaves


Roasted Turkeys

Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.

Rinse and pat turkeys dry, inside and out. Season turkeys inside and out with salt and pepper.

Place 1 lemon wedge, 1 sage leaf and 1 bread slice into each neck cavity. Fold neck skin under body and fasten with a skewer.

Fill each body cavity with apples and onions, 3 sage leaves and remaining lemon wedge and bread slice. Truss turkeys.

Rub turkeys with remaining sage. Spread turkeys with butter and arrange on rack in roasting pans.

Roast turkeys in middle of preheated 425 degree F oven 30 minutes. Reduce temperature to 325 degrees F and baste turkeys with pan juices. Add water to roasting pan and continue roasting, basting every 20 minutes. Continue to roast 2-1/2 to 3 hours more, or until the internal temperature reaches 180 degrees F in the thigh.

Transfer turkeys to carving board, reserving juices in roasting pan; discard string. Keep turkeys warm, covered loosely with foil.

Sherried Cider Gravy

Skim fat from pan juices, reserving 1/2 cup fat.

On range top, deglaze pan with sherry over moderately high heat, scraping up brown bits. Stir in cider.

Bring sherry mixture to a boil and remove pan from heat.

In a heavy saucepan, whisk together reserved fat and flour and cook roux over moderately low heat. Whisk together for about 3 minutes.

Add sherry mixture and stock in a stream, whisking to prevent lumping. Simmer, whisking occasionally for about 10 minutes.

Whisk in additional stock to thin gravy if desired.

Season gravy with salt and pepper.

Discard the cavity ingredients before serving. Garnish turkey with sage.

NOTE: Provides 32-34 servings at 6 ounces per portion.

Nutrition Facts

Total Calories 490

Calories from Fat 220

Total Fat 25 g

% Daily Total Fat 38

Saturated Fat 8 g

% Daily Saturated Fat 40

Cholesterol 170 g

% Daily Cholesterol 57

Sodium 430 mg

% Daily Sodium 18

Total Carbohydrates 4 g

% Daily Total Carbohydrates 1

Dietary Fiber 0 g

% Daily Dietary Fiber 0

Sugars 2 g

Protein 55 g

% Daily Protein 2

% Daily Vitamin C 0

% Daily Calcium 6

% Daily Iron 60