One-pan roast turkey cushion with trimmings
- December 2018
- Serves 6-8
- Hands-on time 40 min, oven time 1 hour 45 min
This is your all-in-one Christmas lunch for a group of six to eight people.
Find out how to make your own magnificent turkey cushion stuffed with a lentil and sausage stuffing, then roasted on a bed of root vegetables until caramelised.
Keep it easy this Christmas with our ultimate one-tray wonder.
- 33.2g (8.5g saturated)
- 63.8g (17.3g sugars)
- 1.5kg whole free-range turkey breast
- 16 rashers smoked streaky bacon, stretched on a chopping board with the back of large knife
- Good quality shop-bought turkey gravy and cranberry sauce
For the stuffing
- 100g cooked puy lentils
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 1 onion, finely chopped
- 40g pine nuts, roughly chopped
- 40g unsalted pistachios, roughly chopped
- 40g dried raisins
- 40g dried cranberries
- 300g British free-range pork sausagemeat
- 6 cardamom pods, seeds removed and finely crushed
- Finely grated zest 1 orange
- Finely grated zest 1 lemon
- Large bunch fresh flatleaf parsley, finely chopped
- 75g dried breadcrumbs
- 2 tbsp pomegranate molasses
For the tray-roast vegetables
- 1.5kg baby new potatoes, halved if large
- 450g baby parsnips, trimmed, halved if large
- Olive oil for drizzling
- 450g baby carrots, trimmed
- 100g prepared kale (see tip)
- 2 tbsp pomegranate molasses
You’ll also need…
- Large deep roasting tin; kitchen string; metal skewer or, ideally, digital probe thermometer
- Heat the oven to 190°C/170°C fan/gas 5. Put all the ingredients for the stuffing in a large bowl, season with salt and black pepper, then mix well using your hands.
- Lay the turkey breast on a board, skin-side down, pointing towards you. Cut vertically down the middle, two thirds of the way through. Use your hands to open the meat out slightly then, at the bottom of your cut, slice horizontally into each half to make a pocket on each side, being careful not to cut all the way through. Open out the meat, then use your hands to press the stuffing into the centre of the joint. Fold the meat back over the stuffing to encase, then shape the joint into as much of a round as you can. Tie a loop of string completely around the joint quite tightly, then do this another 2-3 times, neatly spacing the string to form a cushion-shaped parcel. Flip the parcel over, drape the bacon over the top and sides to cover (see Make Ahead), then put in the roasting tin and roast for 30 minutes.
- Meanwhile, for the vegetables, toss the potatoes and parsnips with a good drizzle of oil and season. After 30 minutes in the oven, cover the turkey parcel with a double layer of foil and tip the potatoes/parsnips into the roasting tin around the joint.
- After 30 minutes more, add the carrots to the roasting tin, toss all the vegetables in the cooking juices and oil in the tray, then roast for another 30 minutes. After this time, check the turkey by pushing a metal skewer into the centre of the turkey parcel. Keep it there for 3 seconds, then remove and test on the inside of your wrist – when the meat is cooked the skewer should feel hot. (Or better, use a digital probe thermometer – if it reads 72°C the turkey is ready.) Transfer from the tin to a board and leave to rest covered with foil.
- Toss the kale (see tip) in a splash of hot water with a sprinkle of salt. Add to the root veg in the roasting tin, tossing everything well. Drizzle over the pomegranate molasses, then return the tin to the oven for a final 15 minutes until the kale begins to crisp and the root veg are tender and caramelised. Carve the turkey into wedges, teasing out the string as you do so, and serve with the veg with gravy and cranberry sauce.
If you can find kalettes (also known as flower sprouts), use them instead of the kale. They’re a sweeter, nutty tasting cross between kale and brussels sprouts.
On Christmas Eve, stuff and prep the turkey cushion, then keep covered in the fridge. Prepare the vegetables, toss in oil, season with salt and pepper and keep in separate covered bowls or food bags in the fridge.
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