Riesling roast turkey with fig and root vegetable dressing

  • Preparation Time60 mins
  • Cooking Time180 mins
  • Serves6
  • DifficultyHard
1 (5.5kg) whole turkey
2.25kg butter, divided
3 bottles Riesling
4 carrots, peeled
4 onions, peeled
2 heads celery
2 large celery roots, peeled
4 heads garlic, peeled and chopped
170g dried figs
120ml olive oil, plus more as needed
2 Pullman loaves white bread
960ml chicken stock
240ml Madeira wine
Salt and white pepper
450g plain flour
2 fresh bay leaves
1 bunch fresh thyme leaves, chopped
2 bunches fresh parsley leaves, chopped
Special Equipment: 10 feet of cheesecloth
1) Preheat the oven to 200C/Gas 6. Debone the entire turkey and roast just the bones in the oven for 45 minutes, turning the bones occasionally. Break the turkey down, separating the parts. Reserve all of the offal cuts separately.

2) Remove the turkey bones from the oven and add to a large stockpot. Cover with cold water and bring to the boil. Reduce the heat and simmer at least 1 hour to make turkey stock.

3) Melt 1.35kg of the butter and combine with Riesling. Soak the cheesecloth in the wine and butter mixture. Set aside.

4) Dice the carrots, onions, celery and celery root so that they are all about the same size. Toss the vegetables with the garlic, figs and olive oil. Spread out on sheet pans and roast in the oven until the vegetables are tender. Set aside.

5) Cut the bread into 2cm cubes. Spread out on sheet pans and toast in the oven until golden.

6) Combine the roasted vegetables mixture with the toasted bread in a large bowl. Melt 450g of the butter and toss with the vegetable and bread stuffing mixture. Transfer to a baking dish and add enough chicken stock to cover the mixture. Bake for 45 minutes. Reserve the stuffing and keep warm.

7) Melt 8 tbsp of the butter in a large saute pan over a medium-high heat. Add only the offal cuts of the turkey and saute until lightly browned and cooked through. When lightly browned, add the Madeira and deglaze the pan. Set aside to cool, chop into pieces and reserve.

8) Heavily season the remaining turkey meat with salt and white pepper. Wrap the seasoned meat in the soaked cheesecloth. Roast at 200C/Gas 6 for 25 minutes.

9) Remove the cheesecloth from the skin and continue roasting for an additional 15 minutes. Keep checking the temperature of the meat every 15 minutes until it registers 75C. Reserve the drippings. Hold the roasted turkey at room temperature for 12 minutes before slicing.

10) Toast the flour in a large saucepan until rust in colour. Add the turkey drippings, remaining butter, bay leaves and stir constantly until smooth. Cook until thickened.

11) When the gravy has reached a sufficient viscosity, strain and add the cooked, chopped offal cuts to the gravy. Refresh everything with chopped fresh herbs, to taste. Slice turkey and serve with stuffing on side and gravy over top.

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