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Active time
45 minutes
Total time
2 hours
Serves 16-20

16 to 18 pound turkey, thawed, if frozen

1 medium onion, cut into wedges

2 ribs celery, cut into 2-inch pieces

2 medium carrots, cut into 2-inch pieces

1 to 2 stems each of fresh sage, rosemary and thyme, if desired

3 cloves garlic

⅓ cup chopped fresh sage leaves

¼ cup fresh rosemary leaves

3 tablespoons fresh thyme leaves

½ teaspoon salt

½ teaspoon pepper

⅓ cup plus ½ cup olive oil

Additional stems rosemary, thyme, and sage

  1. Heat oven to 325ºF. Remove the giblets and neck from the turkey; discard or save for broth, if desired. Rinse the cavity of turkey and pat dry. If desired, sprinkle the inside of the turkey with salt and pepper to taste. Place the onion, celery, carrot, and 1 to 2 stems each of sage, rosemary and thyme inside the turkey. Place the turkey on a rack in a roasting pan; set aside.
  2. In a food processor or blender, chop the garlic until fine. Add the remaining herbs and pulse until coarsely chopped. Add the salt and pepper. With the machine running, add ⅓ cup olive oil; process until well blended.
  3. Carefully separate (but do not remove) the skin from the meat on the breast of the turkey. Rub 2 tablespoons of the olive oil mixture between the meat and the skin. Replace the skin. If desired, add 1 cup of water or broth to the pan under the rack. Roast the turkey for 1 hour.
  4. Meanwhile, blend the remaining ½ cup of olive oil into the remaining herb mixture. After 1 hour of roasting, baste the turkey with part of herb mixture. Continue roasting and basting every hour for 2½ to 3¼ hours or until the internal temperature of the thickest part of the thigh is 170ºF. and the juices run clear. If necessary, cover the breast of the turkey with foil to prevent over-browning during roasting. Remove from the oven, cover loosely with foil and let stand 10 to 15 minutes before carving.

Total roasting time will be about 12 to 20 minutes per pound, depending on the size of the turkey. Check the turkey wrapper for additional timing information.

Recipe, content and photo courtesy of the North American Olive Oil Association


Calories: 620
Total Fat: 30g
Saturated Fat: 7g
Sodium: 480g
Carbohydrate: 2g
Fiber: 0g
Protein: 81g

Yield: Serves 16-20

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