Turkey with Smoky Bacon and Mushrooms


serves: 12
5.5 kg (12 lb) oven ready turkey
1 onion peeled and cut into wedges
1 tbsp juniper berries
small bunch fresh parsley

for the stuffing

1 tbsp cooking oil
6 slices smoked bacon, chopped
1 onion, peeled and chopped
2 celery sticks, trimmed and chopped
2-3 garlic cloves, crushed
3 oz (75 g) wild mushrooms, lightly rinsed and chopped
75 g (3 oz chestnuts, peeled and roughly chopped
175 g (6 oz) fresh white breadcrumbs
2 tbsp grated orange rind
1 tbsp juniper berries, roughly chopped
2 tbsp freshly chopped parsley
1 large egg
2 tbsp orange juice
salt and pepper

to serve

5-6 small oranges
1 tbsp oil
175 g (6 oz) wild, chesnut and button mushrooms, lightly rinsed and chopped
1 tbsp roughly chopped parsley


1. Preheat the oven to 190°C/375°F/gas mark 5, 10 minutes before cooking.

2. Lightly rinse the turkey and pat dry. Heat the oil in a pan and gently sauté the bacon, onion, celery and garlic for 5 minutes or until the onion is softened.

3. Add the mushrooms and sauté for a further 2 minutes. Remove from the heat and stir in the remaining ingredients, mixing to a soft consistency with the egg and the orange juice.

4. Use the mushroom mix to stuff the neck cavity only, securing the flap over the stuffing with either a skewer or with a trussing needle and fine twine.

5. Any extra stuffing can be rolled into balls and cooked round the turkey for the last 20 minutes of cooking time.

6. Place the onion, juniper berries and parsley in the turkey body cavity. Now weigh the turkey and calculate the cooking time.

7. Place upside down in the roasting tin and cook in the oven for the calculated cooking time. (Allowing 15 minutes per 450 g (1 lb) if cooking uncovered and 18 minutes per 450 g (1 lb) if lightly covering with foil).

8. Turn the right way up 30 minutes before the end of the cooking time and remove foil if using. (Try and avoid opening the oven door too often while cooking).

9. Test if cooked by piercing the thickest part of the thigh with a long clean skewer or knitting needle. If the juices run clear, it is ready, if a little pink then return to the oven and cook a little longer.

10. Once cooked, remove the turkey from the oven, place on a serving platter, cover with tinfoil and a clean towel and leave for at least 15-20 minutes, this will make it easier to carve.

11. Meanwhile, cut the oranges in half and scoop out the flesh and pith, leave upside down on kitchen paper to allow the oranges to dry out a little.

12. Heat the oil and sauté the mushrooms for 5 minutes or until cooked, season to taste and stir in the parsley. Spoon into the hollowed out oranges and serve around the cooked turkey.

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