Roast Turkey with Herb Butter

  • Yield : 8-10
  • Cook Time : 15m
  • Ready In : 45m
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  • One 10- to 12-pound turkey
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 stick (8 tablespoons) unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 1 tablespoon minced fresh chives
  • 2 lemons, quartered, plus 2 teaspoons lemon juice
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons minced fresh flat-leaf parsley, plus 3 sprigs
  • Pinch of cayenne


Step 1

Let the turkey sit out at room temperature for about 1 hour.

Step 2

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Remove the packet of neck and giblets from the turkey and set aside. Cut away any fatty pieces near the cavity or neck and discard. Pat the turkey dry inside and out with paper towels and sprinkle liberally with salt and pepper inside and out.

Step 3

Combine the butter, chives, lemon juice, parsley, cayenne and 1/2 teaspoon each salt and pepper in a medium bowl with a rubber spatula. Loosen the skin over the turkey breast, push half of the butter mixture under the skin and spread over the breast meat. Rub the skin of the entire turkey with the rest of the butter mixture. Stuff the cavity with the lemon quarters and parsley sprigs. Tie the legs together with twine. Tuck the wings under the body and put the turkey breast-side up on a rack in a roasting pan.

Step 4

Roast until the turkey begins to turn golden, about 25 minutes. Loosely tent the breast with foil, then reduce the oven temperature to 325 degrees F. Continue roasting, until an instant-read thermometer inserted in the thigh joint reaches about 155 degrees F. Remove the foil and continue roasting until the thigh reaches 165 degrees F, about 30 minutes more. Transfer the turkey and rack to a cutting board and let rest about 30 minutes.

Step 5

When ready to serve, discard the lemons and parsley from the cavity before carving.

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