- 1 12-14 lb. Turkey, fully thawed (fresh, organic are best)
- 2 gallons Cold water
- 1/4 cup Granulated garlic powder
- 1 cup Coarsely chopped onions
- 1 cup Coarsely chopped celery
- 1 cup Coarsely chopped lemons
- 1 cup Coarsely chopped apples
- 1 Tbsp. Fresh thyme leaves (packed)
- 1 Tbsp. Fresh sage chiffonade (packed)
- 1 Tbsp. Fresh coarsely chopped parsley (packed)
- 1 tsp. Cracked black pepper
- 2 cups Kosher salt
- 1/4 lb. Butter, melted
- Dry, white wine, as needed
- (Optional) 2 lb. frozen ice packs
Using gloved hands, remove the giblets (reserve for stock/giblet gravy), rinse and pat-dry (with paper towels) the cavity of the turkey. Mix the kosher salt, granulated garlic and/or fresh herb sprigs (optional), and two gallons of cold water in a 5-gallon bucket or container with a cover. Carefully immerse the turkey in the brine, cover, and chill for 8-10 hours.
Cooler method: If refrigeration space is at a premium, mix the brine in a 5-gallon cooler, immerse the turkey, place a frozen ice pack into the brine at each corner of the cooler, top the turkey with the two remaining ice packs, cover, and soak for 8-10 hours.
Preheat oven to 450ºF. Using gloved hands, remove the turkey from the brine and transfer to a clean work surface (I line it with aluminum foil for safe/easy clean-up). Mix the onions, celery, lemons and apples with the thyme, sage and cracked pepper to make an aromatic mirepoix, and place loosely in the cavity of the turkey. Rub the outside with melted butter (save a little for the foil) and season lightly with kosher salt and black pepper only.
Place a poultry rack in a heavy roasting pan, line it with aluminum foil and brush the foil with melted butter. Carefully place the turkey, breast-down, on to the prepared rack. Add enough water to cover the bottom of the roasting pan by a ½-inch (do not allow to go dry throughout roasting), place in the bottom rung of a pre-heated 450º oven, and roast for 30 minutes.
Open the oven, carefully pull out the oven rack half-way, and using two cook’s tongs, turn the turkey a quarter-turn so that it is on its side. Sprinkle the turkey liberally with the wine, slide back the rack, and roast another 15-20 minutes. Repeat the process on the other side for another 15-20 minutes. Repeat the process one last time, with the breast-side up, for 30 minutes longer.
Check for an internal temperature of 155ºF. at the joint where the thigh meets the body (carry-over cooking will take it the rest of the way as it is resting). By using this roasting method a 12-14 pound turkey can be roasted perfectly brown and crisp while moist and tender in 1½-2 hours.