Moroccan Spiced Roasted Turkey

Moroccan Spiced Roasted TurkeyFree range heritage turkeys are a fabulous source of healthy lean protein, so when the turkeys are abundantly available in the Fall, I always by several to freeze and enjoy throughout the year!

Make your Thanksgiving uniquely special with one of these birds, exotically seasoned with the North African spices of Morocco!

Serve my Moroccan Spiced Turkey with minted couscous dotted with kalamata olives and grape tomatoes, Middle Eastern bean salad, stuffed grapevine leaves atop a spinach salad and roasted garlic potato/yam purée with lots of garlic Harissa gravy!

This is a fabulous meal we will all enjoy!!

Rosé or Chenin Blanc wine would be great!!

1 12-16 pound free range turkey

Mix together:

1/3 cup kosher salt

3 Tablespoons Moroccan spice, Victoria’s Gourmet is excellent

2 bay leaves, crushed

1 teaspoon dried thyme leaves

1 Tablespoon Ras El Hanout(Frontier or McCormick)

Zest of one fresh lemon

1/2 teaspoon dried coriander

1 teaspoon whole peppercorns

 

Rinse turkey inside and out, place in a cooking bag

Rub turkey with the above spice mixture inside and out

Tie up bag and place on a baking sheet

Refrigerate and marinate turkey for 24-48 hours

Remove turkey from refrigerator

Rinse turkey inside and out,discard bag and marinade

Pat turkey very dry

Stuff turkey with:

3/4 preserved lemon, cut up(reserve the other 1/4 for basting liquid)

1 fresh Meyer lemon, cut up

2-3 small organic carrots

4 whole garlic cloves

3 whole shallots

Place turkey on a rack in a roasting pan, tuck wings under back of turkey

Rub turkey all over, inside and out with an herb butter made of:

1 stick unsalted butter

1&1/2 teaspoon Moroccan spice(Victoria’s Gourmet)

1&1/4 teaspoon dried thyme leaves

3/4 teaspoon Ras el Hanout(Frontier or McCormick)

Tie legs together with kitchen string

Pop uncovered seasoned turkey in refrigerator and let rest overnight

Remove turkey from refrigerator, let rest at room temperature for 1 hour

 

Preheat oven to 325 degrees Fahrenheit

Add 1 cup rosé wine to bottom of pan

Add 2 cups of garlic Harissa turkey broth pre made from:

4 cloves garlic, 3 organic carrots,2 shallots,

2 bay leaves, dash of peppercorns,

1 teaspoon dried thyme and 1 Tablespoon Harissa powder( Frontier) which has been slow simmered

in water with turkey parts(neck, giblets etc)

 

Place uncovered turkey in oven

Baste turkey every 45 minutes with a mixture of:

1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil, the reserved 1/4 preserved lemon, chopped

And the turkey drippings

Allow 18 minutes per pound cooking time

Remove turkey from oven when cooked through and dark golden brown

Transfer turkey to a platter, let rest for 1 hour

 

In a saucepan, combine turkey drippings with the left over garlic Harissa turkey broth

Add 2 Tablespoons arrowroot powder dissolved in 1/4 cup water

Stir and bring to a low boil till gravy is slightly thickened

 

Serve gravy with the turkey and a roasted garlic potato/yam purée

Minted couscous, middle eastern seasoned beans and dolma studded spinach salad!

What a feast!! Enjoy with a dry Rose or Chenin Blanc wine!