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Roast turkey with sour-cherry stuffing and pickled cherries

We've included dried sour cherries in the stuffing here and served the turkey with a piquant cherry pickle for a double-whammy. The stuffing and pickled cherries can be made ahead to make things that much easier on Christmas Day. Try serving it with a simple herby farro salad dressed with a tangy lemon vinaigrette to keep things interesting. Start this recipe two days ahead to make the pickle.

You'll need

1 turkey (about 7kg), at room temperature 100 gm softened butter 500 ml (2 cups) chicken stock To taste: lemon juice   Pickled cherries 200 ml sherry vinegar 200 ml dry white wine 110 gm (½ cup) caster sugar ¼ Spanish onion, thinly sliced Juice of 1 orange, thinly peeled rind of ½ 2 cloves 1 garlic clove, thinly sliced 1 fresh bay leaf 1 cinnamon quill 450 gm pitted cherries (about 480gm unpitted)   Sour-cherry stuffing 1 tbsp olive oil ½ Spanish onion, finely chopped 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped 250 gm coarse light rye breadcrumbs 80 gm dried sour cherries 50 gm roasted pine nuts Juice and finely grated rind of 1 orange and 1 lemon


  • 01
  • For pickled cherries, stir ingredients except cherries and 100ml water in a saucepan over medium-high heat until sugar dissolves. Add cherries, bring to a simmer, then reduce to medium and simmer until cherries are just tender (6-8 minutes). Transfer to a sterile jar and refrigerate for at least 2 days before using. Pickled cherries will keep refrigerated for up to a month.
  • 02
  • For sour-cherry stuffing, heat oil in a small saucepan over medium-high heat, then sauté onion and garlic until tender and translucent (4-5 minutes), then tip into a bowl to cool. Stir in remaining ingredients and season to taste.
  • 03
  • Preheat oven to 190C. Fill turkey cavity with stuffing, truss legs, then rub bird all over with butter and season well. Place breast-side up in a large roasting pan, add stock to pan and roast, basting occasionally with pan juices, until golden brown and juices run clear when thigh is pierced with a skewer or internal temperature reaches 74C on a meat thermometer when tested in thigh and breast (2¾-3 hours; cover with foil if turkey browns too quickly). Remove from pan, cover loosely with foil and rest for 30 minutes.
  • 04
  • Meanwhile, simmer pan juices over medium-high heat until reduced to a thick sauce consistency (10-12 minutes), squeeze in a little lemon juice and season to taste. Serve with roast turkey and pickled cherries.

At A Glance

  • Serves 8 - 10 people
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At A Glance

  • Serves 8 - 10 people

Featured in

Dec 2015

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