Chefs' Recipes

Braised turkey with brown rice and broccolini

Australian Gourmet Traveller recipe for braised turkey with brown rice and broccolini.
Braised turkey with brown rice and broccolini

Braised turkey with brown rice and broccolini

William Meppem
4H 15M
5H 15M

“The working title for this recipe was ‘turkey-hater’. I don’t actually hate turkeys but in my experience they are not the most delicious of birds. Over the years I’ve attempted many times to master the dreaded Christmas turkey and it’s always had my measure; the breast is juicy but the leg is tough or the breast is dry and the leg tender. But I think with this recipe I’ve finally had success.” You’ll need to begin this recipe a day ahead.


Brown rice and broccolini



1.Rinse turkey under cold running water and pat dry with absorbent paper. Carefully remove legs through the joint with a sharp knife and refrigerate legs until required. Remove backbone and wish bone (discard), refrigerate turkey buffe until required. (Alternatively, you could ask a butcher to prepare the buffe for you.)
2.Preheat oven to 160C. Roast spices on a small oven tray, shaking occasionally, until fragrant and lightly roasted (8-10 minutes). Cool, coarsely grind in a mortar and pestle, then stir through salt. Place legs in a non-reactive container to fit snugly, scatter with salt mixture, rub into legs, cover and refrigerate overnight for flavours to develop.
3.Place a large steamer over a large saucepan of water. Rinse legs briefly under cold water and pat dry with absorbent paper. Place on a piece of baking paper in steamer and steam until very tender (1-1½ hours). Cool to room temperature and refrigerate until required.
4.Combine chorizo, shallot and 3 litres water in a large saucepan, bring to the simmer over low heat and skim occasionally until stock is well-flavoured (1-1½ hours). Strain through a fine sieve (discard solids) and set aside.
5.Place turkey buffe in a saucepan large enough to fit snugly. Pour over stock to cover (add water if necessary) and cover with a round of baking paper. Bring to the simmer over low heat, then simmer for 10 minutes. Cover with a tight-fitting lid, remove from heat, set aside until cooked through (45 minutes-1 hour). Just before serving, remove turkey and thickly slice. Season stock to taste with salt, pepper and lemon juice, keep warm.
6.Meanwhile, for brown rice and broccolini, rinse rice under cold running water, place in a saucepan with 500ml water and a pinch of salt. Bring to the boil over high heat, simmer over medium heat for 5 minutes, reduce heat to low, cover and cook until rice is tender (25-30 minutes). Heat butter in a saucepan over medium heat, add almonds, stir occasionally until toasted (3-5 minutes). Stir though rice, broccolini, olive oil and lemon juice, season to taste, keep warm.
7.Heat vegetable oil in a large deep-sided saucepan or deep-fryer to 180C. Dip turkey legs in cold water then potato flour and deep-fry until crisp (5-6 minutes; be careful as hot oil will spit). Drain, and when cool enough to handle, shred meat (discard skin and bone), season to taste, keep warm.
8.Divide rice mixture among bowls, top with sliced turkey breast and crisp leg meat, pour broth over and serve hot, scattered with wild fennel pollen.

Potato flour is available from select health-food shops. Wild fennel pollen is available from select delicatessens and online at


This recipe is from the December 2010 issue of


Drink Suggestion: The best well-cellared Hunter Valley semillon you can find. Drink suggestion by Max Allen


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