Golden roast turkey

We’ve opted to cook the stuffing separately, but you can stuff the neck area and cavity of the turkey before roasting. If you do it this way, the stuffing will absorb lots of tasty juices

Ingredients (Serves 4-6)

  • 1 x 4.5-5.4kg/10-12lb turkey (such as Bernard Matthews Golden Norfolk Free-range)
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 225g/8oz lean back bacon
  • 10-12 peeled shallots
  • Roasted or chargrilled red and yellow peppers and courgettes to serve

For the stuffing

  • 450g/1lb lean back bacon (with fat removed), cut into small pieces
  • 100g/4oz fresh wholemeal breadcrumbs
  • 100g/4oz chopped walnuts
  • 1 large onion, peeled and finely chopped
  • 50g/2oz chopped fresh parsley
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 large free-range egg, beaten


Preheat the oven to 220°C, 425°F, Gas 7.

To make the stuffing, put the bacon pieces, breadcrumbs, walnuts, onion, parsley and black pepper in a bowl, stir in the beaten egg and bind together. Set aside. Arrange two large sheets of foil across a turkey roasting tin, one across the other. Lay the turkey on the foil and season with freshly ground black pepper.

Cut off any fat from the bacon rashers and lay it across the turkey breast with the rashers overlapping.

Place the shallots around the turkey, then wrap the bird in the foil, making a parcel with an airspace above it. Ensure the corners are firmly sealed to retain the moisture.

Cook the turkey in the preheated oven for 3- 31⁄2 hours (depending on the weight of the bird). Roast the stuffing separately in the preheated oven at the same time as you roast the potatoes and parsnips.

To test if the turkey is cooked, pierce the thickest part of the leg with a skewer or the point of a sharp knife – the juices should run clear. If not, return to the oven for a further 15 minutes then test again. When cooked, remove the turkey from the oven, cover with a tent of foil and leave in a warm place to rest. Remove the bacon rashers before carving.

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