Fragrant lemon, orange, garlic, bay and thyme are all put to work in this special turkey recipe from Gordon's Christmas Cookalong LIVE 2012
1 x 5kg turkey
1 bulb of garlic
2 bay leaves
4 sprigs thyme
100g butter, at room temperature
8 rashers of smoked streaky bacon
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
Pre-heat the oven to 220°C/Gas mark 7.
Check the giblets have been removed from the turkey cavity. Season the cavity well with salt and pepper, and place breast side up in a large roasting tray. Quarter the onion, lemon and orange, and halve the garlic horizontally. Stuff the turkey cavity with the lemon, orange, onion, garlic and herbs.
Spread the butter all over the skin. Season well with salt and pepper then drizzle with a little olive oil.
Roast the turkey in the hot oven for 15 minutes. Turn the oven down to 180°C /Gas 4 and allow to cook for a further 20 minutes. Baste the turkey then lay the bacon rashers across the breast to keep it moist. Cook for a further 2 hours 15 minutes (approximately 30 mins per kg), basting frequently.
To test whether your turkey is cooked, insert a skewer into the thickest part of the leg and check that the juices run clear rather than pink. Turkey sizes and oven temperature vary so always check your turkey about 30 minutes before the calculated roasting time. If the juices are pink roast for another 15 minutes and check again. Repeat until the turkey is cooked.
If your turkey is larger than 5kg just remember to give it 15 minutes at 220°C then allow another 30 minutes per kg at 180°C. Once cooked, rest the turkey for at least 45 minutes before carving.