Maple roast turkey
- Extra Special Norfolk Bronze Turkey, about 6kg, with giblets removed
- 2 lemons
- 100g unsalted butter, softened
- 3 shallots, peeled
- 3 large sprigs thyme
- 8 rashers Extra Special Oak Smoked Cured Pancetta
- 3 tbsp maple syrup
- 1/2 level tsp ground cinnamon
- 2 tbsp plain flour
- 400ml hot chicken stock
Remove the turkey from the fridge and leave at room temperature for 1 hour before cooking. Pre-heat the oven to 200C/180C Fan/Gas 6.
Squeeze the juice of 1 of the lemons and mix with 75g of the butter. Reserve the lemon shells. Fry the shallots in the rest of the butter on a low heat for 4 minutes. Set aside to cool.
Put the turkey in a roasting tin, breast-side up. Fill the cavity with the shallots, whole lemon shells and the thyme. Pinch the skin together to close the cavity and secure with a cocktail stick.
Lift the skin around the neck, rub some of the lemon butter over the meat. Rub the rest over the skin, making sure the legs are also well covered.
Arrange the pancetta over the breast in a lattice pattern. Cover loosely with foil, leaving some room for air to circulate. Calculate the cooking time – for turkeys over 4kg, allow 20 minutes per kg, plus 90 minutes. Cook for 40 minutes, then reduce the oven temperature to 180C/160C Fan/Gas 4. Baste every hour.
Meanwhile, mix the maple syrup and cinnamon together. Remove the foil 30 minutes before the end of the cooking time and brush the syrup mixture over the skin and pancetta. Return to the oven, uncovered, for the rest of the cooking time or until cooked. To test if it’s ready, pierce the thickest part of the thigh with a skewer. If the juices are clear, it’s cooked. If they are pink, return it to the oven for another 15 minutes and keep checking until cooked. Once cooked, tilt the turkey so any juices run out into the tin.
Transfer to a platter and cover in foil. Put a tea towel on top to keep it warm and leave to rest for at least 30 minutes.
To make the gravy, skim any fat from the juices in the pan and discard, then stir in the flour. Cook on the hob for 4 minutes, stirring, then gradually stir in the stock. Heat until simmering, stir, then serve.