Print Recipe

Maple Bourbon Tamarind Roast Turkey

Prep Time2 hrs
Cook Time4 hrs
Total Time6 hrs

Ingredients

Brine

  • 8 cups water more as needed
  • 24 oz good-quality bourbon or whiskey
  • 2 cups pure maple syrup
  • 1 cup fine kosher salt
  • 2 large onions quartered
  • 10 bay leaves
  • 10 cloves of garlic smashed
  • 1/4 cup whole peppercorns
  • 2 tbsp whole cloves
  • 12-15 lb NATURAL turkey remove the insides

Tamarind Roast Turkey

  • 1 large onion quartered
  • 6 cloves of garlic
  • large bunch of herbs tied together with kitchen string
  • 8 oz tamarind pulp
  • 1/2 cup boiling water
  • 1 stick unsalted butter melted
  • 1/2 cup honey
  • 6 cups chicken broth
  • water as needed

Gravy

  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup warm water
  • 1/4 cup unsalted butter
  • 2 cups chicken broth more as needed

Instructions

  • To a large pot, add the water, bourbon, maple syrup, salt, onions, bay leaves, garlic, whole peppercorns, and cloves. Bring the mixture to a boil and stir frequently until the salt is dissolved. Remove from heat and let the brine cool completely.
  • Add the turkey to a large pot or bag. Make sure that the pot is big enough to hold the turkey, but not so big that when the turkey is covered with the liquid it is not completely submerged. You want the turkey to be completely submerged. Cover the turkey with the brine and refrigerate for 12-16 hours.
  • Remove the turkey from the brine and rinse inside and out. Pat the turkey dry and set it on the rack of your roasting pan. Place the turkey back in the refrigerator and let it chill for 12-16 hours (see note below).
  • Remove the turkey from the fridge and stuff it with the onion, garlic and herbs.
  • To a small bowl, combine the tamarind pulp and water. Let it soften for a couple of minutes and then break the tamarind apart with your fingers. Let it stand for another couple of minutes. Push the tamarind mixture through a mesh strainer into a separate bowl, getting rid of any solids. To the bowl with tamarind, also add the butter and honey. Whisk to combine and then brush the mixture all over the turkey so that it is fully saturated. Add the chicken broth to the roasting pan, making sure that the bottom of the turkey isn't touching the broth.
  • NOTE: You may not need the full 6 cups at this exact moment, but you will need to add more as it evaporated. Once you run out of the 6 cup of chicken broth, and it has fully evaporated, just add water until the turkey is done roasting.
  • Place the turkey into a preheated oven of 350 degrees F and roast the turkey until it reaches an internal temperature of 160 degrees F (when you remove it from the oven, it will continue to bake for a little while), about 15-20 minutes per pound. If you find that the turkey is darkening TOO quickly, feel free to cover it with foil so that it does not burn.
  • Remove the turkey from the oven and transfer the turkey to a large cutting board. Create a foil tent to cover the turkey and let it rest for 20-30 minutes.
  • Place the roasting pan over two of the burners on your stove, set on medium heat. In a small bowl, whisk together the flour and warm water to form a slurry of sorts. Whisk the slurry into the juices in the roasting pan. Add the butter and chicken broth and continue to whisk until the gravy is thick. Add more chicken broth as needed, and season to taste. Set aside until you are ready to serve.
  • Carve your turkey and place it out on a platter. Cover until you are ready to serve. Enjoy!

Note

  • Please note that it is best to use a completely natural turkey if you plan on brining it. A lot of mainstream pre-packaged turkeys come saturated in salt and other preservatives. If you use a turkey like this, it will come out VERY salty. Read the packaging before purchasing or ordering your turkey. Most natural and/or organic turkeys should be void of these preservatives.
    You can cut the prep time in half if you plan to not letting your turkey dry out for 12 hours. You can just as easily pat it dry. I find that letting it dry out in the refrigerator for 12 more hours makes for a MUCH crispier skin.