12 Days of Christmas Tips-7th Day: Cooking the Turkey

Posted by on Dec 14, 2013 in Blog, Katherine Frelon's Tips | 0 comments

There are many opinions about roasting a turkey, but I recommend cooking the turkey upside down, having been soaked in brine over night, drained from it’s bath whilst the coffee is on then rubbed with soft butter and put into a large foil tin.

Cooking the turkey this way means it will reduce the cooing time by half – yes, you heard right, half.

Try my recipe for turkey brining and I promise you will have the most delicious turkey your guests will simply devour. And make sure to try my delicious gravy recipe as well.

briningTurkey Brining Recipe


For a 10kg Turkey you will need: 

  • You need a big plastic bucket or trug
  • 5 oranges, quartered
  • 8 onions, quartered
  • A massive bunch of parsley, doesn’t matter if it’s curly or flat
  • 100g black pepper corns, lightly crushed in a pestle and mortar
  •  6 pieces of cassia bark
  • 15 fresh bay leaves
  • 1 bunch lemon thyme
  • 100g green anise or caraway seeds
  • 15 cloves, lightly bruised with the pestle and mortar
  • 100g allspice berries lightly crushed in the pestle and mortar
  • 20 star anise
  • 400ml maple syrup
  • 200g sliced fresh ginger
  • 4 bulbs of big garlic, each clove smashed with the back of a large knife
  • 500g sea salt
  • 10 litres of water
  • 1 bottle of sweet wine


Plunge the turkey into the brining juices and leave in a cool place over night. Cover with a large plate or board and put a weight on the top. Storing it outside for the night is fine, so long as it is weighed down to stop any wildlife enjoying an early Christmas munch! Take out first thing in the morning and bring inside to warm up to room temperature.Melt goose/duck  fat or butter together with 200ml maple syrup.

Preheat oven to 200oC

Cook the turkey upside down covered loosely with foil for 4 hrs only.Turn the oven down to 180oC after 45 mins. Baste throughout cooking time and 40 mins before the end of cooking turn the bird over and take off the foil. Baste again.Take the turkey out and cover very loosely with foil and leave to rest for at least 45mins or until needed.If you are worried about the short cooking time then test with a skewer or a meat thermometer – the juices should run clear or the temp should be 71oC. If you a stuffing the turkey add an extra 30 mins, not l more.

So savory and delicious but do make certain to have plenty of appetizers at the ready for your Christmas guests!


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