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Published: Monday, 11/10/2008

Basic Stuffed Roast Turkey

1 12-to-14-pound turkey with giblets

2 tablespoons kosher salt

2 tablespoons dried sage

1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

18 to 19 cups stuffing of choice

Heat oven to 325 degrees. Remove giblets and reserve for broth. Rinse and dry turkey. Rub inside and out with salt, sage, and pepper. Loosely pack central cavity and hollow under-flap of skin at top of breast with 6 to 7 cups of stuffing, tucking flap under the bird. Spoon remaining stuffing into a buttered baking dish, cover, and refrigerate.

Set stuffed turkey in a large roasting pan, tucking wings under bird. Set turkey in oven to roast. After 3 hours of roasting, remove extra stuffing from refrigerator and douse with giblet broth. Cover dish with aluminum foil and bake with turkey for 1 hour, uncovering dish for last 15 minutes to brown top.

Turkey is done when an instant-read thermometer inserted into thickest part of thigh, away from bone, registers 170 to 180 degrees and juices run clear when you remove the thermometer, about 4 hours (18 to 20 minutes per pound for a stuffed bird). If the skin browns too much before turkey is done, cover bird loosely with foil. If turkey fails to brown evenly or sufficiently, use a pastry brush to paint skin with some of the brown juices in roasting pan.

Remove turkey from oven, let it rest in pan for 5 minutes, then carefully transfer to platter. Tent loosely with foil and let rest while you make gravy and finish other dishes.

Yield: 10 to 12 servings

Source: How to Cook a Turkey

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