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Simplest Roast Turkey – recipe

The trick to this minimalist roast turkey is allowing it to air-dry overnight in the refrigerator, resulting in super crispy skin.

Simplest Roast Turkey

Contributed by Dana Cowin

Cooking time: 5 hours

Serves: 10-12

Course: Main

Skill level: Easy


  • One 13- to 15-pound turkey (6kg-7kg)
  • 2 tablespoons salt, plus more for seasoning
  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil (50ml)
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper


  1. Rinse the turkey inside and out under cold water and pat it thoroughly dry with paper towels.
  2. Season the cavity with 1/2 tablespoon of the salt, then season the outside with the remaining 1 1/2 tablespoons of salt.
  3. Put the turkey on a large plate and refrigerate, uncovered, for at least 8 hours and up to 24 hours.
  4. Let the turkey stand at room temperature for 1 hour before roasting.
  5. Preheat the oven to 425° (210° Celsius).
  6. Rub the turkey all over with the olive oil, season with salt and the pepper and transfer to a large roasting pan.
  7. Roast for about 1 hour, until lightly golden. Reduce the oven temperature to 375° (190° Celsius) and roast for 2 to 2 1/4 hours longer, until an instant-read thermometer inserted in an inner thigh registers 165° (75° Celsius); cover the breast with foil if it browns too quickly.
  8. Transfer the turkey to a carving board and let rest for at least 45 minutes before carving and serving.

Wine: Ray Isle gives us his top tips for finding the perfect bottles for Thanksgiving.

A recipe from Food & Wine Magazine

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