If (like me) white meat is your favorite part of the bird, if you tremble at the thought of carving a whole turkey, or if you're planning a small Thanksgiving, minus the extended family, you'll love Ina Garten's roast turkey roulade.
It's like an enormous jelly roll—except a turkey breast stands in for the cake, and a boozy stuffing of dried fruits and Italian sausage acts as the jelly. It's boneless, it's moist, and, best of all, it needs only two hours in the oven.
- Yield:6 or 7
- 3/4 cup large-diced dried figs, stems removed
- 3/4 cup dried cranberries
- 1/2 cup Calvados or brandy
- 4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) unsalted butter
- 1 1/2 cups diced onions (2 onions)
- 1 cup (1/2-inch-diced) celery (3 stalks)
- 3/4 pound pork sausage, casings removed (sweet and hot mixed)
- 1 1/2 tablespoons chopped fresh rosemary leaves
- 3 tablespoons pine nuts, toasted
- 3 cups Pepperidge Farm herb-seasoned stuffing mix
- 1 1/2 cups chicken stock, preferably homemade
- 1 extra-large egg, beaten
- Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 1 whole (2 halves) turkey breast, boned and butterflied (5 pounds)
- 3 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
Place the dried figs and cranberries in a small saucepan and pour over the Calvados and 1/2 cup water. Bring the mixture to a boil over medium heat, then lower the heat and simmer for 2 minutes. Remove from the heat and set aside.
Meanwhile, melt the butter in a large (12-inch) skillet over medium heat. Add the onions and celery and saute until softened, about 5 minutes.
Add the sausage, crumbling it into small bits with a fork, and saute, stirring frequently, for 10 minutes, until cooked and browned.
Add the figs and cranberries with the liquid, the chopped rosemary, and pine nuts, and cook for 2 more minutes. Scrape up the brown bits with a wooden spoon.
Place the stuffing mix in a large bowl. Add the sausage mixture, chicken stock, egg 1 teaspoon salt, and 1/2 teaspoon pepper and stir well. (The stuffing may be prepared ahead and stored in the refrigerator overnight.)
Preheat the oven to 325 degrees. Place a baking rack on a sheet pan. Lay the butterflied turkey breast skin side down on a cutting board., Sprinkle the meat with 2 teaspoons salt and 1 teaspoon pepper.
Spread the stuffing in a 1/2-inch-thick layer over the meat, leaving a 1/2-inch border on all sides. Don't mound the stuffing or the turkey will be difficult to roll. (Place the leftover stuffing in a buttered gratin dish and bake for the last 45 minutes of roasting alongside the turkey.)
Starting at one end, roll the turkey like a jelly roll and tuck in any stuffing that tries to escape on the sides.
Tie the roast firmly with kitchen twine every 2 inches to make a compact cylinder.
Place the stuffed turkey breast seam side down on the rack on the sheet pan. Brush with the melted butter, sprinkle generously with salt and pepper, and roast for 1 3/4 to 2 hours, until a thermometer reads 150 degrees in the center. (I test in a few places.)
Cover the turkey with aluminum foil and allow it to rest at room temperature for 15 minutes. Carve 1/2-inch-thick slices and serve warm with the extra stuffing.