Bourbon and Mustard Glazed Turkey
1 whole turkey (14-pound) with giblets
1/4 teaspoon salt or to taste
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, or to taste
12 cups Cornbread Dressing
3/4 cup bourbon
1/4 cup Dijon mustard or spicy brown mustard
1/4 cup brown sugar, packed
3 tablespoons cornstarch
1 teaspoon vegetable oil - preferably canola oil
1 onion, chopped
1 carrot, chopped
3 1/2 cups reduced-sodium chicken stock, defatted
2 cloves garlic, unpeeled
3 sprigs fresh parsley
3 sprigs thyme
7 black peppercorns
1 cup water
2 tablespoons Dijon mustard or spicy brown mustard
1 teaspoon brown sugar
A glaze of bourbon and mustard is sweetened with brown sugar and is rubbed under and brushed over the turkey skin to infuse the roasting meat with a subtle richness.
Estimated Cooking Time: 5 hours 30 minutes.
Preheat oven to 325 degrees F (165 degrees C). Place a lightly oiled rack on the bottom of a large roasting pan. Lightly oil a baking dish.
Remove giblets and neck from turkey cavity and reserve for the stock. (Discard the liver.) Remove any visible fat from the turkey. Rinse it inside and out with cold water and pat dry. Season the cavity with salt and pepper.
Spoon about half of the Corn Bread Stuffing into the turkey and neck cavities, securing the neck cavity with a skewer. Transfer the remaining stuffing to the prepared baking dish, cover with aluminum foil and refrigerate.
For the bourbon-and-mustard glaze, stir together in a small bowl one-third of the bourbon, the first amount of mustard and the first amount of brown sugar. With your fingers, separate turkey skin from the breast meat, taking care not to tear the skin or pierce the meat. Rub about half the glaze under the skin onto the breast meat; set aside the remaining glaze. Season the bird with salt and pepper.
Tie the drumsticks together and tuck wing tips behind the back. Place the bird, breast-side up, in the prepared roasting pan. Cover with lightly oiled aluminum foil and roast for 2 1/2 hours. Remove the foil, brush the turkey all over with some of the reserved glaze and baste with pan juices. Continue roasting, uncovered, 1 1/2 to 2 hours longer, brushing with glaze and basting from time to time. The turkey is done when a meat thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the thigh registers 180 degrees F (82 degrees C) and registers 165 degrees F (74 degrees C) when inserted into the stuffing.
To make giblet stock: While the turkey is roasting, heat oil over medium-high heat in a medium-sized saucepan. Add the giblets, neck, onions and carrots; cook, stirring occasionally, for 10 to 15 minutes, or until well browned. Add chicken stock, garlic, parsley, thyme, peppercorns and water; bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low and simmer for 30 minutes. Strain through a fine sieve. (The original recipe yields about 2 1/2 cups stock.) Chill until ready to use. Skim off fat.
To make gravy: When the turkey is done, transfer it to a carving board. Scoop the stuffing into a serving bowl, cover and keep warm. Place the dish of extra stuffing in the oven to heat. Cover the turkey loosely with aluminum foil and let rest for 15 to 30 minutes before carving.
Meanwhile, pour the drippings from the roasting pan through a strainer into a small bowl, then chill in the freezer so that the fat can be skimmed off. Add the remaining bourbon to the roasting pan and cook, stirring and scraping up any brown bits, for about 1 minute. Strain into a medium saucepan. Add the giblet stock and bring to a simmer. Skim off fat from the chilled pan juices before adding to the pan. In a small bowl, dissolve cornstarch in 1/4 cup water (per original recipe); slowly add to the simmering sauce, whisking until slightly thickened. Stir in the second amount of mustard and second amount of brown sugar. Taste and adjust seasonings.
Remove string from turkey and carve, discarding skin. Serve with gravy and stuffing.