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Cider Brined Turkey with Caramelized Onion Gravy

From Our Kitchen

Preheat oven to 400ºF


1 qt. apple cider
1 cup salt
1 cup maple syrup

For Turkey
1 yellow onion, chopped
2 carrots, peeled and chopped
4 stalks celery
3 cloves garlic
handful thyme, parsley, and sage sprigs
2 bay leaves
¼ cup oil

For Gravy
⅓ cup all purpose flour
1 yellow onion, thinly sliced


Whisk together the brining ingredients. Pour into a container (bucket, cooler, bag) large enough to hold turkey and liquid. Add turkey and enough water to just cover the turkey. Refrigerate turkey and allow to brine for 12-24 hours. Remove turkey from brine and pat dry before cooking.

Place onion, carrots, celery, garlic, thyme, parsley, sage, and bay leaves in the bottom of a roasting pan along with a quart of water. Place turkey on top and brush with oil, cover with foil. Roast for 30 minutes. Reduce heat to 325ºF. Roast another 2 hours, basting every ½ hour. Remove foil and cook until a thermometer registers 160-165ºF, about 30-40 minutes.

When turkey is ready, remove from pan and keep warm. Strain liquid from pan and discard vegetables. Separate fat from liquid. Reserve ⅓ cup fat, discard the rest. Place roasting pan on stove at low heat. Add reserved fat and scrape the bottom of pan. Add sliced onion and cook until golden brown, about 10-12 minutes (if you prefer, brown the onions ahead in a sauté pan). Add flour and cook until the “roux” browns slightly, about 4-5 minutes. Slowly whisk in reserved cooking liquid. Cook until thickened. And yes, lumps are alright.