Valli Little’s turkey with fruit stuffing and duck fat potatoes

A mixed fruit stuffing with duck fat potatoes will add all the elements you need to create the perfect Christmas turkey meal.

4.5kg whole turkey
100g unsalted butter, melted
1/4 cup (35g) plain flour
1/2 cup (125ml) dry sherry
1L (4 cups) Massel Chicken Style Liquid Stock
1/4 cup (100g) quince or red currant jelly

1 orange
2/3 cup (100g) dried cranberries
2 tbs olive oil
1 onion, chopped
1/2 cup (125ml) chicken stock
350g fresh white breadcrumbs
1/3 cup (55g) blanched almonds, roasted, chopped
1/2 cup (95g) chopped dried figs
1 green apple, coarsely grated
1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp ground allspice
1 tbs chopped rosemary leaves

1.5kg small King Edward potatoes, peeled
1/4 cup (35g) plain flour
200g duck fat
2 garlic bulbs, halved widthways
2 rosemary sprigs
2 tbs sea salt flakes
1 tbs chopped rosemary leaves
Finely grated zest of 1 orange

1. Pat turkey dry with paper towel and refrigerate uncovered overnight. The following day, stand turkey at room temperature for 45 minutes to take the chill out of the bird.
2. Preheat the oven to 180°C. For the stuffing, boil orange in a small saucepan of water over high heat for 1 hour or until tender. Drain, then whiz in a food processor until smooth.
3. Place cranberries in a small heatproof bowl, cover with boiling water and set aside for 10 minutes to rehydrate. Heat the oil in a frypan over medium heat. Cook onion, stirring, for 6 minutes or until soft but not coloured.
4. Increase heat to high, add stock and bring to the boil. Transfer to a heatproof bowl with breadcrumbs, drained cranberries, orange pulp and remaining stuffing ingredients.
5. Season well and stir to combine. Spread stuffing over a baking tray, cover and chill for 20 minutes or until cooled (you can prepare your stuffing the day before serving if you like). Stuff turkey cavity and neck cavity with stuffing.
6. Tie turkey legs together with kitchen string. Tuck wings under body.
7. Place turkey in a flameproof roasting pan. Brush with melted butter. Cover with greased baking paper then completely cover with foil, tucking foil under the rim of the roasting pan to seal.
8. Roast for 2 hours, then uncover turkey and brush with cooking juices. Return to oven and roast, uncovered, for a further 1 hour or until golden. Test to see if the turkey is done by piercing the thickest part of the thigh with a skewer, the juices should run clear.
9. Remove turkey from oven and rest, loosely covered with foil, for 20 minutes.
10. Meanwhile, for the potatoes, in the first 1 hour of cooking the turkey, place potatoes in a saucepan of cold, salted water, and bring to the boil over high heat.
11. Reduce heat to medium and cook for 8 minutes or until tender. Drain, then return to pan and shake well over medium heat to dry out and rough up the edges (this will help them to crisp up when roasting). Add flour to pan and toss to coat.
12. In the second hour of cooking the turkey, place duck fat in a roasting pan, and warm on the top shelf of the oven for 5 minutes or until melted and hot.
13. Remove, add potatoes, garlic and rosemary sprigs and gently turn to coat, return to the top shelf of the oven, and roast, basting and turning a few times during cooking, for 90 minutes or until golden and crisp (if the potatoes need more colour after your turkey has finished cooking, move potatoes into the centre of the oven, increase oven to 200°C and check every 10 minutes or until golden).
14. To make the gravy, skim excess fat from the turkey pan then place pan over medium-low heat. Add the flour, whisking until combined.
15. Add the sherry and stock, and cook, whisking, for 2-4 minutes until smooth.
16. Increase heat to high, then add the quince jelly and cook, stirring occasionally, for a further 2-3 minutes until thickened. Strain into a serving jug and keep warm.
17. Combine sea salt flakes, chopped rosemary and orange zest in a bowl, then rub salt mixture with your fingertips to release oils from the rosemary and zest.
18. Transfer the potatoes and garlic to a platter and sprinkle with some of the orange and rosemary salt.
19. To carve turkey, remove the legs and joint into thighs and drumsticks. Run a sharp knife down both sides of the backbone and carefully remove the breasts in one whole piece, then remove stuffing.
20. Slice breasts, drizzle with the gravy and serve with potatoes, garlic and fruit stuffing.

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