Lemon & herb-basted simple roast turkey

Sometimes the best recipes are the simplest ones. This lemon and herb-blasted roast is a real classic.  Once mastered you can adapt, experimenting with different herbs, over time to suit your particular tastes.

Remove the bird from the fridge 1hr before cooking to allow it to come to room temperature. Thoroughly wipe the turkey inside and out and remember to remove the giblets!

Heat the oven to 220C (that’s gas mark 7).

Starting at the neck-end of the bird, carefully push your fingers between the skin and flesh on the breast, loosening the skin.

Mix butter, lemon zest, herbs and garlic together and season. Push the flavoured butter under the skin and spread over the flesh. Smooth the skin back over the breast.

Stuff the neck-end of the bird with the stuffing.  Secure the skin underneath with a skewer. Weigh the turkey and calculate the cooking time – it will need about 40 mins for every 1kg.

Transfer the bird to a roasting tin, cover loosely with foil and place in the middle of the oven.

Cook for 20 mins, then reduce the temperature to 180C or gas mark 4 for the remainder of the time.

Remove foil for the last 30 mins so that it becomes nice and crispy.

Check if the turkey is cooked by piercing the thickest part of the thigh with a skewer. If the juices run clear, it’s cooked. If they are pink, return it to the oven for another 15 mins, then test again.

If using a meat thermometer, which we advise then it should read 80C for the thighs, and the breast should be 75C.

Remove the cooked turkey from the tin, and place on a serving platter.

Cover with foil and leave to rest for 30-45 mins before carving.