The Thanksgiving Turkey

November 5, 2016

Since Ethan (our assistant winemaker) joined the family, we have been enjoying amazing turkeys at Thanksgiving. Ethan has perfected his recipe over the years for his most favorite holiday. His turkeys are flavorful and moist. It is for this reason that it is our family’s favorite dish…we have great, delicious sides, but the turkey is the star of the show. About 2 years ago, we figured out that our 2012 Zinfandel, because it’s not heavy in alcohol or sugar, works perfectly with turkey. It has the right amount of red berries on the palate such as pomegranate and raspberry that it marries nicely with the savory, herbaceous-ness of the turkey. In fact, for Cecily, it replaces the cranberry sauce. With our 2014 Zinfandel, coming soon, it is a little bigger than our 2012 vintage, but we feel it will still go wonderfully with the turkey. Mmm…we’re ready for holidays!



Ethan’s Turkey




Whole Turkey


Slivered Garlic Cloves (enough for 15-20 slivers)


Your Choice of Herbs (Rosemary, Sage, Thyme, Parsley), chopped


Pepper, Salt, Paprika, Favorite Rub


Olive Oil


2 TBSP of all-purpose flour


Optional Citrus, Apples, Onions, Leeks


1 Oven Bag for Turkeys



Preheat oven to 350° F


Chop fresh garlic cloves and herbs.



Rinse the turkey and pick off any stray feathers. Remove giblets (we use these for the gravy). Pat dry the turkey.


Make small knife cuts into turkey through the skin and into the meat. Insert a sliver of garlic and herbs. Repeat this all over the outside of the turkey.


Sprinkle all over the turkey: pepper, salt (if you want), paprika, and any rub you enjoy. We like an apple wood smoked rub.


If you want to fill the cavity with onions, leeks, apples, or citrus (like oranges)…this would be the time. Remember to fill the neck cavity too. Make sure to use ties or meat needles to help close the cavities.


Now massage olive oil onto the outside of the turkey.Tie or use needles to hold the cavity closed.


Might want to get another person to help with this part. Take an oven bag (Reynolds). Sprinkle the bottom of a turkey size oven bag with flour. Carefully place the turkey in the bag. Seal bag (comes with ties) and poke several holes in it with a fork.


Use the weight chart on the back of the box to determine baking time. Usually, it takes 3-3 1/2 hours.




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