Bacon wrapped anything is delicious, but turkey? Yes, please!
BACON LATTICE WRAPPED TURKEY:
1 turkey (12-15 pounds)
1 small red onion (peeled, quartered)
1 orange (quartered)
1/2 bunch thyme
3 sprigs sage
2 pounds thick cut bacon (about 25 slices)
1 and 1/2 cups organic chicken stock (plus more if needed)
MAPLE HERB BUTTER:
1 stick unsalted butter (softened)
2 tablespoons maple syrup
1 tablespoon thyme (leaves only, finely chopped)
4 sage leaves (finely chopped)
BACON INFUSED PAN GRAVY:
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 cup turkey drippings
3 cups organic chicken stock
1 tablespoon thyme (leaves only)
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
The night before roasting your turkey, place the turkey on a baking sheet and allow to sit, uncovered in the refrigerator overnight.
Remove the turkey from the refrigerator 2 hours before roasting and allow it to come to room temperature. Preheat the oven to 450ºF.
For the Maple Herb Butter:
In a medium bowl, using a rubber spatula, combine the softened butter, maple syrup, thyme and sage, stirring to combine. Rub the maple herb butter all over the outside of the turkey.
For the Bacon Lattice Wrapped Turkey: Stuff the cavity of the turkey with the onion, orange, thyme and sage sprigs.
For the Maple Herb Butter: In a medium bowl, using a rubber spatula, combine the softened butter, maple syrup, thyme and sage, stirring to combine. Rub the maple herb butter all over the outside of the turkey.
Wrap both of the turkey legs and wings in bacon, using 2 slices per leg and 2 slices per wing to completely cover them. On a piece of parchment paper, line up 7 pieces of bacon, vertically, as close to each other as possible. Starting from the bottom, fold 1 inch of every other strip of bacon up. Then lay one strip of bacon, horizontally, on top of the flat strips of bacon. Unfold the folded pieces of bacon and repeat this process by folding down the pieces that were not previously folded. Place a strip of bacon, horizontally, on top of the folded pieces, and unfold the bacon. Continue this process until you have a tight square of woven bacon. With the parchment paper, invert the bacon onto the breast of the turkey and tuck the ends of the squares into the legs and around the breasts.
Place the turkey on a roasting rack and inside a deep roasting pan. Pour the chicken stock into the bottom of the roasting pan and place in the lower third of the oven to roast for 25 minutes. Lower the temperature to 350ºF and continue to roast until the internal temperature of the turkey reaches 165ºF, about 2 – 2 1/2 hours. Tent with foil if the bacon begins burn. Remove from the oven and allow turkey to rest for at least 30 minutes.
For the Bacon Infused Pan Gravy: Remove 1/4 cup of drippings that have accumulated in the bottom of the roasting pan to a medium sauce pan over medium heat. Whisk in the flour and continue to whisk as the flour cooks, about 1-2 minutes. Stir in the chicken stock and cook until gravy has thickened, about 3-4 minutes. Stir in thyme leaves and season with salt and pepper to taste.
Carve the turkey, cutting through the bacon first, then the meat of the turkey, and serve warm with gravy.
Tip: Get creative! Use a peppered or maple bacon to give your bacon turkey a twist that packs a punch!