Spiced and Super Juicy Roast Turkey
6 quarts water
1 large orange or 2 smaller, quartered
1 cup kosher salt of 1/2 cup table salt
3 tablespoons black peppercorns
1 bouquet garni
1 cinnamon stick
1 tablespoon caraway seeds
4 star anise
2 tablespoons white mustard seeds
1 cup sugar
2 unpeeled onions, quartered
1 x 2-3 inch piece unpeeled ginger, cut into 6 slices
1/4 cup maple syrup
1/4 cup honey
stalks from medium bunch of parsley (optional)
12 lb turkey
For the Basting Glaze:
1/3 cup goose fat or butter
3 tablespoons maple syrup
1. Put the water into your largest cooking pot or bucket. Squeeze the juice from the orange quarters into the water before you put the peels in. Then added all the other ingredients, stirring to combine the salt, sugar, syrup, and honey.
2. Remove any string from the turkey, shake it free, remove the giblets, if not already done, and put them in the refrigerator. Put the bird in the liquid, topping up with more water if it is not completely submerged. Keep covered in a cold place, even outside overnight or for a day or two before you cook it. When you are ready to cook it take it out of its liquid and wipe it dry with paper towels. Preheat the oven to 400F.
3. Melt the goose fat (or butter) and maple syrup together slowly over a low heat. Paint the turkey with the glaze before roasting in the oven, and baste periodically through the cooking time. Roast for 2 1/2 hours.
4. When you think it's ready, pierce the turkey with the point of a sharp knife where the body meets the leg, and if the juices run clear, it's cooked. If it is still pink, cook it until the the juices run clear, or use an instant-read thermometer. Take the turkey out of the oven, and let it sit for 20-40 minutes, or longer if you like, before you carve it.