- 2 turkeys (10 to 12 pounds each), neck and giblets discarded
- 3 cups kosher salt (do not use regular table salt)
- 2 cups granulated sugar
- 2 unpeeled medium onions, coarsely chopped
- 2 unpeeled medium carrots, coarsely chopped
- 2 stalks celery stalks, coarsely chopped
- 2 tablespoons melted butter
- 1 cup dry white wine or vermouth
- 4 cups low-sodium chicken broth
- ¼ cup cornstarch
- The night before roasting, dissolve salt and sugar in 3 gallons of cold water in a large, clean ice chest or similar container in a cold spot, such as an unheated basement or garage. For those in warm climates, add ice packs to keep turkeys cool. Add turkeys, breast-side down; cover and let stand about 12 hours. (This brining keeps the turkey from drying out and seasons it right down to the bone.) Drain. Rinse turkeys and pat dry.
- About five hours before serving, set oven to 425 degrees and adjust oven rack to lower-middle position. Place turkey No. 1 breast-side down and cut out the back with kitchen shears. Open up turkey and turn it breast-side up, pressing on it with your palms so it lies flat. Place turkey, skin-side up, on a lipped cookie sheet over a bed of half the chopped vegetables. Brush turkey with butter.
- Roast until a meat thermometer inserted into the thigh registers 175 degrees, 1 to 1 1/2 hours. Watch vegetables and pan drippings throughout – they should be kept dry enough to brown and produce the rich brown goo with which to brush Turkey No. 2 and make a rich gravy, but moist enough to keep from burning. So add water as needed throughout the cooking.
- Remove pan from oven and transfer turkey to a cutting board; reserve vegetables and pan juices for Turkey No. 2. Let the bird rest 30 minutes to 1 hour before carving, to allow the meat to firm up. Carve, transferring slices to an ovenproof serving platter or baking pan. Cover with aluminum foil. Refrigerate or set in a cool spot (below 40 degrees) until mealtime. Gently rewarm, covered, on platter or baking pan.
- Immediately after removing the first turkey, lower the oven temperature to 400 degrees and adjust oven rack to lowest position. Scrape vegetables and pan drippings from Turkey No. 1 into a roasting pan. Set a V-rack in the pan. Place remaining raw vegetables in the cavity of Turkey No. 2, then tie legs together with kitchen string for a nicer presentation. Set turkey, breast-side down, on rack. Brush with pan drippings from Turkey No. 1.
- Roast 1 hour. Remove from oven; baste back and sides with pan drippings. Using two wads of paper towels, carefully turn breast-side up and baste. Keep roasting until a thermometer inserted into the leg registers 175 degrees, 1 to 1 1/2 hours longer. Again, watch vegetables and drippings throughout and add water as needed. Transfer turkey to a platter for display (and then for seconds and leftovers).
- For gravy: Set roasting pan over 2 burners on medium-high heat. Add wine and, using a wooden spoon, stir to loosen brown bits. Strain contents of pan through a large strainer into a saucepan. Add broth and bring to a boil. Whisk cornstarch with 1/2 cup water (or 1/2 cup flour with 1 cup water), then gradually whisk into pan juices. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to low and simmer until thickened. Serve immediately.
- Yield:2 turkeys
- 845 Calories
- 36g Fat
- 20g Carbs
- 102g Protein