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Roast turkey breast with Tudor stuffing recipe

Roast turkey breast with Tudor stuffing recipe

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  • Recipes
  • Dish type
  • Side dish
  • Stuffing

The Elizabethans made lavish use of spices and fruits in their cooking. You could add the stuffing under the skin of a turkey breast crown.

7 people made this

IngredientsServes: 4

  • 2 boneless turkey breasts, with skin, about 500g (1lb 2oz) each
  • 60g (2¼ oz) fresh wholemeal breadcrumbs
  • 1 Cox's apple, cored and grated
  • 3 canned anchovy fillets, drained and finely chopped
  • 25g (1oz) seedless raisins, chopped
  • ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ¼ teaspoon ground ginger
  • ¼ teaspoon ground mace
  • Salt and black pepper
  • 1 small egg, beaten
  • Pinch of saffron strands
  • 1 tablespoon honey

MethodPrep:15min ›Cook:1hr15min ›Ready in:1hr30min

  1. Heat the oven to 190°C (375°F, gas mark 5). Place the turkey breasts, skin side down, on a board. Make a cut about halfway through each, down the middle, to open it out slightly.
  2. Put the breadcrumbs, apple, anchovy, raisins, cinnamon, ginger and mace in a bowl and mix. Add salt and pepper to taste, with enough beaten egg to bind the mixture.
  3. Spoon the stuffing onto one turkey breast, then place the second on top, skin side up. Secure with string and place in a roasting tin.
  4. Cover loosely with foil and roast for about 1 hour, until cooked through. Put the saffron in a small bowl with 1 tablespoon boiling water. Leave to soak for a few minutes, then stir in the honey.
  5. Brush the turkey with the saffron and honey glaze and roast, uncovered, for 10-15 minutes, brushing with the glaze occasionally, until golden brown. Serve, sliced, with roast potatoes, parsnips and onions.

Turkey tips

For fail-safe tips and turkey cooking times see our guide to cooking turkey. Also don't forget our turkey gravy recipes.


This stuffing can also be used to stuff the neck-end of a whole turkey.

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Reviews & ratingsAverage global rating:(1)

Reviews in English (2)

Altered ingredient amounts.wrapped Turkey tightly in cling film & tied the ends with string, Poached at 70c for 1 hour & then taken out of the plastic & browned in a hot pan with butter after glazing the saffron honey.-27 Nov 2009

-27 Nov 2009

Christmas Special: 7 Course Easy Christmas Menu

Have you left the planning for your Christmas menu as late as I’ve left this post?? Well here’s a stress free EASY Christmas menu for you! 7 dishes for a Christmas Feast that takes just 1 1/2 hours to prepare. Everything can be prepared in advance and reheats wonderfully, without compromising on crispiness or the meat drying out! I’ve included steps for the order in which to prepare each dish, how and when to reheat etc.

I love to host parties because I love spending quality time with my family and friends plus (this will surprise you…..) I love to cook. But no matter how good my intentions are to plan ahead, I always end up changing my mind at the last minute and scrambling to get organised. People think I’m an organised person – I have lists and lists of lists. But I always end up changing those lists at the last moment!

Such is how this menu evolved. Though I was not hosting an annual Christmas get together with my friends this year, I offered to provide the mains and sides. I told my friends I would keep it simple – something to slap on the BBQ and a few salads. But then the festive spirit hit me.

“Though the cook time for some of these is long, it is low maintenance – no basting and no turning is required.”

The most popular dish of the party – Pork Apple Stuffing in Pancetta Cups!!

No matter how much festive spirit I had, the fact was that it was the day before the party and I had limited shopping and preparation time. And every dish had to be “make ahead” without compromising on flavour or losing crispy skins!

I like this menu because there’s a nice flow to making it. The total active prep time is only 1 1/2 hours and the baking time is very low maintenance – no basting, no turning.

“I was very deliberate with my selection of ingredients to make this cost efficient.”

Here’s a snapshot of what I made. If you scroll down you’ll see photos of each of them.

Easy Maple Sticky Glazed Ham (15 min prep, 1 – 1 1/2 hrs inactive baking, can be made ahead)

Juicy Slow Cooker Turkey Breast (5 min prep, then set and forget, reheats well but best slow cooked overnight on the night before serving)

Festive Duck with Apple Cider Drizzle (5 min prep, 1 1/2 hr inactive baking, reheats very well)

Pork Apple Stuffing in Pancetta Cups (20 min prep and worth every second. Reheats extremely well)

“You just need to commit yourself for 1 1/2 hours. Your kitchen will look like a hurricane swept through it. But I promise, it’s worth it!”

Stuffed Turkey Breast

A festive (and fun!) Thanksgiving dinner alternative.

Hosting Thanksgiving dinner with just a few friends or close family? Don&rsquot worry about roasting a whole bird: Our herb stuffed turkey breast recipe is the perfect way for small parties to celebrate without ending up with weeks of unwanted Thanksgiving leftovers. The recipe starts with a butterflied turkey breast pounded thin (don&rsquot worry, we show you how to butterfly a turkey breast like a pro below!). Then, each cutlet gets a generous portion of stuffing &mdash a fragrant, flavorful combo of shallot, herbs and orange zest &mdash and rolls up into a savory bundle that&rsquos ready for the oven. The best part is that the cooking time for stuffed, rolled turkey breast is much shorter than for a whole bird. It roasts in the oven for just about an hour! With this recipe, it can be simple and stress-free to enjoy the holiday with just a few special people &hellip and maybe one or two Thanksgiving desserts.

Our top tips for stuffed turkey breast:

&bull Choose your sharpest knife to butterfly the turkey breast. It'll make a clean, precise cut and it's less prone to slipping

&bull Use a sliding motion (rather than hammering straight down) when pounding out the butterflied turkey breast, so that the meat spreads out evenly without breaking

&bull Don't have a meat mallet? You can also use a large, heavy pan to pound the turkey breast

Stuffed Turkey Breast

Heat 2 tablespoons canola oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Once hot, add onions and celery and sauté until soft and translucent. Add garlic and garlic and cook for an additional 2 minutes, until fragrant. Add the fresh herbs, cornbread, pecans, cranberries and chicken broth, stirring well with a wooden spoon to fully incorporate. Let flavors marry together and warm on the stovetop for 2-3 minutes. Season stuffing with salt and freshly ground pepper. Remove from heat and let chill slightly.

Carefully remove the skin from the breast of the turkey, being careful not to tear. Place turkey breast, skin side up on a cutting board. Holding a knife parallel to work surface, slice through the breast, almost in half, without cutting it all the way through. Open the breast like a book.

Lay the turkey between two sheets of plastic wrap and pound out using a meat mallet, to an even thickness, about 1/2 to 3/4 inch thick. Remove turkey from plastic wrap, season with salt and pepper, and spread stuffing evenly across the turkey breast, leaving a 3/4 inch border all around the edges.

Roll the turkey breast over the stuffing, creating a uniform log. Do not roll too tight or the stuffing will fall out. Wrap the skin around the breast, hiding the seam of the log. Use kitchen twine to tie and secure the shape, while keeping the stuffing intact. Season the outside of the turkey with salt and pepper.

Roast until a thermometer inserted to the stuffing registers 155 °F, about 45 minutes. Remove from oven and let rest, tented with foil, for 15 minutes. The temperature should reach 165 °F after resting. Trim kitchen twine and slice. Garnish with fresh herbs.

A dickens of a christmas

In the 18th and 19th century, Twelfth Night, the fifth of January, was one of the most important dates in the festive calendar. Twelfth Night was the last feast of the Christmas celebrations ( Epiphany ). The centerpiece of the parties, which involved eating, drinking and playing games was a cake. A forerunner to today’s Christmas cake it evolved from an enriched fruit bread to a more familiar fruit cake decorated with almond and sugar pastes. A dried bean was included in the recipe. Whoever found it was crowned ‘Lord of Misrule’ or ‘King of the Bean’ and presided over the festivities.

Extremely Slow-Roasted Turkey Breast

This preparation rises to the level of foolproof. As cookbook author Andrew Schloss explains in his newest book, "By setting the oven thermostat at the same temperature I want the meat to be done, overcooking becomes theoretically impossible."

It's best to use a roasting pan that is not much larger than the breast itself. If you slow-roast the turkey overnight (starting at midnight or 1 a.m.), it will stay moist and warm enough to serve at a midday or early afternoon meal.

Make Ahead: The seasoning rub can be assembled days in advance cover and store at room temperature. The turkey breast needs to be seasoned and air-dried in the refrigerator for 12 to 24 hours. The seasoned, air-dried breast needs to sit at room temperature for 30 minutes to 1 hour before slow-roasting.

Servings: 8 - 10
Related Recipes

Combine the thyme, basil, rosemary, marjoram, sage, salt and pepper in a small bowl to create a seasoning rub, then rub it all over the turkey breast, including the underside. Refrigerate the turkey, uncovered, for 12 to 24 hours. The skin of the turkey breast will tighten and look dry.

The seasoned, air-dried breast needs to sit at room temperature for 30 minutes to 1 hour before slow-roasting.

Meanwhile, cut the onion into about 8 wedges (from top to bottom), then arrange them to cover the bottom of the roasting pan. Preheat the oven to 450 degrees.

Place the turkey breast (breast meat side up) on the onion in the pan. Drizzle the oil evenly over the breast. Roast for 15 minutes, then reduce the temperature to 175 degrees. Roast for 8 to 9 hours or until the internal temperature of the breast meat, when taken away from the bone, registers 165 to 170 degrees.

Let the turkey rest at room temperature for 10 minutes before carving, or tent it loosely and carve several hours later.

Recipe Summary

  • 1 boneless turkey breast half (2 1/2 to 3 pounds)
  • Coarse salt and freshly ground pepper
  • Sausage and Sour-Cherry Stuffing
  • 6 tablespoons (3/4 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature

Butterfly turkey: Heat oven to 400 degrees. Use a slicing knife and your fingers to remove skin from breast, reserving skin. Turn the breast over (so the side that had the skin is facing down), and lay it flat on the cutting board. Holding the blade of the knife parallel to the board, about halfway down, slice into the thickest portion of the breast. Cut along the length of the breast, but not all the way through. Unfold so the turkey opens like a book. Remove the tough piece of cartilage. Cover with a piece of plastic wrap and pound with a meat mallet until the turkey is of uniform thickness (about 1/2 inch). Season with salt and pepper.

Stuff turkey: Spread stuffing evenly (about 3/4 inch thick) over turkey, leaving a 1-inch border. Starting with one short end, roll into a log, completely enclosing the stuffing, and wrap the reserved skin around the breast, over the seam. Season all over with salt and pepper. Roll in a piece of cheesecloth, and secure both ends with kitchen twine. Tie twine around the roast in four evenly spaced intervals, then rub butter evenly all over cloth.

Roast: Roast on a rimmed baking sheet until an instant-read thermometer inserted in the middle registers 155 degrees, 40 to 50 minutes. Let rest for 10 minutes (the internal temperature should rise to 165 degrees).

Slice and serve: Remove cheesecloth and twine, then place turkey on a cutting board and slice crosswise about 3/4 inch thick.

Turkey breast recipes

Make the most of tender turkey breast with our selection of tasty recipes, including stir-fries, salads, toasties and tabboulehs.

Pancetta-wrapped turkey breast with herby lemon & pine nut stuffing

No need for impressive carving skills with this easy-to-serve dish with creamy gravy

Low-fat turkey bolognese

Swap your usual beef mince with turkey to reduce the fat content of this classic Italian sauce and serve with wholemeal pasta

Roast turkey breast

Cooking for a smaller crowd this Christmas? Try this roast turkey breast as an easy alternative to cooking a whole turkey for your festive dinner

Mediterranean turkey-stuffed peppers

This low-calorie dinner from Joe Wicks is 3 of your 5-a-day, rich in vit C and folate too. Filling the peppers with low-fat turkey breast mince keeps it lean

Roast turkey breast wrapped in bacon

Wrap turkey breast, sausagemeat and cranberry sauce in streaky bacon to make an all-in-one main course that's guaranteed to impress your Christmas dinner guests

Turkey breast fingers with avocado dip

A balanced supper of lean turkey nuggets coated in a crisp herb crust with creamy butter bean, lime and avocado dip

Spinach Tortellini

Strawberry Tart is a traditional Elizabethan recipe for a tart filled with what is effectively a custard made with pureed strawberries.

Wash your strawberries and put them into your tart. Season them with cinnamon, ginger, and sugar. Put in a little red wine into them and serve them so.

100g sugar (add more if you like it sweet)

22cm pie crust shell (either short crust or standard pie-crust recipe)

Preheat oven to 350F. Roll out the pastry in a 9 inch pie plate, then bake the crust blind. Prick all of the pastry with a fork, then bake for about 20 minutes and remove from the oven. While the pastry is baking, make the filling. Put strawberries in a saucepan along with sugar, cinnamon, ginger, and half of the wine. Simmer for 10 minutes and bring to a boil. Mix the cornstarch with remaining wine. Pour the cornstarch mixture into strawberries and stir until thickened. Remove from heat and fill the tart shell.

How to cook a Christmas turkey - roasting times, recipes and tips for your dinner

Most people only cook turkey once a year so would be forgiven for making a mess of it .

It shouldn&apost be a nightmare though and we promise it won&apost be with this fool-proof guide to getting a tasty juicy and satisfying Christmas turkey.

And as food is so important we asked the experts at Waitrose for their tips on on turkey cooking times and all things related to the iconic Christmas dinner staple.

Tie up your apron and take notes for your Christmas dinner preparation from our handy guide. If you need more inspiration for your Christmas dinner menu, we have recipes for cocktails , Christmas desserts and how to get perfect roast trimmings .

Why do we eat turkey at Christmas?

Eating turkey at Christmas is a tradition going back to medieval times. Large fowl was the centre piece in the houses of the rich Geese, duck, partridge but to name a few.

Turkeys were introduced in the Tudor times and because of the plentiful meat on them, they soon grew in popularity.

In post war Britain, modern farming methods facilitated more turkeys to be reared and the traditional turkey is still the most popular meat to eat over the festive period.

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How do I pick a Christmas turkey?

There&aposs lots to choose from but start with how many people you are going to feed.

Whole birds are the best value and the leftovers of the turkey are great for cooking stock.

Crowns and breast on the bone crowns are easier to carve as the leg bones have been removed.

For the ultimate convenience, the joints are easy to carve and come in a foil tray to cook the joint in, there’s also no waste. For those who need a gluten free stuffed turkey, we have our gluten free stuffed turkey parcel with a pork gingerbread and apricot stuffing.

Read More
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What are the benefits of fresh over frozen turkeys?

Fresh turkeys are ready to cook, whereas with a frozen turkey, you have to ensure you’ve allowed time for it to defrost.

At Waitrose we enable our customers to order their fresh turkeys and pick it up when it is convenient for them.

Why do some turkeys cost more than others?

The cost of the bird depends on the breed of the turkey, how long it is grown for and whether it is free range or grown indoors. All of these factors will affect the cost.

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How to cook a turkey?

First make sure that you check your oven. All ovens runs at different temperatures and not necessarily the one that it says on the dial. All cooking instructions are checked in ovens that have been calibrated and so to get the best from your turkey, this is a must.

Take your turkey, put butter under the skin and season the skin. Cover with foil which you tuck under the turkey not over the tin.

Preheat the oven to 140C and then cook in the oven for 23 minutes per kg plus 2hr and 40 mins - long and slow. This allows the turkey to cook gently ensuring a moist turkey as the end result.

Half an hour before the end of the cook, remove the foil and return to the oven to crisp the skin. Remember to check that the turkey is cooked by piercing the turkey to check that the juices run clear.

Leave to rest for at least half an hour. If you wrap in foil, the turkey will stay warm for an hour. When you take your turkey out of the oven it will continue to cook.

Christmas Dinner 2018

What are the best turkey cooking times?

At Waitrose, our turkey crowns - which are the breast in the bone without the legs and wings- come in a cooking bag which helps to cook the crown more quickly.

Preheat the oven to 140C and cook for 29 mins per kg plus 1hr 17 mins.

If you want a crisp skin, take the cooking bag off 30 mins before the end of the cook.

For more information check our article on how long you need to cook a turkey .

Turkey recipe from Jonathan Moore, Waitrose Executive Chef

Butter-Roasted Turkey

A good size of turkey for the average family is 6.4kg oven-ready. This will easily feed 8 people with plenty left over for Boxing Day. Waitrose Bronze Feathered Free Range Turkey is an excellent choice.

As there are so many accompaniments to the traditional lunch it is best to keep the turkey fairly simple.

Top food stories


6.4kg Waitrose Bronze Feathered Free Range Turkey

Freshly ground black pepper


Preheat the oven to 180ºC, gas mark 4. Remove the giblets from the turkey. Calculate the cooking time allowing 45 minutes per kg plus 20 minutes.

Spread the butter over the turkey making sure that the thighs are particularly well covered. Place the bird breast-side down in a large roasting tin then season the turkey well with salt and pepper.

Cover the turkey loosely with a large tent of turkey foil leaving plenty of space between the flesh and the foil. Secure the foil around the edges of the roasting tin.

Cook the turkey for the calculated cooking time but remove the foil for the last 45 minutes. Increase the oven temperature to 200°C, gas mark 6 when you remove the foil and turn the turkey breast-side up. Baste frequently with the juices during this last period of cooking.

Insert a skewer into the thickest part of the turkey thigh. If the turkey is cooked through the juices should run clear. If not cook the turkey for longer. Always check the turkey is cooked using this method - don&apost guess! Tip the turkey to let the juices run into the tin then place it onto a warmed carving plate. Cover the turkey loosely with foil and leave to rest for 10 minutes. This allows the turkey juices to rise to the surface, making the turkey more succulent to eat and easier to carve.

Cook&aposs tips

If you don&apost want a whole turkey, or your family prefer white meat, choose a Waitrose Turkey Breast Crown. They are quicker to cook and very simple to carve with no waste.


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