serves 12 - 14
1 turkey (5 - 6 kg approx)
4 sticks celery
1 small turnip
2 rashers streaky bacon, without rinds
3/4 stick + 1 tbsp (3 1/2 oz) 100 g butter or margarine
1.5 litres chicken stock
125 ml red wine
a pinch of dried thyme
1 bay leaf
6 parsley sprigs
salt and pepper
3 tbsp (25 g) flour
2 tablespoons double cream (heavy cream)
for the garnish
1. Choose a large pan which will hold the turkey, or halve the bird lengthways, and place each half in a large deep roasting tin. (In this case, divide the other ingredients equally between the tins.)
2. Prepare and chop all the vegetables and the bacon.
3. Melt the butter or margarine in the pan, and fry the chopped vegetables and bacon, turning as required, until lightly browned all over.
4. Add the turkey, pour the stock and wine over the bird, and add the herbs and seasoning.
5. Cover tightly with a lid or foil, and simmer very gently for 3 1/2 - 4 hours. (If cooking the halved bird in 2 tins, reduce the cooking time to 2-2 1/2 hours.)
6. Baste occasionally with the liquid in the pan while cooking.
7. When the bird is tender, remove it from the pan, and keep hot.
8. Strain the remaining cooking liquid into a smaller pan.
9. Discard the vegetables and herbs.
10. Blend the flour to a smooth paste with a little cold water, and stir it into the stock in the pan.
11. Place over gentle heat, and stir until the sauce thickens.
12. Stir in the cream, and re heat, but do not boil.
13. Place the bird on a heated serving platter and sprinkle with chopped parsley.
14. Serve the sauce separately.