October 4, 2018

Laura Calder’s Parsley, Sage, Rosemary & Thyme–Brined Roast Turkey

Recipe: Laura Calder

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Total Time: 26 hours, including brining time

A 15-lb. turkey will serve 12 to 14 people. The brine used in this recipe results in a juicy bird with lovely crispy skin. The extra rub of butter before roasting doesn’t hurt, either! If you’re hosting fewer, buy one or two breasts instead.



  • 2 tsp olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, coarsely chopped
  • 8 garlic cloves, smashed
  • 6 tbsp kosher salt
  • 10 sprigs rosemary
  • 1 small bunch parsley
  • 10 sage leaves
  • 1 small bunch thyme
  • 9 cups water
  • 2 lemons, halved


  • 1 turkey (about 15 lb.)
  • 1⁄2 cup butter, softened
  • Freshly ground pepper


  • 2 medium apples, quartered (or 2 cups mini apples)
  • 2 garlic heads, halved horizontally
  • 2 lemons, halved


Yield: Serves 12 to 14

Make Brine

  1. In large pot, heat oil then add onion and garlic. Sauté for 5 minutes.
  2. Add salt, fresh herbs and 1 cup water. Cook until salt is dissolved. Remove from heat and add remaining water to pot. Add in lemon halves, giving each a good squeeze into the pot as you go.

Brine Turkey

  1. Place turkey in large nonreactive receptacle, such as a large pot or bag that seals. Pour in brine to cover; seal bag or cover with lid and refrigerate 24 hours. (If more water is needed to cover turkey, dissolve 1⁄2 tablespoon more salt for every extra cup of water added. You will need to dissolve salt in water before adding but no extra herbs or aromatics are needed).
  2. Remove turkey from brine. Discard brine and pat turkey dry thoroughly. Allow to sit at room temperature for an hour. Set on rack in roasting pan. Rub all over with butter and season with pepper.

Roast Turkey

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Roast turkey until thermometer inserted at the leg reaches 160°F, about 2 to 21⁄2 hours, basting every now and again. Add apples, garlic and lemons to pan for last 40 minutes of roasting.
  2. Remove from oven and lift bird onto carving board, reserving roasting pan and juices for gravy recipe. Leave oven turned on for stuffing. Let turkey rest, tented in foil, for 25 minutes before carving.

Stacey Brandford


House & Home October 2017


Prop styling by Morgan Michener and Lauren Petroff