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Classic Cheesecloth Turkey

Food Ingredients

Classic Cheesecloth Turkey

A Traditional Turkey, but Elevated…

This roasted turkey is the go-to recipe for D2D’s contributing chef, Lisa Fielding…and for good reason. And she follows this beautiful bird up with her extraordinary pumpkin pie cheesecake.

Classic Cheesecloth Turkey, Classic Cheesecloth TurkeyScroll down for instructions and enjoy 🙂

Want to dig deeper into this recipe to learn how foods like these are a part of our bigger food system? We’ve got something for everyone!

Lisa’s Classic Cheesecloth Turkey


  • 1 turkey (14 to 16 pounds)
  • 1/2 cup butter, softened
  • 3 tablespoons minced fresh thyme
  • 3 tablespoons minced fresh sage
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon pepper
  • 2 celery ribs, quartered
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 1 medium carrot, quartered
  • 1 cup butter, cubed
  • 2 cups white wine


  • 2 to 3 cups chicken broth
  • 5 tablespoons all-purpose flour


  • Preheat oven to 325°. Remove giblets from turkey; cover and refrigerate for gravy. Pat turkey dry; place breast side up on a rack in a roasting pan. In a small bowl, combine softened butter, thyme and sage. With fingers, carefully loosen skin from turkey breast; rub butter mixture under skin. Sprinkle salt and pepper over turkey and inside cavity; fill cavity with celery, onion and carrot.
  • In a large saucepan, melt cubed butter; stir in wine. Saturate a four-layered 17-in. square of cheesecloth in butter mixture; drape over turkey. Bake turkey, uncovered, 3 hours; baste with wine mixture every 30 minutes, keeping cheesecloth moist at all times.
  • Remove and discard cheesecloth. Bake turkey until a thermometer inserted in the thigh reads 170°-175°, basting occasionally with pan drippings, 45 minutes to 1-1/4 hours longer. (Cover loosely with foil if turkey browns too quickly.)
  • Remove turkey to a serving platter; cover and let stand 20 minutes before carving. Discard vegetables from cavity. Pour drippings and loosened brown bits into a measuring cup. Skim fat, reserving 1/3 cup. Add enough broth to remaining drippings to measure 4 cups.
  • In a saucepan, melt a few tablespoons butter and add flour to make a roux. Cook for one minute and add broth all at once whisking until incorporated. Simmer for five minutes stirring constantly until thickened. Use this as your gravy.

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