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Top-tips for the perfect turkey from Keelham Farm Shop

The Keelham Farm Shop’s Master Butcher Tony reveals his top turkey tips for Christmas Day

The fanatical foodies at the multi-award winning farm shop and Skipton restaurant, Keelham Farm, are keeping it local this season.

From terrific turkeys and succulent, locally sourced meats to the county’s very best veg and Christmas dinner essentials. You can create the perfect Yorkshire inspired feast for family and friends.

Master Butcher, Tony and his team have hand-selected the very best range of turkeys, duck and goose as well as a mouth-watering selection of Yorkshire beef, lamb and pork to grace your festive table.

In his Christmas Turkey Recipe, Tony shares his top tips for creating the perfect centrepiece for your festive feast.

Initially, the bird is steamed with aromatics, then roasted until the skin is super-crispy. The turkey remains beautifully tender, moist and full of flavour, whether you’re enjoying it as part of a big family dinner or for leftovers the next day.

Keelham Farm Shop Outside

Top-tips for the perfect turkey from Keelham Farm Shop

Step One: Prepare the turkey

  • Take your turkey out of the fridge and unwrap at least an hour before cooking (or longer for a larger bird). Place the turkey in a suitable, sturdy roasting tin, breast-side up. Heat the oven to 220°C/Gas 7.
  • Cut an onion into 4-6 pieces. Put some in the cavity. Halve or quarter an orange or clementine. Pop inside the cavity with a few sprigs of rosemary, thyme and/or bay and a clove or 2 of garlic.
  • Dust with salt and pepper – be generous with the salt as this helps to crisp up the skin, then rub in thoroughly. Put the rest of the onion and some rosemary around the bird. Flip the turkey over so it’s breast-side down. (The generous layer of fat on the back drips down and bastes the breasts as it cooks).
  • Do the salt and pepper rub again.

Step Two: Cook the turkey

  • Roast for 20-30 mins or until bronzed.
  • Turn the oven down to 170°C/Gas 3 and cook for the following times: 4kg – 2 hours | 5kg – 2½ hours | 6kg – 3 hours | 7kg – 3 ½ hours | 8kg – 4 hours | 9kg – 4 ½ hours.
  • Use your instincts. Cooking times can vary from oven to oven. If it seems done before time’s up, do the pierce test. Pierce the fattest part of the leg with the tip of a knife or a skewer. If the juices run clear, it’s done.
  • Carefully turn the bird over to brown the breast. Increase the heat back up to 220°C/Gas 7. Roast for a further 20 mins, or till the breast is beautifully golden.

Step Three: Rest the turkey

  • Rest the turkey (and yourself) for at least an hour before carving.
  • Pour a glass of something chilled, we recommend Henner’s delectable Sparkling Wine – carve, eat, enjoy, oh, and let someone else do the washing up!

Enjoyed this Top-tips for the perfect turkey recipe? View All Recipes

keelham farm shop - interior

Real reindeer at Keelham Farm Shop

For those of you looking to make some special Christmas memories, don’t miss the real reindeer who are in residence in the main courtyard every Friday – Sunday until the 19th December.

Get into the festive spirit every weekend in The Barn which has been transformed into a magical winter wonderland. Stacked with an array of amazing décor ideas, it even comes complete with its very own Christmas cabin serving delicious mince pies, mulled wine and hot chocolate (Fri – Sun) or grab a tasty treat at one of the independent festive concessions in the courtyard at the weekend.

Yorkshire Christmas at Keelham Farm Shop collage

Yorkshire inspired festive party menu at Keelham Farm Shop

If you haven’t quite had your full festive quota just yet, the Keelham Kitchen will be serving up a delectable, Yorkshire inspired festive party menu (2 courses £20, 3 Courses £24 + add a cheeseboard £30) until 23rd December from 5-7.30 pm daily.

A perfect option for a tasty evening out with colleagues, that long-awaited family get-together or much-needed fizz with friends.

Click here to find out more or book an event

21 Gargrave Rd, Skipton BD23 1UD – 01756 664170


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Written by

Josh Bailey-Lee


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