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Roast Turkey With Tasty Chestnut Stuffing

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5.5Kg whole turkey, giblets removed
2 cups butter
2 cups sliced onions

900g chestnuts
2 cups minced celery
10 cups dried bread crumbs
1 tspn dried thyme
1 tspn dried marjoram
1 tspn dried savory
1 tspn dried rosemary
Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste 

N.B. Items in bold are available from all MF outlets.

With a sharp knife cut a cross on the flat side of each chestnut. Simmer, covered with water, in a saucepan for 5 minutes. Drain. While hot, remove the shells and inner brown skins. Cover with fresh water. Boil for 20 to 30 minutes until tender. Drain. Chop coarsely.
 
To prepare the stuffing, melt the butter in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Stir in onions and celery, and cook until tender. Thoroughly mix in bread crumbs and chestnuts. Season with thyme, marjoram, savoury, and rosemary.
 
Preheat oven to 175 degrees. Wash turkey with cold water, and pat dry. Rub salt and pepper into body cavities. Loosely spoon stuffing into body cavities. Close skin with skewers or kitchen twine, and tie drumsticks together. Place turkey on a rack in a medium roasting pan.
 
Roast turkey 3 1/2 to 4 1/2 hours in the preheated oven, until internal temperature of thigh reaches 180 degrees and stuffing reaches 165 degrees. A foil tent may be placed over the turkey during the last half of roasting time to avoid over browning.

Remove from oven, place on platter, and allow the turkey to stand for 20 minutes before carving.

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