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Stuffed Turkey Recipe - Tacchino Arrosto Ripieno

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Stuffed Turkey, or Tacchino Arrosto Ripieno: This recipe is based on Ada Boni's Talismano della Felicità, and is quite similar to the recipe Artusi gave in La Scienza in Cucina e L'Arte di Mangiar Bene, though he calls for mushrooms, whereas she increases the number of sausages in hers, and also adds some pitted olives. Both include black truffles as an optional. To serve six you'll need:

Prep Time: 1 hour

Cook Time: 2 hours

Total Time: 3 hours


  • A plump, small turkey weighing about 3 pounds (1.5 k -- see note below)
  • 20 chestnuts
  • 20 sweet green olives, pitted
  • 6 mild Italian sausages, casings removed
  • 1/4 pound (100 g) fresh lard (use fat back or pork side here, not rendered lard), thinly sliced
  • Flour
  • Black truffle (optional)


Note on turkey size: Ada Boni wrote her book in 1928, when Italian turkeys were much smaller than those one finds now. Figure a small bird and adjust the proportions of the other ingredients to suit the weight of the bird.

Flame the turkey, and then bone it (see instructions if need be). Rinse the cavity and pat it dry.

Make a slice in the round side of each chestnut, and roast them in a 400 F (200 C) oven until they are done (the rind will have peeled back from the cut, and they will be fairly soft). Peel them when they're done (A note: If all you can find is dried chestnuts, soak them in warm water until they soften and proceed with the recipe).

Mince half the lard and combine it with the sausage meat, olives, and chestnuts; if you are using black truffles cut them up and add them to the stuffing too. Stuff the bird and sew the skin over the opening to shut it. While doing this, preheat your oven to 350 F (175 C).

Truss the bird, lay the remaining slices of lard over the breast meat, and slip a fine butcher's net over the bird to hold them in place as it roasts. About 15 minutes before it's done, remove the sliced lard so the breast meat can brown too. A note: Italians generally don't use roasting racks, though you might want to to keep the underside of the bird from sitting in the pan drippings as it cooks.

Ms. Boni suggests an hour's roasting time, which would be about right for a small bird. Assuming your bird weighs between 8 and 12 pounds (3.5-5.5 k), figure a roasting time of 3 to 3 1/2 hours. The internal temperature should be 180 F (82 C) in the thigh, while the center of the stuffing should reach 165 F (73 C).

When it's done, let it rest 10 minutes, and then serve it, sliced, with degreased pan drippings and the condiments of choice.

Yield: 6-8 servings stuffed turkey.

My Reply to Adafan
As you might guess, Ada Boni has several stuffed turkey recipes. This is the one that struck my eye.
Kyle Phillips, Your Guide to Italian Cooking

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