Yield: 12 servings
18-pound heritage turkey
¼ cup butter, softened
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
Cracked black pepper
¼ cup fresh sage leaves
4 bay leaves
1 lemon, whole
2 cups water
Set oven rack in lowest position and preheat oven to 425°.
Rinse outside of turkey and turkey cavity; pat dry. Slide hand under skin to gently separate skin from the breast meat. Using fingers, coat meat under skin with butter. Lightly baste outside of skin with olive oil and generously season turkey and cavity with salt and pepper. Put sage leaves and bay leaves into turkey cavity. Rinse and dry lemon, then poke holes around with sharp knife; place into turkey cavity.
Place turkey in roasting pan and pour water in the pan, around the outside of the turkey. Tent with foil, place in oven and roast for 30 minutes. Reduce heat to 325° and roast until instant-read thermometer inserted into thickest part of thigh registers 170°, basting with pan drippings every 30 minutes, for approximately 2 to 2½ hours in total.
Let stand 15 minutes before carving.
—Recipe developed for Edible Omaha by Julie Kolpin and Mary Oswald