- 1 small (12- to 13-pound) turkey
- ¾ cup Wet Adobo
- 1 large Spanish onion
- 1 large carrot, peeled, trimmed and cut into 1-inch pieces
- 3 celery stalks, trimmed and cut into 1-inch pieces
- 2 bay leaves
- 2 teaspoons arrowroot or 4 teaspoons cornstarch
- 2 cups plus 2 tablespoons water
Remove the bag of giblets and neck from the turkey. Discard the liver and whack the remaining giblets and neck into large pieces with a cleaver or heavy knife.
Wash the turkey, pulling out and discarding any large pockets of fat from the body cavity as you do. Pat the turkey dry, and set on paper towels on your cutting board. Work your fingers between the skin and flesh of the turkey, working carefully and slowly to prevent tearing the skin. Once you have separated the skin from the breast, thigh and as much of the leg meat as you can, rub the wet adobo into the flesh and inside the turkey. Truss the turkey with kitchen twine. (See instructions for trussing a chicken on page 000.) Refrigerate for at least 2 hours or up to overnight.
Preheat the oven to 400° F. Scatter the onion, celery, carrot, bay leaves, and reserved neck and giblet pieces into a roasting pan. Pour in 2 cups water. Place the turkey breast side down on a roasting rack (preferably a V-shaped one) and roast the turkey 13-15 minutes a pound, until the juices run clear, not pink, from the thickest part of the thigh when poked down to the bone with a paring knife. About 30 minutes before the turkey is cooked, turn it breast side up to give the breast a lovely color.
Remove the turkey from the rack, and let it rest on a cutting board. Add water, if necessary, to make about 2 cups of liquid in the pan. Skim fat from the liquid and place the pan over high heat. Cook, stirring up the bits from the bottom, and bring to a boil. Strain through a fine sieve, discarding the solids, and return the liquid to the pan. Stir the arrowroot and 2 tablespoons water together in a small bowl until the arrowroot is dissolved. Add to the gravy, and stir over medium high heat, until the gravy is slightly thickened and glossy. Check for seasoning, adding salt and pepper if necessary.