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Ottolenghi turkey thighs with lemon herb sauce

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Quick, easy and cheap with Ottolenghi flare

I have long been a big fan of roasting turkey thighs for everyday meals. Thighs make a quick, easy and inexpensive meal that can be used for salads, sandwiches or eaten as is for your main course. Whether you are talking chicken or turkey, thighs are moister, cheaper and more flavorful than breasts. So I was delighted when I discovered a marinated turkey breast in the The Ottolenghi Cookbook. I knew whatever Ottolenghi was doing with turkey breasts would be every bit as good or better with thighs.

A great marinade that doubles as sauce

This lemony herbed marinade is full-flavored, yet fresh and light. Use it first to marinate the turkey and then reduce it to make a quick sauce.

Make ahead and serve either hot or cold

Ideally, you will marinate your turkey a day in advance, but if you don't have the time, even an hour or two will be worth it. The beauty of this dish is it can be served hot or at room temperature, making it a good choice for a picnic or a pot luck.

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Measuring your herbs

There is not a great way to measure herbs. They are too light to weigh, you can't measure them with any accuracy whole, and they vary in volume, depending on how finely you chop them. The good news, is the exact quantity of herbs is rarely critical. In this recipe, I go with a simple  "handful" of each.


A Cuisinart mini-prep makes quick work of this recipe. A citrus press is also useful. In fact, next to my knives, these two tools are my most frequently used cooking tools.

Use leftovers for a great quinoa dish

Make an extra thigh or two and use it to make Quinoa with turkey, pomegranates and citrus herb sauce. Don't you love it when you can make one dish and serve it two nights two different ways?


Ottolenghi turkey thighs with lemon herb sauce

Ottolenghi’s quick, fresh take on turkey for any time of the year. Roasted turkey thighs come alive with this lemony herbed marinade that with a quick reduction doubles as a sauce. Serve hot or cold.

  • Author: Something New For Dinner
  • Prep Time: 20 minutes
  • Cook Time: 60 minutes
  • Total Time: 1 hours 20 minutes
  • Yield: 3 -4 servings 1x


  • 2 cloves garlic, peeled
  • 1 handful mint leaves, big stems removed
  • 1 handful flat-leaf parsley, big stems removed
  • 1 handful cilantro, don’t worry about the stems
  • 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1/2 cup white wine
  • 1/2 t ground cumin
  • 1/2 t salt
  • 1/2 t fresh ground pepper
  • 2 turkey thighs (or a turkey breast)


  1. Put your garlic cloves in the Cuisinart mini-prep or full-sized food processor and blitz. Add herbs and blitz again. Add lemon juice, olive oil, wine, cumin, salt and pepper and blitz again.
  2. Put turkey thighs in a plastic bag and pour the marinade over. Remove as much air as possible and seal the bag. Massage the bag so the marinade coats the turkey and is really worked into the meat. Put it in the refrigerator for up to 24 hours, the longer the better.
  3. Heat oven to 425 degrees. Remove the turkey from the marinade and reserve. Roast the turkey for 15 minutes. Reduce the heat to 350 and continue to roast for another 45 minutes.
  4. Remove the turkey from the oven. If you plan to serve the turkey hot, let stand for 10 minutes before you slice it. If you are planning to serve at room temperature, allow the turkey to cool completely before slicing.
  5. Meanwhile, put the residual marinade into a small sauce pan and bring just to a boil. Reduce heat to low and simmer for about 7 minutes, until the marinade is reduced by about half.
  6. If serving the turkey hot, also serve the sauce hot. If serving the turkey at room temperature, also serve the sauce at room temperature.

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