Christmas Rendang Turkey — Whip It UP!

Capella Christmas Rendang Turkey

By Chef’s Table, Capella Singapore


Serve up this Asian-inspired turkey marinated in a rendang paste and slow roasted till succulent and tender using tried and tested tips and techniques.

Total time: 2.5  hours
Difficulty: 2/5
Cost: $100
Servings: 8

A: Turkey

3.5kg whole turkey, defrosted


B: Marinade

1kg beef rendang paste
2 stalks spring onions, cut into 5 cm
40g ginger, peeled and thickly sliced
3½ tablespoons salt


C: Stuffing

3 cinnamon sticks
3 star anise


D: Accompaniment

12 whole potatoes (2kg) e.g. russet, yukon gold
4 tablespoons olive oil
3 tablespoons salt
Green salad


E: Gravy

250ml–375ml (1½ cups) dripping from roasting pan
4 tablespoons plain flour
1 litre chicken stock, unsalted



1. Preheat oven to 95°C for 20 minutes.

2. Wash potatoes and cut each tuber lengthwise into two. Place potatoes in a large saucepan, add 1 tablespoon of salt. Bring it to a boil. Cook for 5 minutes. Drain.

3. Transfer spuds to a large mixing bowl. Pour in olive oil and add remaining salt. Toss to coat potatoes in oil and salt mixture. Set it aside.

4. In a food processor, blend all ingredients under B into a paste. Rub it on the whole turkey to marinate the bird for 10 minutes. Stuff cinnamon and star anise into turkey cavity.

5. Place turkey on a rack inside a roasting pan. Slow cook 2.5  hours until it reaches 75°C using a meat thermometer* inserted into the turkey thigh.

6. One hour before turkey is cooked, arrange parboiled potatoes around it. Continue roasting until it is cooked. To test if potato is cooked, pierce the largest potato in the centre with a satay skewer or use a small knife. If it yields easily, potatoes are cooked.

7. Remove turkey from oven. Allow it to rest 20 minutes before carving.

8. Meanwhile, make the gravy. Pour dripping into a small mixing bowl. The top layer is the fat – scoop out 60ml (4 tablespoons) into the saucepan. Set aside remaining fat.

9. Sprinkle flour over dripping. Stir with a spatula till well blended. Place saucepan over medium heat. Cook for 3 to 5 minutes until smooth, stirring continually.

10. Pour in stock gradually, stirring all the time until it boils and thickens, around 8 minutes. Remove from heat.

11. Drizzle gravy over sliced turkey and roast potatoes. Serve with a green salad.


TIP: Cooking time varies according to the bird’s weight. Allow 20 minutes per kg of meat, plus an additional 70 minutes for the complete cooking process. Turkeys are generally sold with a pre-inserted pop-up timer. If it doesn’t or you don’t own a meat thermometer, here are two ways to check if the turkey is cooked.

1. Use a knife, cut between the thigh and breast. If the juices run clear, the turkey is done.

2. Alternatively, insert a metal skewer into the thickest part of the thigh. If juices run clear, turkey is cooked.  If not, return to the oven and roast until it is done.

TECHNIQUE: Resting allows turkey muscles to contract and relax, sealing in its natural juices, hence making the meat juicier and tastier. Slicing a rested turkey is also much easier.

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