2000s Recipes + Menus

Agave-Glazed Roast Turkey Breast with Sherry Gravy

Serves 8
  • Active time: 40 minutes
    Total time: 2 3/4 hours
Old-world Spanish sherry blends beautifully with new-world agave nectar for a gentle sweet-and-sour glaze and luscious gravy.


For Turkey Breast:

  • 1 (5- to 6-pound) turkey breast with skin and bones
  • 1 medium onion, sliced
  • 1 cup water
  • 3 tablespoon agave nectar
  • 1/3 cup sherry vinegar

For Gravy:

  • 1 cup dry or medium-dry sherry
  • 3 cups Brown Poultry Stock or reduced-sodium chicken broth
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1/3 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 to 3 tablespoons sherry vinegar


  • roasting pan fitted with a V-shaped rack; instant-read thermometer


For Turkey Breast:

  • Pat turkey breast dry and rub all over with 2 1/2 teaspoons salt and 1 teaspoon pepper. Let turkey stand at room temperature 1 hour, or chill in a baking dish, covered, overnight (see Cooks' Note) and return to room temperature.
  • Heat oven to 425°F with rack in lower third. Roast turkey, skin side up, on rack 30 minutes.
  • Reduce oven to 400°F; scatter onion slices in bottom of pan. Add water (1 cup) and continue to roast until thermometer inserted in thickest part of breast, close to but not touching bone, registers 160°F, 30 to 40 minutes.
  • While turkey is roasting, stir together agave and vinegar in a small nonreactive saucepan and boil, stirring occasionally, until reduced to 3 tablespoons. Keep warm off heat.
  • Brush glaze on turkey and roast until thermometer registers 165°F, 3 to 5 minutes.
  • Transfer turkey to a platter and let stand 15 minutes.

For Gravy:

  • While turkey is standing, remove rack, scraping any brown bits from it into pan.
  • Position pan over 2 burners and add sherry; deglaze pan by boiling, stirring and scraping up browned bits, 1 minute. Strain liquid through a sieve into a heavy medium saucepan. Add stock and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and keep at a simmer.
  • Meanwhile, whisk water (1/2 cup) slowly into flour in a small bowl until flour slurry is smooth; whisk in 1 tablespoon vinegar. Add flour slurry to simmering stock, whisking, and bring gravy to a boil, whisking. Reduce heat; simmer, whisking, 3 minutes.
  • Season with salt, pepper, and additional vinegar, if desired.
  • Slice turkey breast and serve with gravy.

Cooks' Notes

  • Letting turkey marinate overnight with a dry rub of salt results in juicy meat. If using a kosher bird, don't marinate overnight.
  • The easiest way to carve the turkey is to remove the 2 meaty breast halves in 2 separate pieces from either side of the breastbone and ribs, then slice them crosswise.
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