- 1 turkey, 13 to 15 pounds
- 2 Tablespoons za'atar seasoning blend
- 1 Tablespoon each of ground cinnamon, turmeric
- 2 Teaspoons each of ground cumin, garlic powder
- 1/2 Teaspoon coarsely ground black pepper
- 1/4 Teaspoon cayenne, optional
- 2-3 carrots, diced
- 1 large onion, diced
- 1 large bulb fresh fennel, stalks and fronds removed, bulb diced
- 1 small leek, split, rinsed, diced
- 6 cloves garlic, crushed
- 2 Teaspoons salt
Remove the giblets and neck packets from the cavity of the turkey.
Rinse turkey well and pat dry.
Cut the turkey in portions like you would a chicken: First remove the legs and cut them apart into drumsticks and thighs. Then cut off the wings. Use kitchen shears to cut out the back bone. Use a large knife or kitchen shears to carefully split the turkey breast down the middle into two halves.
Put the giblets (not the liver), neck, wings and backbone into a large pot.
Add cold water to cover by 2 inches, usually 3 quarts.
Simmer, adding water if needed, 2 to 3 hours.
Strain into a bowl, discarding the solids.
Refrigerate broth for up to 3 days. You should have about 6 cups.
Mix all the spices together in a small bowl.
Rub the mixture on all sides of the turkey breast halves, thighs and drumsticks set on a baking sheet in a single layer. Rubbed turkey can be refrigerated, loosely covered, up to several days.
Heat the oven to 350 degrees.
Mix carrots, onion, fennel, leek, and garlic in the bottom of a large metal baking pan.
Nestle the turkey parts into the vegetables in a single uncrowded layer.
Sprinkle everything with salt.
Put the pan in the oven.
Carefully pour 3 to 4 cups of the turkey broth into the pan, taking care not to pour it over the rubbed turkey; you don't want to wash off the rub. The broth should come halfway up the sides of the meat.
Cook until an instant-read thermometer registers 160 degrees when inserted in the breast and the juices run clear, about 1 hour.
Use tongs to remove breasts to a cutting board.
Continue cooking the thighs and legs, 15-20 minutes.
Arrange all the turkey pieces on a platter or cutting board.
Let turkey rest about 10 minutes before slicing.
Skim off and discard any fat from the pan juices.
The juices can be thickened to make a gravy, using a cornstarch slurry (a tablespoon of cornstarch dissolved in a little cold water).
Serve the vegetables with the sliced turkey.