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Roast Turkey with Sticky Rice and Hoisin Gravy Recipe


Soy Sauce

Here's an Asian-influenced twist on a traditional Thanksgiving turkey centerpiece, courtesy of chef Anita Lo.

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For the turkey

  • One 12-pound turkey
  • 1 cup rice wine vinegar
  • 1 cup maltose
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • 1 tablespoon five spice powder
  • 1/2 cup canola oil
  • 1 teaspoon sesame oil
  • 1 cup water

For the sticky rice

  • 3 cups short grain glutinous rice, rinsed
  • 4 1/2 cups water
  • 3 Chinese sausages, cut into rounds
  • 3 tablespoons dried scallop, reconstituted
  • 2 tablespoons red dates
  • 1/3 cup chestnuts, roasted and peeled
  • 3 tablespoons gingko nuts
  • 3 tablespoons Chinese ham, cubed
  • 1 teaspoon dried shrimp
  • 2 tablespoons Shaoxing cooking wine
  • 1/3 cup sugar, or to taste
  • 3 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 1/3 cup edamame, peeled
  • 3 tablespoons scallions, green parts only, sliced thinly on a bias, for garnish

For the hoisin gravy

  • 1/2 cup Shaoxing cooking wine
  • 1 cup chicken stock
  • 1/3 cup hoisin
  • 2 tablespoons oyster sauce
  • Black pepper, to taste


For the turkey

Bring a pot of water to a boil over high heat. Place the turkey in the sink, and with a large ladle, pour the boiling water over the skin of the turkey until it becomes tight and slightly blanched. Dry well with a clean paper towel.

Add the rice wine vinegar, maltose, and soy sauce to a pot, and bring to a boil over high heat. Remove from heat, and brush the mixture all over the turkey. Season with the salt, pepper, and five spice powder inside and out. Allow it to dry uncovered in the refrigerator for 1 or 2 nights.

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Mix the canola and sesame oils together and reserve on the side with a brush for basting. Fill a baking dish with 1 cup water, and place a rack on top large enough to hold the turkey. Place the turkey on the rack, and roast, brushing occasionally, for about 2 ½-3 hours or until juices run clear when a pairing knife is inserted into the thickest part of the thigh. Allow to rest 15 minutes before carving. Reserve the cooking liquid from the baking dish.

For the sticky rice

Rinse the rice 2 times in cold water and drain. Place all ingredients except the edamame and scallions into a shallow, nonstick pot. Bring to a boil, stir, and cover. Turn the flame down to the lowest setting. Cook until all of the liquid is absorbed, about 20 minutes. Fold in the edamame. Taste and adjust seasoning, and garnish with the scallions.

For the hoisin gravy

Place the baking dish from the roast turkey on the stove and set over medium-high heat. Add the Shaoxing cooking wine and stir, removing any brown bits stuck to the bottom by scraping with a wooden spoon. Reduce by ½. Add the remaining ingredients and bring to a boil. Taste and adjust seasonings.