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© Meredith Corporation. All rights reserved. Used with permission.
To prepare turkey: Position rack in lower third of oven; preheat to 475°F.
Remove giblets and neck from turkey cavities and reserve to make stock. Place the turkey, breast-side up, on a rack in a large roasting pan; pat dry with paper towels.
Combine oil, chopped herbs, salt and pepper in a small bowl. Rub the herb mixture all over the turkey, under the skin and onto the breast meat. Place herb sprigs, 6 shallot halves and apple in the cavity. Tuck the wing tips under the turkey. Tie the legs together with kitchen string. Add 3 cups water to the pan.
Roast the turkey until the skin is golden brown, 45 minutes. Remove from the oven. If using a remote digital thermometer, insert it into the deepest part of the thigh, close to the joint. Cover just the breast with a double layer of foil, cutting as necessary to fit. Scatter the remaining shallots in the pan around the turkey.
Reduce oven temperature to 350°. Return the turkey to the oven and continue roasting until the thermometer (or an instant-read thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the thigh without touching bone) registers 165°F, 1 to 1 3/4 hours more. If the pan dries out, add 1 cup water and tilt the turkey to let juices run out of the cavity into the pan.
Meanwhile, prepare stock: Combine neck and giblets (except liver), 6 cups water, onion, carrot and celery in a large saucepan; bring to a boil. Add peppercorns, bay leaf and thyme. Reduce heat and simmer, skimming and discarding any foam, for 1 hour.
Strain stock through a fine-mesh sieve into a medium bowl and let cool. Discard solids.
When the turkey is done, transfer to a serving platter (reserve pan juices and shallots), tent with foil and let rest for 20 minutes.
Meanwhile, prepare gravy: Whisk 1/2 cup of the cooled stock with flour in a small bowl until smooth.
Set the roasting pan over two burners on medium-high heat. Add cider and vinegar; bring to a boil and cook, scraping up the browned bits from the pan, until the liquid is reduced by about half, 6 to 8 minutes. Add 3 1/2 cups of the stock. Increase heat to high; return to a boil, whisking often. Boil until the liquid is reduced by about half, 8 to 12 minutes.
Whisk the flour mixture into the pan. Boil, whisking constantly, until the gravy is thickened, 1 to 3 minutes. Remove from the heat and pour the gravy through a fine sieve into a large measuring cup. (Discard the solids.) Season with salt and pepper.
Remove the string from the turkey and carve. Serve with the gravy.