Deep frying seems to be the new fad. Lots of folks have been seriously hurt by it (dropping in cold/frozen turkey with ice/water on/in it into hot oil.....very bad mistake! Though my brother claims to have fried a turkey with friends, I have never tried it or tasted it either. The fryers are usually sold as Bar B Que equipment. Often tall black tubes. I don't have interest in trying this....
Have sometimes used the bake-in plastic roasting bags for turkeys, chickens and roasts (but we use our own seasonings, not using the packs that come with the bags). Throw in ingredients, water, tie it up, put it in pan and bake till done. Quite nice. Pan stays clean, no clean up!
But most often we have baked/roasted the turkey at slow low temps with a foil tent like your mother. We place the bird in a large rectangular pan on top of a cross-wise grid of celery that is laying in water in the bottom of the pan. The bird is rubbed with butter and spices, stuffed with celery, parsley, spices (sometimes dressing), then is covered with foil for the longest time and only near the end is exposed to brown/crisp the surface. The water in the bottom keeps the bird moist because of the foil tent. The celery adds flavor to the drippings (that mix with water) that later become the gravy.
The idea of putting an apple inside sounds great. Might have to try that next time we have a bird. It would go great with our dressing/stuffing: made with apple chunks, celery, onion, raisins, parsley and lots of wonderful spices!