Turkey thread

blue_ridge

Sergeant
Supporter
Full Member
Minuteman
Dec 17, 2009
330
79
Eastern NC
Ok, since my wife and in-laws, who don’t appreciate smoke and salt in their giblets, don’t want me to smoke the Turkey this year, I’m gonna post my methods here, mostly so maybe someone else can get some use form them. My friends and co-workers have raved about my Turkey, so I’m pretty sure it’s decent and at least not garbage.

Brine - got to brine that bird. Even though I am reduced to cooking the Turkey in the oven this year, I will always DRY BRINE my bird. Couple of reasons. Wet brining requires you find a container big enough to submerge the bird AND refrigerate that container while brining. I’ve done it, but dry brining is better. The best reason to dry bring is the skin. Submerging the bird in wet brine means the skin will be soggy. I want the Turkey skin crispy. I do about a tablespoon of kosher salt per 5# of bird. I rub it on the outside and under the skin, both. Then I add cracked black pepper, thyme, rosemary and garlic powder.

Spices: use whatever you lIke. Salt, pepper, rosemary, thyme, garlic and oregano are time tested and proven. The key is rubbing them inside and outside the skin. Take the skin from the back of the breasts and wedge your hand underneath. Carefully work your finger under the skin. You should be able to slowly work your hands under the skin, without breaking it, almost all the way across the two Turkey breasts. Now grab some salt, pepper and spices to rub them as far aback as you can under the skin. Rub spices throughly under the turkey breast skin. You can even include some butter or olive,oil in this step.

I dry brine the night before About 18 hrs before I start cooking. I sue ally get about a 15# Turkey to serve 6-8 people. Here’s how iI reverse engineer the cooking schedule:

4:00 Serve to table
3:45 Carve turkey
3:15 Pull Turkey out of oven at, rest for 30 min (I cook until internal temp is 155. After I pull it from the oven it will continue to rise to the target temp of 165 in th middle of the breast)
2:00 cover wings and legs with foil
11:30 Put Turkey in oven (I insert probe from ThermoWorks Smoke remote thermometer now)
10:30 Remove Turkey from fridge so it can warm up from fridge temps some
3pm Day before - dry brine with 1 tbsp kosher salt per 5# of Turkey - rubbing inside and outside of skin, also use your favorite spices like rosemary, thyme, oregano and black pepper
3-4 days before - thaw turkey - remove from freezer into fridge.


Anyone else who has tips and tricks, add them here.
 
Last edited:
  • Like
Reactions: BScore

Coyote-6

Sergeant of the Hide
Full Member
Minuteman
Jan 4, 2020
151
145
____
My friend, I commiserate with you. Your knowledge, while not appropriately utilized will serve others into great futures.... While I likely won't deviate from my normal wild (bow hunted in Northern KY) turkey smoking this year, I saved this for our next turkey meal to see if you're better than I ;).

Happy Thanksgiving
 

blue_ridge

Sergeant
Supporter
Full Member
Minuteman
Dec 17, 2009
330
79
Eastern NC
My friend, I commiserate with you. Your knowledge, while not appropriately utilized will serve others into great futures.... While I likely won't deviate from my normal wild (bow hunted in Northern KY) turkey smoking this year, I saved this for our next turkey meal to see if you're better than I ;).

Happy Thanksgiving
Thank you sir. Utmost respect to the wild Turkey Thanksgiving. Definitely the most earned and rewarding meal! The boiling and plucking is a whole other skill set.

I’m adding some additional steps above that I left out.