15 November 2005

The Turkey

Last Saturday the church I serve had their annual Harvest Supper. I decided to grill a turkey. I have been wanting to experiment with this method for some time, but never motivated enough just to do for myself. So when I heard the church needed a couple of more turkeys (no comments from the peanut gallery) I volunteered.

The Recipe:
One turkey (mine was a 14 lber)
Brine it over night in a clean five gallon bucket.
For the brine bring one cup sugar, one cup of salt, couple cloves of garlic, some pepper, some mustard powder to a boil. Cool to room temp. then put bird in bucket and cover with brine and more water if needed. Let sit overnight in a cool spot. (it was 30 degrees in RI that night, so i sat it in the garage). Next day pat it dry and let set out to come to room temp. Then coat with bacon grease and pepper. Why bacon grease? We fried some bacon that morning and it was right there. I could have used olive oil, but come on - were talking bacon drippings, the gold of appalachian cooking. the nectar of hillbillies.

Prepare grill. Light your coals (i prefer hard wood chunks). When ready put a medium size aluminum pan on one side and coals on the other. Place a small handfull of woodchips on for smokiness. The Revs. Smalls gave us a nice smoker box to place directly on top of the coals. Place birdbreast side up over top of pan and grill for 1and 1/2 to 2 hours. My son needed to be rocked back to sleep so my timer went off at 1 and 1/2 hours, kids take precedent over turkey on grill.

Put another load of fresh hot coals and wood chips on.

Rotate bird so that other breast gets cooked, about an hour. Place probe thermometer in thigh till registers at least 170. Let bird rest then eat carve about 20 minutes after coming off grill.

here are some pics. it was too beautiful to cut.

here it is on the grill

here it is resting:

here it is in a serving platter

here is my plate that night.

mmm, grilled turkey with bacon grease.

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