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Quick Turkey Question

post #1 of 18
Thread Starter 

So I've done a bunch of research on the site for smoking a turkey! I'm doing a trial run today (13 LB bird) so the Thanksgiving bird isn't a disaster!

 

So I brined the bird using the slaughterhouse recipe on this site - for 12 hours (didn't feel I needed a long brine as the bird is already brined in an 8% solution bought from grocery) - mixed up some olive oil/louisina cajun spice/pepper/garlic powder/onion powder/seasoning salt - and covered the bird in this stuff...

 

It's now in the smoker at 275 - 300....

 

Couple questions - I'm currently using the the water pan - is this needed? Or can I take out? I've seen both ways on the site...I don't have any sand right now...so it's either with water or without..

 

I typically use a spritz of cider vinegar/apple juice when I do butts/ribs - do I need to spritz the turkey - or just let it smoke?

 

Didn't twine the bird - will do that on TGiving day though

 

Any help here would be greatly appreciated...always get GREAT advice here...Thanks!

 

I'll do some Q View once done...

 

Thanks again!

post #2 of 18

If you can control your temp without the water pan you will be just fine.  The water pans main job is to help you stabilize your temp and to keep you from having huge temp spikes.   You can spritz a turkey again this is a personal preference.   I think you will find as long as you keep an eye on your temps and don't pull your turkey too early or too late this is a very easy very satisfing smoke.

post #3 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by Big B Smokin View Post

So I've done a bunch of research on the site for smoking a turkey! I'm doing a trial run today (13 LB bird) so the Thanksgiving bird isn't a disaster!

 

So I brined the bird using the slaughterhouse recipe on this site - for 12 hours (didn't feel I needed a long brine as the bird is already brined in an 8% solution bought from grocery) - mixed up some olive oil/louisina cajun spice/pepper/garlic powder/onion powder/seasoning salt - and covered the bird in this stuff...

 

It's now in the smoker at 275 - 300....

 

Couple questions - I'm currently using the the water pan - is this needed? No it's not needed, leave it in just don't put any water in it. Or can I take out? No. I've seen both ways on the site...I don't have any sand right now...so it's either with water or without..

 

I typically use a spritz of cider vinegar/apple juice when I do butts/ribs - do I need to spritz the turkey - or just let it smoke? If you have a pan under the turkey catching the juices add some chicken broth to it & baste the turkey with that every hour or so.

 

Didn't twine the bird - will do that on TGiving day though

 

Any help here would be greatly appreciated...always get GREAT advice here...Thanks!

 

I'll do some Q View once done...

 

Thanks again!  Good luck!



 

 

post #4 of 18

It sounds like you have everything situated pretty well. It's up to you weather you want to use the water pan or not. Some do some don't. I don't normally spritz my birds but some do so its a personal preference thing. Make sure you take some pictures.

post #5 of 18
Thread Starter 

Okay - Great! Thanks for the feedback!

 

One more question - bird has been in for 1 1/2 hours and IT is 110 degrees (in breast) at 275-300 degrees...does that IT sound about right? Or should I readjust the probe?

post #6 of 18

As long as you know your thermometer is accurate you need  to trust it. If you haven't tested it you really need  to. The more you poke the bird the more I worry about creating holes for juices to leak  out of. Are you sure you aren't touching a bone or anything like that?

post #7 of 18

I believe that the bird it normally probed in the thigh as that is usually the part of the bird that takes the longest.

post #8 of 18

It sounds about right, I usually put the probe in the thick part of the thigh between the thigh & breast being careful not to touch any bone. It needs to get to 175 in the thigh. When the breast gets too 165 you may want to re-position the probe to the thigh to see where that is at. Or if you have another probe put one in the thigh too.

post #9 of 18
Thread Starter 

So best case scenario is 175 in the thigh & 180 in the breast?

 

3 hours into the cook, bird is at 140 degrees

post #10 of 18
Thread Starter 

pics to come


Edited by Big B Smokin - 11/19/11 at 11:36am
post #11 of 18
Thread Starter 

Alright - well definitely had the turkey upside down with the probe in the back!! That's pretty special!!

 

Flipped her over - put the probe in the breast and reading 170 degrees - moved the probe to thigh and at 155...Foil covered the breast to keep in moisture

 

Cranking heat up to 300 degrees and waiting for thigh to reach 160 degrees - then will pull and cover in blanket/ place in cooler...

 

I guess that's why we do trial runs...right?!?!

 

Wow!

post #12 of 18

Hey B it sounds like your having a fun day. Hope the turkey comes out good for you!

 

It's also refreshing to hear you admit to a mistake and post it . thumb1.gif

 

Were all friends here & no ego's involved, we can just laugh about it.

post #13 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by Big B Smokin View Post

So best case scenario is 175 in the thigh & 180 in the breast?

 

3 hours into the cook, bird is at 140 degrees


Not exactly....Best case...Breast 165*F and Thigh at 175....The hard part is getting there...Icing the breast to have it colder than the legs going in to the smoker helps ....Not Tying or Trussing the bird helps to get heat to the Thighs....Covering the Breast with foil as it hits 150*F is good so the legs can catch up....Any temp much over 165* in the breast it will be Dry...JJ
 

...

post #14 of 18


 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Chef JimmyJ View Post


Not exactly....Best case...Breast 165*F and Thigh at 175....The hard part is getting there...Icing the breast to have it colder than the legs going in to the smoker helps ....Not Tying or Trussing the bird helps to get heat to the Thighs....Covering the Breast with foil as it hits 150*F is good so the legs can catch up....Any temp much over 165* in the breast it will be Dry...JJ
 

...


  X2, I usually foil the breast after a couple hours to keep the golden color and to slow the breast down a bit.

 

                 

 

post #15 of 18
Thread Starter 

Thanks everyone for the fantastic advice!! The breast came out a bit dry..hopefully tomorrow will go a little smoother!

 

Here's a pic of the final product - I thought I got pics of the bird carved..but apparently not!

 

Notice the impressive grill marks across the breast from placing bird upside down!! HA!!

 

Happy Thanksgiving!

 

trial turkey1.jpg

post #16 of 18

Boy it really looks good! 

 

The color is perfect!

post #17 of 18

Awesome color on the bird, Maybe it will be more juicy tomorrow

It looks great icon14.gif

post #18 of 18

Spatchcock the bird and cut into the joints, ala Jacques Pepin. That helps it cook much more evenly.

 

Starting at 5:20 in this video....

 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ogwXvV_LcJE

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