I have been delegated to make one of our Thanksgiving turkeys this year, and since I've never done one before I figured I should practice. I picked up a 14lb bird and threw it in a brine on Saturday morning. I know I'm not allowed to link to another site, but it was the Huffington Post "Ultimate Smoked Turkey" piece recipe. I didn't bother with the whole ice bag and whatever the recipe talks about, just threw it in a big stock pot and put it in the fridge. I smoked it with cherry wood between 300 and 350 for about 2.5 hours and it hit 160 so I pulled it. It came out great, as did the gravy. The only issue I had was that it took almost 2 hours for my UDS to get up to temperature. I think this is because I put the gravy pan in when I started the fire, and so a gallon of cold water had to be brought to boil and then water boils at 212 and the fire underneath struggled to bring it higher than that. I'm not sure there's a good solution to that, and since the gravy is delicious I may just have to suck it up and wait. Also, it started pouring, but thankfully my roommate and I rigged up an awesome tarp attached to the house and the garage. Here's she is:
It came out great, juicy and the skin is incredible. Just the perfect amount of smoke. It's a little salty, so next time I'm going to use a little less salt in the brine. I also was out enjoying some beverages last night and didn't take it out of the brine for like 14 hours, so next time I'll probably pull it after 9 or so.
I'm proud of our rain slick, so here's a picture right when I threw the turkey on. Of course, it stopped raining the second we spent an hour rigging it up.