13 pound bird, brined 24 hours in Chef JimmyJ's brine. Rubbed under the skin and on top of skin with herbed butter (thyme, sage, garlic). With a large bundle of fresh thyme shove up where the sun never shined. Dried in fridge uncovered for 12 hours.
Bird into smoker at 10am
Heated up the smoker for half an hour before the bird went in. Planned on eating at 2pm. Smoker temp stabilized at 315 for almost the entire cook. In the last half hour it rose to 340. Used Apple and pecan chips.
At NOON.... breast temp was 165, thigh 173. I pulled the bird out of the smoker. I still had an hour to go on some other stuff I was cooking inside the house. (Butternut squash - baked, and stuffing). So this 13 pound bird got done in TWO hours. I set it on the countertop, no foil, and continued cooking.
Stuffing was italian sausage, mushrooms (lots of mushrooms), wild rice, with the obligatory onions and celery sautéed before adding to stuffing. Bread used in the stuffing was lightly toasted earlier this morning. Apple and Oat bread.
So after sitting an HOUR on the counter, I started dismantling the bird. It was still so hot inside I couldn't hold it. I slabbed off the breast halves whole and sliced 'em on a cutting board for the serving platter.
Dinner was served at 1:15 (45 minutes earlier than planned)
This was one of the best tasting turkeys I've done so far. At 2:30 we had the entire kitchen cleaned up and everything put away. So now we can relax, watch TV, and enjoy a few adult beverages :)
Hope y'all are having a great day.