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T-day turkey a big hit

post #1 of 3
Thread Starter 
After reading on this forum that I would need to spatchcock my turkey to avoid contamination of the meat,17.5lb in my case, I read up on how to do it then set to work. With the backbone removed, I placed the bird in my brine Tuesday night. Thursday morning, I set my Masterbilt gas smoker at 350 and prepped the bird. After removing from the brine, I patted him dry and applied yellow mustard to hold the dry rub in place. I then applied a liberal coating of Montreal Chicken dry rub and a light sprinkling of Emiril's Cajun seasoning. Bird then went into the smoker skin-side up. Wood chips then went in the wood pan. An empty foil pan was placed on a lower rack to catch the drippings, but no water was used in the water tray. Applewood chips which had been soaked in a mixture of water and Maker's Mark bourbon..Mmmmm. The heat was kept at 325 but creeped up to 350 the last hour. Meat hit 170 IT after 4.5 hours (a little over 15 minutes/lb). When the bird was taken out it had a dark brown skin and the meat was tender as could be. Legs fell out of the socket as I removed him from the smoker rack. This had to be the best turkey I've ever tasted. All the family loved it. We'll package the leftovers up for the kids to take home then smoke up another one for my wife and I after a trip to pick up some more Makers :)
post #2 of 3

Good job!! Glad it was a hit. Just for future reference, if you're cooking at 350˚ there is no real need to spatch the bird for safety's sake. A whole bird will cook quickly enough at that temp to safely exit the danger zone well under the recommended 4 hours. However, spatching does speed the whole process and make for a more evenly done bird, at least in my experience.

post #3 of 3
Thread Starter 
You're right. It hit 140 IT at about 3.5 hours and it was a very evenly cooked bird. Skin wasn't as crispy as I had hoped, but may have been due to heavy dose of rub I applied. Spatching will be my go-to method from now on.
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