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Snowed in Turkey Breast in MES 30

post #1 of 12
Thread Starter 

Well, I thought we were going to get snowed in today here in Bucks County, PA. When to the grocery store after work on Thursday, i decided to browse the meat section to find something to smoke. I was fortunate to find already thawed minimally processed Turkey breasts, and on sale!


I have done many turkeys since I started smoking about 5 years ago. This was my second in my new MES30. The first turned out OK, but I wasn't thrilled with the results. I was smoking 6 turkey legs and a few wings at the same time, so I think it just didn't get as much attention as it deserves and it showed in the results.


I was excited to give it another whirl and the results were great. Brined overnight, rinsed/dried/rested for about an hour. Rubbed with a wet rub and then smoked in 50/50 Apple and Maple chips.


The brine I am constantly tweaking as I haven't found the perfect one yet.


I am sold on the wet rub which i found here: http://agoodappetite.blogspot.com/2009/05/smoked-turkey-breast.html I have used it on every turkey I have made and have not altered it one bit; LOTS of great flavors. I like the outside of my turkey salty, so i do not mind. If you are sensitive to salt, you may want to cut it in half to start. 


Getting ready for a nap...


Rinsed, Dried, Rested and Rubbed




This is the first time I tried breast side down, until it reached about 120, then I flipped.


Final results...




The rib cage was split when I opened the package. (never seen that before...) But it made carving a lot easier as the two pieces split without much effort.


Sorry I didn't get a sliced picture or have any great presentation. It didn't last long enough. I think my wife and 3 year old liked it... :) 


As you can imagine, being cooped with with a 3 year old (and a 7 month old) on a blistery cold day can lead to a few toddler tantrums...My 3 year old won me back by saying "Daddy, I really like the brine." and then ate 3 helpings of turkey. And as i write this, just asked for a 4th helping as a "snack". Made my day.


Anyways, wanted to share. 


Happy Smoking!

post #2 of 12

So, your 3 year old knows what a brine is? And, you gave your 3 year old, 4 helpings of that turkey.  Wow!

post #3 of 12

You can't do any better than family asking for more. It just don't get better.


Congrats on a good smoke. Don't ya just love how ya hands still smell?

post #4 of 12
Thread Starter 

She watched me make the brine and asked what it was. I told her it was a brine and that it makes the turkey tasty. I don't know how she remembered that i brined it the next day but it was a pretty cool moment.


Is there something wrong with her eating the 3 helpings of turkey? Like a lot of 3 year olds she is a tough eater at times. Pasta, cheese and fruit are no problem at all. Anytime she is willing to eat protein other than a chicken nugget, we cash in and let her have at it!

post #5 of 12
Thread Starter 

Completely agree FoamHeart. My favorite part is that the smoker was running in the garage. I had a fan on a low setting to push the smoke out the garage door. As i was shoveling the driveway i would occasionally get a waft of the delicious aroma. Kept me shoveling for hours!

post #6 of 12
Tasty looking bird!

My seven year old boy has been cooking in the kitchen with us since he was 2. He made his first brine at 4!
post #7 of 12

:drool:    nice , :icon_exclaim:

post #8 of 12

What temp did you cook at?

post #9 of 12
Thread Starter 
275 the whole way. Skin didn't crisp, by was still soft and delicious.
post #10 of 12

So you used the brine that was on that page with the wet rub?  I'm going to do a turkey breast soon and this looks really good.

post #11 of 12
Thread Starter 
I started with that brine originally and enjoyed the results...but my need to tweak led me over the years to modify it. I am still tweaking, but I have gotten rave reviews on my most recent brine combination, which I have used the past 2-3 times for breasts, wings and legs.

The key to this turkey is getting the wet rub under the skin as much as possible.

I like my smoked turkey to have a salty flavor. If you are sensitive to that, decrease salt and/or soy.

Here is an what i usually go with.

10-12 cups water - whatever will fit into your storage container with the turkey - sometimes i use less water to dissolve the ingredients and then supplement with ice to cool quickly
1/2 cup kosher salt
1/2 c soy sauce
1/2 c brown sugar - I have used light and dark and never noticed a major difference. Haven't tried raw sugar yet.
1 t cayenne pepper
1 medium shallot or small onion - I usually leave in large wedges or pieces to make removal easier.
1 - 3 medium clove garlic, smashed
Zest of 1 lemon, removed in large strips with a vegetable peeler (I have used lime when I didn't have a lemon)
10 thyme sprigs (or a tablespoon or two of dried) - I have done both...go with what you have on hand.
8 sage leaves (or a tablespoon or two of dried) - I have done both...go with what you have on hand.
4 bay leaves
1 tablespoon whole allspice berries
1-2 tablespoons of whole Black Peppercorns

I cannot take full credit for this brine recipe, it is a combination of two i found on the web.
Original recipes for brines can be found here:

Happy Smoking!
post #12 of 12

That seems like an awful lot of volume for a turkey breast.  I'll certainly give this a shot.  Thanks for the recipe.  I'll have to pick up a few items, I don't have any allspice berries (although I'll probably leave those out) we also used up the last of the soy sauce with the pepper steak the other day.

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