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First Smoked Turkey - not quite right

post #1 of 6
Thread Starter 

We're doing Thanksgiving at our house this year, after a 5 yr hiatus, and my husband decided he wanted to smoke the turkey this time.  But since not everything we've done has been successful we figured we should do a practice run first. Good thing we did.

I should probably say that we have a Brinkman electric smoker that has a water pan, and the chips go into a box on the heating element.  The top temp on the smoker is about 225 degrees.

We brined the turkey (approx 10lbs) with a tea/lemon brine recipe we got from a friend.  We dried it up real good, and coated the skin with oil. We didn't stuff the turkey with anything since I was concerned about getting the turkey up to 140 degrees with the 4 hr window.

We happily smoked the turkey, using apple wood, until it got to about 150 degrees, then put it into the oven until it go to about 170 and put it into a cooler to keep warm until we were ready to eat.

The meat tasted great, but the skin was rubbery.  While my husband doesn't eat the skin (great, more for me), he knows that alot of people almost consider that the best part. So, what did we do wrong? Should I have used the broiler, not the oven? Should I have put it on the grill on high?

We'll probably do the Thanksgiving turkey in the oven, but just wanted make sure we got this right the next attempt.

post #2 of 6
Yep higher temps if you want crispy not rubbery skin.
post #3 of 6

Inares , hello. you can have a nicely smoked Turkey and crispier skin by doing the Bird in the smoker as you did , and at 140*F ( be patient it'll get there @225*F) , then place in a 350*F Oven to brown the skin...

 

That's the bad thing about Watt burners , temps. are lower than some like to cook at... saying that , I normally cook at  225*F on my Wood burner, :biggrin:

 

Have fun and . . .

post #4 of 6

You'd need to finish that turkey in the oven at about 350 for better skin texture.  I've smoked a bird or two. Lots of posts here.  One thing I've stopped doing is covering the bird with oil. I get better results by peeling up the skin under the breast and inserting pats of butter. NO oil on the skin. IMHO it does nothing.  No water in the pan.  The cavity is stuffed with citrus fruit.  Smoke at 250. Go easy on the wood chips. Poultry takes less smoke that pork or beef. 

Then the last hour of the smoke. I baste with melted butter with a little poultry seasoning in it.  I cook until the breast temp is exactly 165. The thighs will be slightly higher at that point.  I then take the bird out and let it loaf for one hour before carving. 

Thats the way I do it. Works for me. I'm sure there are other opinions. 

b

 

 

 

 

 

One last thing to consider.  Given the rising prices of beef lately Turkey is an even better value. We make 2 birds on the holidays.  One in the oven and one on the smoker. (In fact the gang here even voted on one of our cook offs.  oven VS the smoker. Great fun.  Of course I won and boy did that cost me...) b


Edited by BDSkelly - 10/19/14 at 8:13am
post #5 of 6
Quote:
Originally Posted by BDSkelly View Post
 

You'd need to finish that turkey in the oven at about 350 for better skin texture.  I've smoked a bird or two. Lots of posts here.  One thing I've stopped doing is covering the bird with oil. I get better results by peeling up the skin under the breast and inserting pats of butter. NO oil on the skin. IMHO it does nothing.  No water in the pan.  The cavity is stuffed with citrus fruit.  Smoke at 250. Go easy on the wood chips. Poultry takes less smoke that pork or beef. 

Then the last hour of the smoke. I baste with melted butter with a little poultry seasoning in it.  I cook until the breast temp is exactly 165. The thighs will be slightly higher at that point.  I then take the bird out and let it loaf for one hour before carving. 

Thats the way I do it. Works for me. I'm sure there are other opinions. 

b

 

 

 

 

 

One last thing to consider.  Given the rising prices of beef lately Turkey is an even better value. We make 2 birds on the holidays.  One in the oven and one on the smoker. (In fact the gang here even voted on one of our cook offs.  oven VS the smoker. Great fun.  Of course I won and boy did that cost me...) b


Looks awesome ! I'll be doing a test run in the next few weeks before Thanksgiving.

 

At what internal temperature do you put it in the oven (or crank up the smoker temp)? What else is in the cavity? Just lemons and limes?

 

Thanks

post #6 of 6

"BDSkelly

You'd need to finish that turkey in the oven at about 350 for better skin texture.  I've smoked a bird or two. Lots of posts here.  One thing I've stopped doing is covering the bird with oil. I get better results by peeling up the skin under the breast and inserting pats of butter. NO oil on the skin. IMHO it does nothing.  No water in the pan.  The cavity is stuffed with citrus fruit.  Smoke at 250. Go easy on the wood chips. Poultry takes less smoke that pork or beef. 

Then the last hour of the smoke. I baste with melted butter with a little poultry seasoning in it.  I cook until the breast temp is exactly 165. The thighs will be slightly higher at that point.  I then take the bird out and let it loaf for one hour before carving. Thats the way I do it. Works for me. I'm sure there are other opinions".

 

Boy howdy BD, that is a fine piece of work! I really like your technique and style. RAY

 

 

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