My husband butchered my turkeys yesterday since I was out of town (they're my little pets, so I don't hang around for butchering day). He left the smallest one in brine in the fridge for me to smoke today. The breast alone is 11 pounds and the legs/thighs are seperate and I'll put them in later. We dislike skin-on on our chicken or Thanksgiving turkeys, so he didn't pluck them, and instead removed the skin and all. So today is experiment #1. So far she was in a brine of just water and some salt overnight. I did inject her with a mix of Chicken broth, 1/8 cup of melted butter and a dash of garlic juice. Then rubbed olive oil over her and put a dry rub of rosemary, salt, garlic flakes, a little sage and black pepper. The smoker is warming up currently and I'm using an apple/hickory mix of chips. Not sure how long this is going to take, but I'm aiming for a smoker temp around 230 to start and watching the meat thermometer to try to make the 4 hour rule. It seems like not a lot of people remove skins prior to smoking, so thought I'd share my experiences here for curiosity. Here's "Turkey Girl" before she goes in.....
Smoking one of my turkey's today without skin
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I pour olive oil in my hands and then rub it all over the bird before I put the dry rub on. I've done this to chicken that I've removed the skins from in the past and it turns out good. This is a first try on a turkey breast, but I'm thinking that if it works on chicken, it should work on turkey.
Just hit 165 IT after almost 6 hours. It smells incredible. Wrapped it in foil and am letting it sit for 20 minutes or so while hubby and I have a drink and the kids finish a card game their playing. It's all golden brown and I'm crossing fingers that it's still moist and juicy inside. I'll let you know in a bit :)
It was delicious! No worries on the inside being nice and juicy. So, yes!, the turkey can be done with skin off and still turn out yummy. Which is a good thing, because that's how hubby butchered my other 2 turkeys too :)
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We do poultry skin off all the time. The wife prefers is that way. I save the skin for making Schmaltz. If you haven't had biscuits or chocolate chip cookies, or pie crust made with schmaltz your missing out!
Ok, well back when I still listened to Doctors, I had a clinical dietician tell me to use mayo. I hate it when they are right...... but she was and mayo which is simply egg whites and oil makes a great protective shell when grilling. I have not tried smoking using it.
Its a pretty breast, I bet it was delicious. And as Pop says, you know what went into making it too!
Interesting Foamheart......I may have to try that next time I"m smoking pheasants. my boys and I just about have 24 roosters cleaned so far today. 160 birds to go.....we can sacrifice one to a new mayo experiment one of these days :)
Wow in the bird business!
A friend once brought me a dozen of his pheasants from his yearly bird pilgrimage and they are sooo lean, I injected w/bacon grease and spices and wrapped with bacon. he liked 'em but I still thought 'em dry. The next year he decided I grilled 'em the year before and he could do that. So he had a party, salted and peppered 'em and put his whole weeks bag limit on his pit and we all drank a lot to get them down. He was a good customer so the next year I invited him to come help where he could see what was done.
I guess I did good, every year after that his bride always sent me one of her world famous pumpkin roll cakes for the holidays! They were to die for!
Ya know I don't miss plucking chickens....LOL
I was a bit scared when I opened the smoker at 165 and took my first look at it, but one slice into it and all was good!
and nah.....not really bird business, just got tired of the grocery store chicken and wondering where it actually came from so decided to raise our own pheasants to reduce the chicken consumption. No plucking around here,it's all skinned like you would a grouse.