Hello Everyone, I just discovered this forum, and am VERY grateful it exists. I am a long-time "old school" smoker, having wood-chunk smoked hundred of things in my char-broil barrel smoker. Ribs, chicken, pork butt, brisket, and various other things. And done a fairly decent job, over they years, ... I think :-)
But this is the first time I will be smoking a whole turkey, and first time with an electric smoker, which I just bought. I have read through a number of very helpful recipes, techniques, etc to guide me in smoking my 13.25 lb fresh-from-a-local-farm bird, which I will be brining for about 20 hours. I will be smoking at about 250-275 (the MES does waver a bit, from what I could tell from yesterday's Dry Run) I am figuring about 8 hours, plus about 1/2 hour of resting.
A few things I have NOT been able to find out in my search, so here I am hoping for a few pointers.
- As many of you know there is a small tray at the bottom for water, supposedly to help keep the target moist. Do you suggest that I make sure that tray usually has water in it, or is one fill enough? (I am assuming that first fill will evaporate in about an hour...?)
- Masterbuilt recommends using one cup of wood chips in the box (I will be using apple), That burns off in about an hour. If my goal is a medium smoke, how many times should I replenish the chips would you say?
- Will putting a foil pan on the bottom shelf with some water to catch the drippings (more of a keep-the-smoker-clean thing than a cooking thing) have any impact on the cooking time or temperature control?
- The 250-275 target temp is about 1/2 way on the (non-digital) temperature control dial. I think full on would bring the temp to about 400. For the last 30-45 minutes of cooking, I plan to rub the skin with some cooking oil and put the dial all the way up, with the hope of getting some crisp on the skin. Your thoughts?
Many thanks in advance for feedback, and HAPPY THANKSGIVING to all you fellow smokers!