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10 lb. Turkey Smoke Gone Bad (I think)

post #1 of 19
Thread Starter 
I think my Turkey smoke went bad wrong. I started with & then I brined using a brine recipe I copied off of the net somewhere, don't remember where exactly but the recipe was (Brine for 12 lb. Turkey
Spicy Chicken Rub
1 C. Kosher Salt
1 C. Brown Sugar
1 C. Molasses
1 C. Honey
1 C. Apple Juice
1/2 C. Coarse Ground Black Pepper
1/2 C. Garlic Powder
2 Gallons of Water
Mix ingredients in a 5 Gallon Bucket. Brine Turkey for 12 - 18 hours in fridge. Rinse, rub & smoke for 6-8 hours @ 250F. Internal temp should reach 170F. ), so we have & then I rubbed the bird, . Then I popped that puppy in the smoker using a combination of mesquite & pecan with Royal Oak Lump. (THANK YOU RICH FOR THIS!!!) I flipped the bird after the internal temp reached 120, & once finished, these's are my results: . I continuously smoked & only added more wood when I could not smell any smoking. I stopped smoking at 140F but my family was hungry, so I finished it in an electric oven. The internal temp at this time was 153F & it took another 1.5 to reach 180F. I would appreciate all comments & critics. (Personally, I know I should have not taken it out of the smoker but my child is 9 & needed to get to bed for school the next day, hence my moving the bird. I don't normally do this as I grill / smoke on weekends & I started on Monday at 1 PM.) Now the skin was totally non edible as it was rubbery. The breast meat was a tad dry but still tender (if that makes sense), & the dark meat was tender & juicy. (Go figure.) The flavor was incredible. P.S. At the time that I typed this, I am headed out to work & guess what I took for dinner? That's right! A Turkey sandwich. Why not? I made it.icon_cool.gif
post #2 of 19
So why "gone bad"? I think it looks good

I very rarely have luck with poultry due time I guess
post #3 of 19
I'm not sure why you think it went bad. If you can't smoke a chicken or turkey at 275 plus, your gonna get rubbery skin. I just pull it off. My opinion is you may have over cooked it a tad.... you can pull at 170, but other than that it looks like a pretty successful bird to me.
post #4 of 19
Nice job on the turkey! It looks great. PDT_Armataz_01_34.gif Nothing wrong with finishing something in the oven, I've got kids, it happens.

Poultry skin does not get crispy at 250. You have two options if you are looking for crispy skin. Either smoke it at a higher temp like 325 or crisp the skin at a higher temp after it's done by using the smoker or a grill.
post #5 of 19
Smoke turkey at 275° - 325° to help have a crispier skin.

Take the birds internal temp ta 170° in the breast er meaty part a the thigh, it will carry over an easy 5° - 10° after ya pull it outa the smoker.

The brine will give ya a tender an juicy bird.

Ya got alotta sugars there with mollases, honey an the brown sugar. The blackier color comes from them carmelizin durin the cookin process.

Looks perty darn good ta me, ya just overcooked him a tad is all.

Many smoked foods can be finished off in the oven if ya need ta. I do that with pork butts on quite a few occasions. After ya foil em they don't know the difference!
post #6 of 19
exactly what he said. That was a lot of sugar, aside from whatever was in the rub. I did mention that low & slow was not usually done on poultry like it is on tough cuts of meat. It just looks like it was in the smoker a bit too long, hence the dry breast, other than that I bet it tasted good. Like I said, it gets better by trial and error. You're on the right path so don't be in a rush for perfection right out of the gate. It's all good my friend..
post #7 of 19
I haven't smoked a turkey in a while, but when I cook them in the oven, I try to shoot for 165F in the thick part of the thigh. I have hit 180 when I wasn't paying attention, and the dark meat was OK, but the white was overcooked and dry.
post #8 of 19
Overall it looks like a fine smoke to me PDT_Armataz_01_37.gif I agree with Tip and Rich on the amount of sugar used being the reason for the dark skin. About the only thing I would have done is raise the smoker temp to the 300-325 range or when I put it in the oven to finish (which is fine by me) I would have kicked the temp up to 350 to crisp the skin. finished temp was a bit high and more than likely explains the white meat being a little dry.
post #9 of 19
I'm also with Tip, Jerry, Rich said it could have been all the sugar that gave you the dark skin or it could have been the amount of heavy smoke I saw in the pictures. But really how did the bird taste i didn't recall reading that in your desription of the bird. I would also would smoke your birds at a higher temp maybe 290-325 or so I do mine at about 295*.
post #10 of 19
I've done worse. PDT_Armataz_01_04.gif Just pull the skin off and go for it. I bet it made good sammies.
post #11 of 19
Looks Okay to me... Edible is what counts...PDT_Armataz_01_37.gif
post #12 of 19
Thread Starter 
Because I did not mention it, the rub is a blend of garlic powder, kosher salt, black pepper, paprika, onion powder, cayenne pepper, oregano & basil. My wife makes it & I promise you, it is so good that we don't put bbq sauce on our ribs anymore.

My apologies. The bird was excellent past the first layer of dyness from the white meat. It still was not that dry & ver edible. Nothing but good eating. My wife & daughter along with a neighbor who got a taste verified that. As for the rest of the comments, Thank you all. I thought I ruined it because of the skin but I now see that the skin is just a formality. So, these are the lessons I take away from this smoke:

Use a little less wood chunks.
Smoke at a hotter temp with Poultry.
Maybe ease up on the sugar in the brine. So Thank you all for allowing me to share.

Again, Huge Thanks to Rich PDT_Armataz_01_34.gifPDT_Armataz_01_34.gif:icon_mrgree n: for the Lump. (It was so good & the ash was so light.)

Can't wait to show off my second Briskette I am cooking this Friday. Going to be an all day smoke starting at 5 AM as I am entertaining on Saturday at 1 PM & I want to enjoy my Gin & Pineapple juice drinks. Pictures will follow for sure.
post #13 of 19
Hey, ever smoke is a learnin experience, thats what the craft is all about. Everbody keeps learnin.

Ya got a grate base ta start on there!
post #14 of 19
Just remember your a cave man. When all siad and done your not goin hungry. Looks good BTW.!!points.gif
post #15 of 19
Thread Starter 


That's right. As long as the T-Rex are running, my family eats. Thanx for the comments guys.
post #16 of 19
What he said. But I think it looks good. Congrats on a smoke that the family liked.
post #17 of 19
A trick I learned somewhere was to take cheese cloth and dip it in melted butter so its soaked. Then take the cheese cloth and completely wrap it around the bird before smoking it. What I have found is that the butter helps hold in moisture, keeps the skin from turning black, and sometimes it even turns out crispy. I go higher temp and pull it out at 185 and this is what I am consistently getting:

The SOL helps the cook stay away from the smoker and let it do it's thing!
post #18 of 19
Thread Starter 


What a nice bird!!! Interestingly enough, my wife being from the south & a handy little baker, has some cheese cloth. I think I will try this next time. Thanks for the tip.
post #19 of 19
Glad to help if it does. I just melted a 1/2 stick of butter in a small cup in the microwave, then put the cloth in it. unravel the cloth and spread it out, then set into the cup. (I put the folded cloth in and nearly repainted the kitchen trying to unravel the buttery wad...what a mess!)

First I cut the cloth just big enough to wrap all around the bird 1 time, maybe a bit more. I used the cloth to hold in the wings from spreading out. Plus it was put on after the rub was applied. Give it a shot and let us know what you think.
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