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first time smoking a turkey

puck5905

Newbie
1
10
Joined Nov 27, 2013
ok so here's the story my girlfriend volunteered us to host thanksgiving dinner for her family this year and i couldn't figure out why until i opened my birthday gift this week and it was a new electric smoker. I do have some minor experience with smokers from working at a restaurant but we never did turkey, so this will be my first time on my own with a little bit of holiday pressure haha. I have an 18 pound turkey that was pre-injected when bought. I also have plenty of apple wood to use as well. Are there any suggestions on how to cook bird with temps, times, marinades, ect...?
 

kc5tpy

Master of the Pit
4,344
184
Joined May 12, 2013
WOW!!!!!  SO NO PRESSURE HERE!!!  AND YOU HAVE PLENTY OF TIME!!!  You are going to have to wing this but it will turn out great.  Forget the brine, marinade, rub, praying to the smoking Gods or waiting for the stars to align.  It has been injected ( injected with what? No matter, too late.) so will go with that.  Salt and pepper rub, maybe some thyme and or a little sage in melted butter or veg oil.  Keep it simple.  As this is a first try, I would spatchcock that turkey and cook.  OK so that isn't great for presentation but you can do that next year.  Present it sliced at the table.  You haven't said what electric smoker you have ( again no matter. Too late ).  Do you have a good meat therm?  You can not rely on the therm that comes with the smoker for smoke chamber temps.  They are almost always wrong.  If you have a portable oven therm put it in the smoker.  Shoot for about 270-280 temp in the smoker and after around 6-7 hours push the temp to 325-350 to crisp the skin.  You should cook the bird to about 165-170 internal temp when measured in the thigh.  Then rest for 1 hour.  Temp control in the smoker is the key and should be learned with practice.  You are about to take a crash course.  Just keep calm, hang in and always insure your guests that everything is under control.  
  This isn't rocket science.  You can do this.  Experience makes a better finished product but I an sure you and your family will have a great meal.  Attack.  Improvise.  Adapt.  Good luck.  Let us know how it went.  Keep Smokin!


Danny
 

kc5tpy

Master of the Pit
4,344
184
Joined May 12, 2013
BTW.  Welcome.  I see this is your first post.  Please take some time and swing over to Roll Call and introduce yourself so that we may give you a proper "Hello".  All info you can provide us with such as smoker type, location and so on will help us answer any questions you may have.  Keep Smokin!

Danny
 

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