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First turkey X2 - It was a cold, rainy and windy Presidents day.

Discussion in 'Poultry' started by bpopovitz, Feb 23, 2011.

  1. I had a lady at my dojo contact me regarding smoking some turkeys.  I told her that I'd never done that but I had done some whole chickens, and said if she was will I'd give it a try for her.  She paid me by giving me two turkeys to smoke (one for her and one for me) as well as 2 dozen farm fresh eggs from their own chickens... LOVE THAT...

    On Sunday I got both turkeys out of the fridge to get them ready to brine.  I didnt notice the size when she gave them to me a few days earlier still partially frozen.  I just know that the one barely would fit in my smoker.  One was 13.5 lbs and the other was just over 21.  UGH...will they get abouve 140 in time????

    So I started with Tip's Slaughterhouse brine except I used some of Emerils Essence (my version without the salt) and I also skipped the celery seed since I couldnt find it in the spice rack.  The only container I had big enough was an old plastic tote that i scrubbed with bleach real well.  I did check the mfg website and said it was foodsafe....  I Started the brining at 11:00 AM Sunday and around 11:00 that night I turned them over since they werent completely submerged.  Also I just forgot I didnt have onion powder so I used dride minced onion.


    On Monday pulled them out of the water, patted them dry rubbed with a bit of olive oil and some more Essence.


    Used some butcher twine to truss them up a bit (only one shown here)..

    Both in the smoker. 


    I used Hickory chunks and apple chips and instead of using the chip pan with the lid on it.  I left the lid off and wrapped the chips in aluminum foil with a very small opening for TBS to escape.  In the water pan I used a 50/50 mix of Blue Moon and water.  I tried keeping the temp at 300 but given the wind and rain I had a hard time and it took about an hour to recover after adding the cold birds.

    I put the probes in about 3 hours into the smoke and the temp was at 130.... WOW I'll make the 140 mark in 4 hours.... 

    First bird (small one) came out 7 hours after starting.  Big bird came out almost 9 hours.  Here's the big bird, It is sitting on a 13*9 glass baking dish....


    I have no money shots on a plate as we didnt eat any of our bird and the other is going back to that wonderful lady at the dojo.  I do have a shot of it all vaccuum packed and frozen for future.


    I kept it real simple, brine, Essence, olive oil, heat & smoke.  I did pick at some of it while carving.  It was juicy and delicious. 

    Thanks for looking.
  2. fpnmf

    fpnmf Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    Looks fantastic!!!

  3. les3176

    les3176 Master of the Pit

    Nice job on those big birds!!
  4. adiochiro3

    adiochiro3 Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    Nice work!  The very first thing I ever smoked was a turkey, and it turned out great -- got me hooked on the craft oh so many years ago.  Wait til your family tastes that thing; you're on the hook for Thanksgiving every year from now on!!! LOL![​IMG]
  5. cassman

    cassman Fire Starter

    Nice job on those birds!!
  6. tyotrain

    tyotrain Master of the Pit

    Nice job on the birds. They look real tasty [​IMG]
  7. SmokinAl

    SmokinAl SMF Hall of Fame Pitmaster Staff Member Moderator OTBS Member ★ Lifetime Premier ★

    Great job Brian. Those birds look real tasty!
  8. chef willie

    chef willie Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    There ya go..was waiting for the Q/view.....look mighty fine from where I'm sitting...hope you made some killer stock outta the carcass
  9. If those birds taste half as good as they look ...you will have some great eating there.  [​IMG]You make me want to smoke that turkey i have in the freezer SOON.
  10. Thanks Chef, I froze the carcass to save for some stock at a later time. 


    They turned out real good.  I was happy for my first attempt.

    I'm on the hook for thanksgiving every year anyway.  Even if it's not turkey I did a few fatties for last year and well you guys now how it is with fatties... They are a hit with everyone.

    Thanks for your kind words.  I have to say I was nervous.  I've done PP quite a few fatties, a few chuckies, sirloin tip roast and some whole chickens but the big birds, well that's a whole new game there. 

    If anyone reading this thread has been thinking about a turkey. Well my advice to you is go for it.  Keep it simple and enjoy.  This has got to be the best hobby (if you can call cooking and eating a hobby) of all time.  There are definite zen like qualities with smoking meat, afterall, "it's done when it's done".

    Thanks for reading.