Trying to hone in before the big day

  • Some of the links on this forum allow SMF, at no cost to you, to earn a small commission when you click through and make a purchase. Let me know if you have any questions about this.
SMF is reader-supported. When you buy through links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission.

JBCWCHS06

Smoke Blower
Original poster
Jul 30, 2022
129
108
I had a practice run of smoking my first turkey last night. Spatchcocked my bird and dry brined it for 2 days and then rubbed the skin on the outside and under with a herb compound butter. Pretty much a method from Chuds BBQ YouTube channel. Loved the way the actual meat turned out nice and juicy. Probably the juiciest turkey breast I've had. But ran into some problems and thought I could get some pointers on here. One I rubbed with the butter and the further I got along it started to almost harden and cake on the turkey and fall off in big chunks. Was my bird maybe a little too cold to rub with the butter should I let it come to room temp. And the skin was a tad disappointing. Was wanting a crispy skin but it ended up being kind of chewy. Is there something I could put on it as I cook it to get that crispy skin. Or should I do a more direct heat method cook with the skin side down for a majority of the cook. Thanks for any help.
 

Attachments

  • IMG_20221113_185655305.jpg
    IMG_20221113_185655305.jpg
    181.4 KB · Views: 13
  • IMG_20221113_194954513_HDR.jpg
    IMG_20221113_194954513_HDR.jpg
    179.6 KB · Views: 13
I'd go with a yes cold compound butter is harder to spread and more heat = crispy skin doesn't necessarily have to be turned upside down though. looks good though just a bit of tweakin probably
 
What temp did you cook the turkey at?

Cooking temps above 325* will help crisp the skin up. I also like indirect heat when cooking poultry. Direct heat increases your chances of burning the skin, and a black turkey isn't very appealing to the eye.

Chris
 
You should do 2 or 3 more experiments for "practice" ! (aka Turkey Sandwiches for days!)
 
I used to use butter on poultry . I always let it come to room temp , add any seasoning I wanted to use and whip it up . Then I just used my hands to rub it on the skin . For any butter under the skin I take some of the seasoned whipped butter and roll it into a log in plastic wrap and put it in the freezer . That way I can cut sections and slide under the skin and get it pushed farther in . It melts as the bird cooks . My go to now is injecting . If you want to dry brine , you could melt and inject the butter .

I never worry about skin on smoked poultry. Just get the meat nice and juicy and pull the skin off.
Same here .
Never bought smoked turkey at a BBQ place that came with skin .
 
Alternate: wet brine the bird, then use the rotisserie on a grill plus a smoke tube. Results are a delish moist bird with wonderful smoke flavor and crispy skin. Works every time!

FYI, do NOT stuff the bird if using a rotisserie! Food safety issue.....
 
What temp did you cook the turkey at?

Cooking temps above 325* will help crisp the skin up. I also like indirect heat when cooking poultry. Direct heat increases your chances of burning the skin, and a black turkey isn't very appealing to the eye.

Chris
I cooked it at 300 for about 3 hours might go a little longer then temp was 165 in the white meat and 185 in the dark but had some places that had some pink didn't know if that was undercooked or what. Well I don't know if it would be true direct heat because I would have the heat deflector plate and such still blocking the heat but debating cooking it skin side down next time
 
I used to use butter on poultry . I always let it come to room temp , add any seasoning I wanted to use and whip it up . Then I just used my hands to rub it on the skin . For any butter under the skin I take some of the seasoned whipped butter and roll it into a log in plastic wrap and put it in the freezer . That way I can cut sections and slide under the skin and get it pushed farther in . It melts as the bird cooks . My go to now is injecting . If you want to dry brine , you could melt and inject the butter .


Same here .
Never bought smoked turkey at a BBQ place that came with skin .
Did you let the turkey come up to the temp a little bit before rubbing it with butter I took it out of the fridge and rubbed it the soften butter right after thinking that's why it hardened up so fast
 
I cooked it at 300 for about 3 hours might go a little longer then temp was 165 in the white meat and 185 in the dark but had some places that had some pink didn't know if that was undercooked or what. Well I don't know if it would be true direct heat because I would have the heat deflector plate and such still blocking the heat but debating cooking it skin side down next time
Some pink meat is to be expected when you're smoking poultry. As long as your probes are telling you the meat has reached proper temps. 160 to 165 for white meat and 180 to 185 for the dark. Which it sounds like you achieved. I agree it sounds like the deflector plate is making it an indirect cook. So my only suggestion would be to bump the temps up to at least 325*. If your noticing that the skin is getting too dark then you can loosely tent the turkey in aluminum foil. The tenting won't affect the skins crispness.

Another question: Are you cooking the turkey in the aluminum pan or directly on the grate?

Chris
 
Did you let the turkey come up to the temp a little bit before rubbing it with butter I took it out of the fridge and rubbed it the soften butter right after thinking that's why it hardened up so fast
Maybe a little bit . I don't think you gain anything from rubbing butter on the surface , but nothing wrong about doing that . I dry brine plenty of chicken parts , then cook or grill at a high temp .
I brine and inject all whole birds these days . Season the skin with black pepper only , then cook hot and fast . 350 or above start to finish .
Skin should be rendered of the fat and completely tender .

This was cooked on a pellet grill . You can see the skin has split on the legs and the breast . So tender it melts in your mouth . Turkey will be about the same , but you have to hit that higher temp before the skin starts to get tough .
1668528750108.jpeg
If I want to smoke it , I bone and roll the breast . Still brine and inject .
Skin is just used to keep the meat moist .
The one on the right is boned out .
1668529053496.jpeg
Completely tender juicy turkey . Skin gets tossed .
1668529075947.jpeg
 
  • Like
Reactions: gmc2003 and zwiller
Some pink meat is to be expected when you're smoking poultry. As long as your probes are telling you the meat has reached proper temps. 160 to 165 for white meat and 180 to 185 for the dark. Which it sounds like you achieved. I agree it sounds like the deflector plate is making it an indirect cook. So my only suggestion would be to bump the temps up to at least 325*. If your noticing that the skin is getting too dark then you can loosely tent the turkey in aluminum foil. The tenting won't affect the skins crispness.

Another question: Are you cooking the turkey in the aluminum pan or directly on the grate?

Chris
Alright good deal I'm just a bit new to smoking so when relatives see the pink they freak out but I tell them it's done it just happens with smoked poultry. Alright I'm going bump the temp up a bit. I'm cooking on the grill grates only put it in the foil pan after it was done to rest.
 
  • Like
Reactions: gmc2003
Maybe a little bit . I don't think you gain anything from rubbing butter on the surface , but nothing wrong about doing that . I dry brine plenty of chicken parts , then cook or grill at a high temp .
I brine and inject all whole birds these days . Season the skin with black pepper only , then cook hot and fast . 350 or above start to finish .
Skin should be rendered of the fat and completely tender .

This was cooked on a pellet grill . You can see the skin has split on the legs and the breast . So tender it melts in your mouth . Turkey will be about the same , but you have to hit that higher temp before the skin starts to get tough .
View attachment 648693
If I want to smoke it , I bone and roll the breast . Still brine and inject .
Skin is just used to keep the meat moist .
The one on the right is boned out .
View attachment 648694
Completely tender juicy turkey . Skin gets tossed .
View attachment 648695
Thanks for the help might inject it with butter but also rub the outside with it as well. What kind of pepper do you use would like to try some 16 mesh black pepper but can't find any around here in a store and scared I won't get it in enough time if I order it.
 
SmokingMeatForums.com is reader supported and as an Amazon Associate, we may earn commissions from qualifying purchases.

Latest posts

Hot Threads

Clicky