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I thought I would show you my turkey

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Posted by Ray Basso on November 28, 2013 at 21:10:49:

The smoked turkey turned out a lot better than the picture of it did. But, I still wanted to show it to you and tell you what I thought I did right and what I did wrong.

We brined it according to the directions of the video below. I had always thought that soaking a turkey overnight it a brine solutions would possibly produce better results than injecting a bird. But, I never had a suitable container for bird and brine that I could keep refrigerated. The video suggested that we should buy a large construction water cooler and so I gave it a try. I bought the jug for $28 and justified the cost in the fact that I could use it over and over again.

So we had purchased two turkeys about 12 lbs each and I calculated that I could get both birds, the brine and the ice it the cooler and that proved to be correct. I then put the whole thing out on the deck and it stayed there for about 10 hours. Last night the outside temperature was around 29 degrees. I check the brine temperature a couple of times during the night and the brine temperature was always 27 degrees. After the ten hour I brought it back inside and put it in the kitchen and the brine temperature remained about 27 degrees for another four hours.  After I brought it inside we did add a little more ice but inside or out it still remained 27 degrees.

Then I put one of the birds in the WSM and filled the ring with unlit charcoal and put on top of that a a bunch of lit charcoal. I did not put water in the water pan I just lined it with foil. I opened all the vents and let rip. I also had a foil deflector around the turkey as in the video. I put in several small chunks of pecan wood because I discovered I only had pecan and apple. The temperature went up to about 340 degrees and stayed there during the whole cook which was about 2.5 hours. The outside temperature was around 38 degrees all the time I was cooking it the outside temperature remained around 38 degrees.

Towards the end of the cook I checked and the the color of the bird was beautiful then I decided I would throw in some apple wood and that was a mistake because the skin got quite a bit darker real fast. I also should have tucked the wings under but I forgot to do that. I pulled it off when the internal temperature of the breast was 160 and the drumstick/thigh was 177.

The skin was tight on the bird like a Peking duck but the skin was inedible as far as I was concerned. But the turkey meat was very good. Everyone thought the oven bird and the smoker bird was real good and nobody died or got sick so that is always a plus. The brine produced two tasty birds and both were very juicy.

Ray Basso

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