Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Smoked Turkey, its a wonderful thing.......

Papa's Smoked Turkey
Smoked turkey is such a wonderful treat I ponder why I don't smoke one more often. I remember watching in awe when I was a child my grandfather smoking turkey's on a spit low and slow. With that bird spinning away slowly on the spit and the smell of the bird smoking was amazing and watching him baste it with his secret blend of ingredients, well I was fascinated. The anticipation of the turkey coming off the spit was agonizing and all of the family would want to reach in and snag a little crispy piece of the turkey every time he would lift the lid to mop it! His method of cooking his turkey was he used indirect heat and on a spit. He would put a drip pan underneath the turkey and build the fire around the bird. He would keep his fire around 250 degrees and baste the turkey every thirty minutes or so. The key to all this was what he used for smoke and the ingredients he used to mop the bird to give it the nice crust and flavor I remember. I can't give you the exact recipe for the turkey or my family would disown me but i will give you one that is very, very good and your family will love it! One secret I will give you is that he would only smoke his turkey's over hickory nuts. That's right I said hickory huts! It is what he used and the flavor it imparts is not the same as the hickory wood, the nuts are a sweeter smoke and really amazing. So this fall I would suggest that when the hickory nuts start dropping getting a sack and going nut hunting. Not only is it a nice way to spend the day in the woods but will bring you much enjoyment when using those gems in your smoker. The mop I am giving you is easy and will give your bird a wonderful flavor and skin is fantastically delicious. In a saucepan add one cup each of orange juice, lemon juice, lime juice, 1 tbsp chili powder, 1 tbsp of paprika, 1 tbsp salt, 1 tbsp black pepper and a 1/4 cup of olive oil. Bring to a simmer and remove from heat and use it to baste your turkey with about every half hour.  Enjoy.......

Note: if you don't have a spit you can use a Weber and place your bird in the center under a drip pan and build you fire around the pan, the skin won't be as crispy but still a great turkey. That's the way I did this one after I burnt up the motor to my spit.   :-( 
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