If you are looking for a show stopper try Smoked Turkey for Thanksgiving. Even if your family has never tried smoked turkey, you will have converts before the night is through. You will actually have converts while you are carving the turkey. You will probably need to wield your carving knife to keep them away from the smoked turkey until you are ready to serve it. Cooking a turkey is not that hard but you know getting it just right, perfectly moist is tricky. Smoking your turkey is almost foolproof. The flavor goes without saying but the cooking process makes for an evenly cooked turkey.
One of the debates is whether to brine or not to brine. There are many types of BRINE but the most basic is salt added to water. A brine is believed to help keep the turkey moist. I generally brine my turkeys. Take a big container and fill is with water, salt and sugar. Next, take your turkey and drop it into the brine and put in the fridge over night. Before cooking, remove it from the brine and wash off the salt. Dry off the turkey and add your spices to the skin of the turkey. Prepare your smoker and I favor using a combination of hickory and cherry woods.
My love of smoked turkey begins with my Thanksgiving experience. For 30 years, I have been going home to wife’s house and spending most of a week with her family. The whole family is spread across the U.S. Thanksgiving is the holiday that the whole family comes home for. We have more than 20 people staying in one house and we have more than 50 people for our Thanksgiving dinner. We make 3 – 20+ pound turkeys. Two are now smoked turkeys. This puts a lot of pressure on me. What if they are no good. One year, the bbq’s drain got clogged and we has a grease fire. We were able to save the turkeys and no damage to the house. Let me tell you that was too close for comfort.
The turkey in the brine.
The brined turkey added to the Green Egg.
The turkey at the end of the smoking process.
The Smoked Turkey for Thanksgiving prep post plated.
- 12 - 14 pound turkey
- 3 tablespoons seasoned salt
- 1 cup salt
- 1/4 cup sugar
- As much water as you need to cover the turkey
- Combine all the brine ingredients.
- Dry off turkey and submerge in brine.
- Store in fridge overnight.
- Remove turkey from brine and rinse off excess salt.
- Dry the turkey with paper towels.
- Season the turkey generously.
- Prepare your smoker - (I used mesquite)
- Cook the turkey at 350 degrees for approximately 3 hours
- Use an internal thermometer to get perfect signal for when your turkey is done.