Are you ready to eat some amazing turkey? Ready to show your family how this feast is supposed to be? These turkey tips will help make you the family legend.
BRINE A BETTER BIRD
- Brine Tools Needed
- Large Work Area
- Clean Bird, Inside and Out
- 5 Gallon Ace Hardware Bucket and lid that are large enough to hold the bird
- Brine Bag
- Clean Counters
- Brine Mix – Chef’s, Bayou or Italian Brine and the corresponding rub
- Traeger Brine is in there Turkey Pellet Bag
- Italian Brine and Cluck
- Bayou Brine and Bayou Dust
- Space in the fridge or in a cooler
- Cover for the bucket
- Brine Process (if using breast skip to step 6)
- Select the perfect bird, know its weight.
- Select the brine to fit your taste. Sweet, savory, garlic, Italian, etc.
- Defrost the Turkey under refrigeration then remove the bird from the bag.
- Remove any gift packages in the bird. Check the cavity and neck area
- Rinse the bird inside and out.
- Place the bird into the brine bucket
- Follow the directions on the Brine package and add your brine to 2 quarts of water in a pan on the stove.
- Heat on HIGH for 5 minutes to dissolve the sugar and salt.
- Cool the Brine mixture, add ICE water and mix well
- Add Brine bag to bucket if desired
- Place the water into the bucket. BE SURE TO COVER THE BIRD WITH BRINE.
- Place in the fridge, fridge not big enough? Use a cooler large enough to fit the bucket and ice around the sides and over the top.
- Brine for about 45 minutes per pound. Be sure not to over brine. If you desire a stronger flavor, use a stronger brine solution for the same amount of time. Example: 1.5 bags of brine for 45 minutes per pound
- Remove from the brine solution, NO NEED TO RINSE.
- Proceed to cook or smoke as you normally do. See below for cooking tips.
TURKEY ON YOUR GRILL OR IN YOUR SMOKER
- We suggest covering your turkey during roasting to keep moisture in, then uncovering during the last hour of roasting to cook the skin and give it that golden finish. Rest the bird UNCOVERED.
- To bacon wrap or not to bacon wrap? Always a great flavor, but be careful with brines as they added. salt from the bacon may cause a saltier-than-desired turkey.
- Turkey Breast ONLY COOKING – 350 Degrees for 20 minutes, turn down to 275 until done.
- 4 – 6 Pounds 2 Hours
- 6 – 8 Pounds 3 Hours
- Allow the turkey to rest for about 15 minutes prior to carving to allow the juices to settle.
- Approx Traeger Cooking times per pound: 15 mins per pound, set at 325 degree
- Save those pan drippings, they make the best gravy.
TURKEY COOKING PERFECTION
The National Turkey Federation also offers these safety recommendations:
- Do not roast the turkey in an oven temperature lower than 325° F. Poultry should be roasted at a Minimum of 325° F. or higher to avoid potential food safety problems.
- Do not roast the turkey in a brown paper grocery bag. Present-day grocery bags may be made of recycled materials and are not considered safe for food preparation.
- Do use a meat thermometer (available at most grocery stores and kitchen shops) to determine the correct degree of doneness. Turkey is done when the meat in the thigh reaches 180°F or (meat in the breast in finished at 170°F).
That said, here is an approximate turkey roasting timetable
|Unstuffed Turkey||Stuffed Turkey|
|8 to 12 pounds — 2 3/4 to 3 hours
12 to 14 pounds — 3 to 3 3/4 hours
14 to 18 pounds — 3 3/4 to 4 1/4 hours
18 to 20 pounds — 4 1/4 to 4 1/2 hours
20 to 24 pounds — 4 1/2 to 5 hours
|8 to 12 pounds — 3 to 3 1/2 hours
12 to 14 pounds — 3 1/2 to 4 hours
14 to 18 pounds — 4 to 4 1/4 hours
18 to 20 pounds — 4 1/4 to 4 3/4 hours
20 to 24 pounds — 4 3/4 to 5 1/4 hours
Source: tips.acehardware.com ~ Image: