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Yesterday's Turkey

After frying turkeys for the last 5 or 6 years I decided to do yesterday's Thanksgiving turkey on my LBGE. I used the Mad Max method as a guide, and, it turned out as good as any fried turkey I've ever done.

I started with a 20lb. bird and brined it overnight on Sunday. A couple of hours before I planned to put it on the egg I took the turkey out of the brine, rinsed and dried it and injected with a basic herb based injection. Following the Mad Max instructions I iced the breasts for about 1/2 an hour before putting the bird on the egg. As you can see from the first picture, I had a little trouble spreading the butter over the bird so most of it just ended up being clumped on top. The butter seemed to want to just slip over the skin rather than allow itself to be evenly spread.

I cooked at around 350* until the IT on the breast was at 160* and the thighs was 180*. The turkey rested under a foil tent for about 1/2 an hour before it was served. During that time I made my gravy; again, according to the Mad Max instructions (no gravy pics). The gravy (minus the giblets) was outstanding.

I know that spatchcock would have been an option but, Mrs. TOTN wanted a "traditional" looking turkey for presentation purposes.

All, in all, here is what I concluded in terms of frying vs. egging:

1. Frying is a lot faster and less labor intensive (not that there is that much labor involved either way)
2. Frying seems to be a little more accurate in terms of cooking temp/time. I saw roasting time estimates (mostly based on cooking at 325*) anywhere for 4- 4 1/2 hours up to 7 or 8 hours for a 20 lb. bird. I cooked at 350* to make sure mine was done in time.
3. Roasting provides wonderful drippings for making gravy; something that frying does not do.
4. I was able to do a larger bird on my egg as opposed to my fryer; which only accommodates up to a 14 lb. bird.
5. Juiciness and flavor are excellent both ways. I only had 3 or 4 small apple wood chunks in my fire so the bird was not heavy on the smoke flavor.

Here's the turkey ready to go on the egg:

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The turkey on the egg. I had to take the dome thermometer out as the bird sat high up in the dome:


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2 hours in. Could not figure out why the left side was darker than the right but I tented the whole bird with foil to prevent too much browing.


image

Ready to come off the egg:


image
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Well, "spa-Peggy" is kind of like spaghetti. I'm not sure what Peggy does different, if anything. But it's the one dish she's kind of made her own.
____________________
Aurora, Ontario, Canada
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Comments

  • EggcelsiorEggcelsior Posts: 10,215
    Looks fantastic. I too prefer the traditional approach as spatchcock is relatively ugly and my family carves tableside.
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  • MickeyMickey Posts: 15,797
    What time is dinner?
    Salado TX Egg Family: 2 Large and a very well used Mini, just added a Mini Max +++ 5th Salado EggFest is March 14, 2015 http://saladoeggheadgathering.blogspot.com

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  • Mickey said:
    What time is dinner?
    Last night at 6:30
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    Well, "spa-Peggy" is kind of like spaghetti. I'm not sure what Peggy does different, if anything. But it's the one dish she's kind of made her own.
    ____________________
    Aurora, Ontario, Canada
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  • EggNorthEggNorth Posts: 483
    That looks awesome.
    Cambridge, Ontario - Canada
    LBGE (2010)
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  • BigWaderBigWader Posts: 572
    @TexanoftheNorth That looks great.  I did the Mad Max for Christmas last year and used the whole bottle of wine between the bird and gravy.  I don't know if it was wine used but I found it too strong in the gravy and made a note to dial way back when I do it again.  Was really happy with the results too though.

     

    Large BGE

     

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  • Looks great!  I did the Mad Max method for Thanksgiving last year and it turned out great.  I have since spatchcocked  turkey and I really like that method.  I'm not sure which way we'll go this year.   

    ........................................................................................

    Flint, Michigan.  Named the most dangerous city in America by the F.B.I. three years running.

    We invented the U.A.W. and carjacking!

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  • GrannyX4GrannyX4 Posts: 1,413
    Looks great!  I did the Mad Max method for Thanksgiving last year and it turned out great.  I have since spatchcocked  turkey and I really like that method.  I'm not sure which way we'll go this year.   

    Do one of each. That's what we do. ;;)
    Every day is a bonus day and every meal is a banquet in Winter Springs, Fl !
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  • calikingcaliking Posts: 6,419
    Nice! I smoked a turkey last Thanksgiving (pre-BGE era) and it was phenomenal. Hoping to do one on the egg for xmas this year.

    #1 LBGE December 2012 • #2 SBGE February  2013 • #3 Mini May 2013
    A happy BGE family in Houston, TX.
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  • SkiddymarkerSkiddymarker Posts: 6,286
    Great looking cook. After the bird was iced, I melted the butter in the nuke and brushed it on - it solidified like a suit of armour and the coverage was very even. 
    Anything special in the "stuffing" or just the suggested Mad Max? 
    Delta B.C. - Vee-Gan: old Indian word for poor hunter. 
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  • @BigWader, you're right about the wine. I'll probably cut back next time too.

    @Skiddymarker, good idea on melting the butter. I did the "stuffing" as per the Mad Max instructions.

    Oh, I forgot to mention in my OP that I did not baste the turkey at all. The only time I opened the egg was at the 2 hr. mark to get a picture and again when I reached my ITs. I don't know how basting would have made this bird any better but, given that I had injected it, I figured it wasn't worth the trouble,
    ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Well, "spa-Peggy" is kind of like spaghetti. I'm not sure what Peggy does different, if anything. But it's the one dish she's kind of made her own.
    ____________________
    Aurora, Ontario, Canada
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  • SkiddymarkerSkiddymarker Posts: 6,286
    @BigWader - regarding the wine, I use the full bottle with up to a 12 pound bird. Best to use a cheap, sweeter wine IMHO. A bottle of two buck chuck as Dad used to call it, something on a sweetness scale of 2 works the best for me. We've settled on a California white Zinfandel, no oak or other overtones. Also, when making the gravy, reduction of up to 1/3 rd seems to be the best. 
    Great method for turkey.
    Delta B.C. - Vee-Gan: old Indian word for poor hunter. 
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  • How long did the bird take?
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  • @BulldogNation, my took just about 5 1/2 hours at a grid cook temp of 350*.
    ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Well, "spa-Peggy" is kind of like spaghetti. I'm not sure what Peggy does different, if anything. But it's the one dish she's kind of made her own.
    ____________________
    Aurora, Ontario, Canada
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  • CanuggheadCanugghead Posts: 4,382
    edited October 2013
    @TexanOfTheNorth, great looking bird and great analysis John. Mad Max turkey is our favourite go-to way. I've yet to try brining. The gravy is the bomb, just make sure to burn off the alcohol and go easy on the liver. I remember first time I did it few years ago Max had his turkey hotline open (even for Canuck TG) and I had to make a distress call! To gain headroom for the bird, I omit the grid and separate the pan from the p/s with plumbing copper tees/elbows.
    Vaughan, ON
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  • Little StevenLittle Steven Posts: 26,941
    I like to aim the legs at the back of the egg and change the angle through the cook. Nice looking bird. I know....back to the chores

    Steve 

    Caledon, ON

     

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  • Little StevenLittle Steven Posts: 26,941
    @TexanOfTheNorth, great looking bird and great analysis John. Mad Max turkey is our favourite go-to way. I've yet to try brining. The gravy is the bomb, just make sure to burn off the alcohol and go easy on the liver. I remember first time I did it few years ago Max had his turkey hotline open (even for Canuck TG) and I had to make a distress call! To gain headroom for the bird, I omit the grid and separate the pan from the p/s with plumbing copper tees/elbows.
    Max is a stinkin' Caps fan

    Steve 

    Caledon, ON

     

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  • CanuggheadCanugghead Posts: 4,382
    edited October 2013
    ...back to the chores
    fertilising the grass? boring :D
    Vaughan, ON
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  • Little StevenLittle Steven Posts: 26,941
    Avoiding it like the plague buddy. Have to do the pool too. Did manage to get the garbage out and adjust the feet on the washing machine to stop the rattling. I'm thinking it's Miller time.

    Steve 

    Caledon, ON

     

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  • I'm thinking it's Miller time.

    Whoa!! I didn't see that coming! Heh, heh, heh!

    ........................................................................................

    Flint, Michigan.  Named the most dangerous city in America by the F.B.I. three years running.

    We invented the U.A.W. and carjacking!

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  • Little StevenLittle Steven Posts: 26,941
    Still holding off. They are coming with Paula's new medication to show us how to use it. Prolly be bad form to be all bagged up eh?

    Steve 

    Caledon, ON

     

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  • You're a good man to hold off, but I get the feeling they better arrive sooner than later. :D

    ........................................................................................

    Flint, Michigan.  Named the most dangerous city in America by the F.B.I. three years running.

    We invented the U.A.W. and carjacking!

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  • Sounds like he still has to get over to Costco as well!
    ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Well, "spa-Peggy" is kind of like spaghetti. I'm not sure what Peggy does different, if anything. But it's the one dish she's kind of made her own.
    ____________________
    Aurora, Ontario, Canada
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  • you killed it that Bird looks eatable  great cook !!
    2 Large Eggs and a Mini 2 Pit Bulls and a Pork shoulder or butt nearby and 100% SICILIAN
    Long Island N.Y.
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  • Little StevenLittle Steven Posts: 26,941
    How many beers can I have and still be able to learn how to give my sister injections? They are sub-cutaneous after all...can't be all that hard.

    Steve 

    Caledon, ON

     

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  • Depth perception. It's all about depth perception.

    ........................................................................................

    Flint, Michigan.  Named the most dangerous city in America by the F.B.I. three years running.

    We invented the U.A.W. and carjacking!

    ·
  • Little StevenLittle Steven Posts: 26,941
    Norma is a nurse. Going to the beer fridge now.

    Steve 

    Caledon, ON

     

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