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What did I do wrong with my turkey?

I cooked a turkey using the recipie in the BGE handbook. It was only a 10.5# bird. I estimated about 3 hours using the verticle roaster at 300 degrees. The breast was at 160 but the thighs were no more than 169-171. Kept cooking until 5 1/2 hours went by but thigh temp never got above 174. Ate the breasts next day, not bad, little dry. The rest was turned to soup. I thought the thighs need to get to 180 but it never happened. Please explain what went wrong. Thanks


  • Girth,
    first of all. .. .burn the bge handbook, its pretty useless. . ..[p]how did you cook yours? . ..indirect? . .vertical? ... direct? ...etc. ...[p]regardless of how you cook yours, one of the biggest tricks is how do you start with a whole piece of something that is all one temp, and get two different parts of finished at different temps (i.e., the breast done at 160 and the thighs/legs at 180). . .best trick i ever learned is to take a 1 gallon zip lock bag full of ice cubes and lay it over the breasts for 20 minutes just prior to cooking. ..this lowers the breast temps sufficiently to allow the thighs to finish at 180 while the breasts finish around 160. .. also, sometimes you have to trust something other than a thermometer. ...if a deep poke with skewer into the breast or into the thigh lets clear juices run forth, and the drumstick is rotating freeling on its joint with the thigh. ..i don't care what your thermometers say, its done. ...[p]here is a link to how i do them. . ..hope it helps. .

  • tach18ktach18k Posts: 1,607
    I would guess the temp was off. 300 dome could be as low as 250 at the grate. You should have been closer to 350 dome temp. I think its like 20 min per pound. So a 10.5 a little over 3 hours or so. Try it again. Also try to test the therometer, place it in boiling water and reset it to 212 so you know its about as accurate as possible, (diffferent altitudes do make a difference with this but I'm not even starting on that deal!)

  • girth,[p]i should read more carefully. ..i see you did it verticle. . .was it direct or indirect? ...either way,my initial advice holds .. ..[p]also, another way to do them that i've seen with great success is a julia child method, where you separate the legs from the breasts prior to cooking...put the legs in to roast for a while, then put the breasts in later so that everything gets done at the same time. ...[p]HTH. .
  • I had the verticle roaster in a aluminum pan so no direct heat. I did poke with the therometer when checking, juicies seemed clear but temp was not good. Will the temp rise while resting? If so would low 170's be ok?
  • tach18k,
    Hey, the Mothership has even got that covered![p]Kelly

    [ul][li]Boiling Point of Water[/ul]
  • Girth,[p]I could be completely wrong, but I don't consider an aluminum pan enough of a heat deflector. I think you should have used a placesetter.
    Just my 4 cents (inflation to make up for gas prices)[p]Mike

  • Mad Max's recipie looks mighty good. What kind of white wine works best with turkey?
  • Girth,
    almost any good wine will do. ..last one i did it was a chardonay....

  • Girth wrote:
    Mad Max's recipie looks mighty good. What kind of white wine works best with turkey?

    I always go with Pinot Noir with Thanksgiving turkey. Try some Schug or David Bruce. Great wines, not too expensive.
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