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Thanksgiving After-Action Review...

jrich Posts: 17
Hi folks, I'm new to both the big green egg and this wonderful forum! As a little background, I just got my large BGE up and going a few months ago with delicious results on ribs and butts. I then tried my hand on a turkey. I did a trial run with a 12 pound turkey a few weeks before Thanksgiving. I did the Alton Brown/Good Eats brine recipe, spatchcocked the bird, and smoked with a single chunk of cherry wood. 350 F, cooked in a little over 90 mins until breast meat was 165 F. Fabulous flavor, best turkey I've had to date. So I tried it a second time on thanksgiving, same setup, except a 20 pound bird (maybe this was my problem?) Cooked it until the breast registered 165, and drumstick was180 (this is what I had read was safe temps etc.) Around 2 1/2 to 3 hours. After the bird rested, upon cutting him up, there were multiple areas scattered around the breast meat and dark meat that where completely not cooked (that jelly consistency), while others where fine. Essentially inedible, very disappointing. (Luckily we had two other turkeys, and plenty of meat, but my showcase smoked bird flopped.) Any pointers or suggestions? Was the bird too big for a large BGE? Any advice would be appreciated, All the best... -Seoul Big Green Egger


  • Eggcelsior
    Eggcelsior Posts: 14,414
    Was your turkey totally defrosted? That's the only that I can think of since both white and dark meat had the same issues. Perhaps there were cold spots that hadn't come up to temp on account of this. I haven't spatchcocked a turkey, so I assume that's why your cooking times blew past the 12min/lb I typically get with traditional turkey. 
  • jrich
    jrich Posts: 17
    It was totally defrosted. Maybe part of the meat re-froze during the overnight brining (I placed it outside in heavily-iced brine solution.) Oh well, it's a conundrum I suppose. I'm going to try it again and report back...
  • Mickey
    Mickey Posts: 19,668
    edited January 2013
    I always find the small birds (11.5/13) and if need more meat just do two. You can stack, but I just cook twice as only takes 90 mins when spatchcocked at 400. And you get the extra wings and legs.
    Salado TX & 30A  FL: Egg Family: 3 Large and a very well used Mini, added a Mini Max when they came out (I'm good for now). Plus a couple Pit Boss Pellet Smokers.