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Turkey recipes

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by Bess of the Piedmont on November 10, 2003 08:21 PM
My husband, Ken of the Piedmont, LOVES making this BBQed turkey for Thanksgiving (and whenever he can get away with it!). It's fun and makes the house smell festive. I like to help him with it, even though I'm a vegetarian.


2 quarts apple juice
1 pound brown sugar
1 cup kosher salt
3 oranges, quartered
4 ounces fresh ginger, thinly sliced
15 whole cloves
6 bay leaves
6 large garlic cloves, crushed

5 gallon bucket, or container big enough to contain turkey and brine.

1 turkey, 12-14 pounds
(We've found that the "boneless" kind fits neatly into the grill. Thaw first, if frozen)

Vegetable oil for basting

Cotton string for trussing turkey, if using whole bird
Roasting rack
Heavy gage foil pan
Hickory chips, soaked in water.
Aluminum foil
Meat thermometer

Prepare the brine one day before cooking, because the turkey will need to marinate in it for 24 hours.
In a large saucepan over high heat, bring the apple juice, brown sugar and salt to a boil, stirring to dissolve the sugar and salt. Cook for 1 minute, remove from heat and skim off the foam. Cool to room temperature.

In a five gallon bucket, combine 3 quarts of water, oranges, cloves, garlic, ginger, bay leaves. Add the cooled apple juice mixture to this.

Remove the fat, neck and giblets. Rinse the turkey inside and out, drain, and put into the brine mixture. You may have to put something heavy on top to keep it submerged. Refridgerate for 24 hours. (A cold, unheated porch works well if you're low on space in the fridge, but keep the animals away!)

Set up grill for indirect heating: Charcoal briquets should be placed on either side of center, but not diectly under where the turkey will sit. Likewise if you're using gas burners- light only the ones on each side of the meat. Once the lid is down, the heat will circulate around the food and cook it slowly and evenly. Follow your grill's directions about adding the hickory chips,

Remove turkey from brine after 24 hours and pat dry with paper towels. Tie legs together with cotton string. Brush with vegetable oil and place on a roasting rack set inside a heavy gauge foil pan. Cook indirectly over medium heat. Wrap wings in foil after about 40 minutes to keep from over-browning them. Brush turkey again with oil. After about an hour, or after the breasts are golden brown, cover the turkey with aluminum foil to prevent further browning of the skin. It is done when the juices run clear, the internal temperature of the thickest part of the thigh is about 180 degrees F and the internal breat temperature reaches about 165 degrees F. ( 12-14 minutes per pound.)

After cooking, let it rest on a cutting board under loose foil for 20 minutes before carving. Pan drippings may be used for gravy.

This makes a very juicy, festive main dish for your Thanksgiving or Yuletide table.

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