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Hi all.  I've been away from smoking for 5 years!  I have a cookshack and kept a detailed log of smoking while I was actively smoking meats.  However, I am now going to resume smoking and plan on smoking a turkey this week.  I have smoked many turkeys but reviewing my smoking journal, I left out one important detail which for the life of me, I can't remember what I did.  So, here it is  Do I place the turkey directly on the rack in the smoker, or do I set it on a cookie sheet?  I ask because I smoke for about an hour and a half, then I place cheesecloth soaked in butter and seasonings on the bird.  I can recall doing that in the kitchen which means I removed the bird from the rack.  So, I either start with the bird on a cookie sheet, or slide it off the rack onto a cookie sheet.  Man, I love getting older!

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I can't answer your question, but I have a request:  When you get it sorted out, could you please post your recipe/procedure? I've never done a turkey, but would really like to on my Amerique. Thanks in advance!

PS: Just based on your post, it makes more sense to me to move it to a pan before the messy butter process. Give the bird a chance to drip before that. Just my $.02.

Last edited by jay1924
@jay1924 posted:

I can't answer your question, but I have a request:  When you get it sorted out, could you please post your recipe/procedure? I've never done a turkey, but would really like to on my Amerique. Thanks in advance!

PS: Just based on your post, it makes more sense to me to move it to a pan before the messy butter process. Give the bird a chance to drip before that. Just my $.02.

Jay, I'll give you my cook process/recipe.  Most of the recipe came from this site, under recipes or Turkey 101.  I generally cook around 12lb birds.  If I need more than that, I'll do two birds.  Say for Thanksgiving, I smoke one the day before and one the day of, generally starting the bird on Thanksgiving at around 0800.  It usually takes about 4-5 hours cook time depending on if I do it at 235 or 250 (I usually go at 250).  I measure the birds temperature in the breast and pull it out at 160 and let it rest for half an hour.  I have found that during the rest, the bird will make it to 165, the finishing temperature.

Recipe and process:

I mix butter and McCormicks Grill Mates Chicken rub.  Then, I slide my fingers under the skin and loosen it all around and stuff some of the mixture around under the skin everywhere.  I save some of the mixture for later to use on the cheese cloth and basting.  I quarter two apples and one onion and throw them in the cavity along with a couple of garlic cloves.  I then place the bird on the rack in the cooker and set the temp to 250.  After about an hour and half, I pull the bird out onto a cookie sheet and bring it in the house.  I place cheesecloth over the breast, wings and legs and pour some of the melted butter mixture over the cheese cloth again saving some some to baste later if needed.  I put the bird back in, baste if needed and pull it out at 160 degrees and let it rest half an hour before carving.  You will notice I do not brine my bird, I do use butterball turkeys which I believe are actually brined somewhat.  You can play around with the seasoning in the butter also.  Once in a while I toss in some ground oregano for fun!  Thats it.  Oh, I have an SM045 smoker.

Poultry rarely gets a crispy skin, thus I do not do poultry except on a grill.  However, what I have read here (on the older forum site), as well as other sites, is to place the bird under a broiler or on a hot grill after smoking to crisp up the skin.  Another option is to use a torch.  We have an Iwatani for use in the kitchen.  If I did smoked poultry I would go with the Searzall, which is more expensive but can handle large items.  Links are below.The reason is you need at least 325 degrees minimum for a crispy skin and that is for a long cook in an oven.  350 or higher is better and quicker. The CS 066 electric smoker maxes out at 300.  

https://www.amazon.com/SEARZAL...606104032&sr=8-3

https://www.amazon.com/Iwatani...06103546&sr=8-26

Last edited by oldsarge

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