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Mesquite Smoked Whole Turkey

Cowboy Cooking Recipes from AlansKitchen.comIngredients

Directions

  1. First, remove the giblet packages from the turkey.  
  2. Rinse the turkey and pat dry.  
  3. Sprinkle the salt and pepper, inside and out.  
  4. While you get the fire going, let the turkey rest at room temperature.
  5. Use a kettle grill with a lid and prepare a small charcoal fire.  
  6. You need about 30 briquettes.  
  7. After the coals are hot, move to one side of the grill.  
  8. Fill a drip pan up with water (about 1/3rd) and place next to the coals.  
  9. Sprinkle a handful of presoaked mesquite wood chips over the coals.
  10. Place the turkey on the well-oiled grid. 
  11. You want the turkey directly over the drip pan.  
  12. Cover the grill.  
  13. Open the vents directly under the fire and above the turkey to make possible an even flow of smoke.
  14. Every 40 to 45 minutes open the grill and turn the turkey around or from side to side.  
  15. Then add 6 coals and another handful of presoaked mesquite chips to the fire.  
  16. You will do this about 5 or 6 times during the cooking.  
  17. Except for turning the turkey and add coals and mesquite, keep the grill lid closed. 
  18. Continue to cook the turkey in this fashion until the pop-up thermometer has sprung or a thermometer insert in the thigh reads 180 - degrees F.
  19. When done, the skin will look quite brown, but the inside meat will be moist and juicy.  
  20. Remove the turkey from the grill and let it rest at least for 15 minutes before carving.
  21. The 12-pound turkey takes about 4 to 4 1/2 hours to cook.  
  22. Reminder: cooking time depends on the heat, the air temperate, the actual size of the turkey, and its distance from the fire.

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