4lb 4oz Smoked Turkey Breast (Crown)
Having this on a Tuesday evening, so had to map out the work-back plan to get everything sorted...
Take the bird out of the freezer.
While keeping the skin still attached to the bird, use your fingers by sliding them under the skin, and create a separation between the skin and the flesh.
Slice an onion in half (mine was a Bermuda onion from Papa’s garden).
Season the inside of the cavity with thyme, salt & pepper and stick both halves of the onion in the cavity.
Season the turkey meat under the skin with your spice rub (salt, pepper, onion powder, garlic powder, dried oregano and some fresh oregano). Stick slices of bacon and cold butter under the skin too. Leave the turkey in the fridge overnight.
I took the turkey out nice and early (at least an hour before it went in the smoker) to come to room temperature. I brushed vegetable oil all over the skin and sprinkled a little kosher salt.
2:15pm: I lit the fire (small minion) ½ full.
Applewood (not too much - and I tried to not block the minion action). This took about 15 mins to get to a nice gray ash.
No water in the foil covered water bowl.
2:30pm: Hot coals poured on and I put the lid on the smoker.
(I put some bacon and a couple of jalapeños on the bottom grill).
The aim was to try and get it hot. I wanted to keep it over 275° and up to 325°. The intent was to not let it drop below 250°. I kept all the vents open to let it run hot.
It’s taking a little longer than I expected to get to heat! 2:45pm lid temp says 210°.
3:00pm: When the smoke blew clear, I stuck the turkey on the top grill.
I added a couple of applewood chips through the door after I put the turkey on (just for a little extra smoke kick).
Meat temp was 70° and rose to 80° within the first 10 mins. Grill temp made it up to about 260° but never made it to 275° let alone 300°+.
Note for next time: I simply think I didn’t add enough hot coals (from the chimney) to really get the heat up. I only heated about 17 briquettes and I should have done about 25 and I should have had them white hot before I added.
Now leave turkey the hell alone for about three and a half to four hours. You are looking for an internal temp of about 160° for the turkey.
3:30pm: I took the bacon off. Nice and smokey and crispy. Sorry no pictures, we ate it!
I left the jalapeños for a bit longer.
Meat temp now 118°. Smoker lid temp 255°.
Note: My internal probe broke so I had to move to the thermometer I got from Professional Secrets, This one is much more pinpoint for specific places in the meat.
4:30pm: I checked the jalapeños (looking good).
Bird temp 145°. Lid temp 255°.
6:00pm: I took the turkey off the smoker and let it rest (uncovered) for about half an hour.
Meat temp was 163°. Lid was still 250°.
I prepped the sides (all from Papa’s garden).
Green beans. Kale. Papa’s carrots.
I made some turkey gravy.
6:30pm: Slice it up baby, it’s dinner time.