BBQ Turkey Hagerstown MD
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Turkey is the ultimate Thanksgiving food. No thanksgiving is complete without a turkey on the table. It’s definitely because of tradition (Americans have been doing it for years, after all), but it’s not as if anyone is complaining. Turkey has got to be one of the best bird dishes around. It beats the commonness of chicken and is more luscious than ducks. And would you even consider eating exotic birds such as pigeon (pigeons are actually used for delicacies in countries such as China). In any case, if there’s one thing you can complain about being served turkey as Thanksgiving food, it’s the way it has been served over the years.
Turkey is often oven-cooked. And rightfully so; an oven baked chicken is by no means the same as an oven baked turkey. But regardless how delicious it is, turkey cooked the same way for years can be quite tiring. Still, many people prepare turkey the same way because they thought they couldn’t prepare it any other way.
But this is not true. Turkey is a versatile meat and can be enjoyed in many ways. One way to serve this amazing Thanksgiving food? Two words: turkey BBQ.
But why would anyone barbeque turkey even using the oven has been tried and tested—and loved—for years on end?
Well, for one, it’s probably about time that you try a different Thanksgiving food on your table. And turkey BBQ is not even different; it’s merely prepared in a different manner. Deep inside, it’s the same turkey you know and love. A new dish can really invigorate your Thanksgiving feast. Of course, some might want to serve the traditional turkey too, especially if there are guests involved. Some guests may not feel so welcoming and would look for the familiar comforts of turkey BBQ.
But turkey BBQ can be done for practicality’s sake too. When you barbeque turkey, you’re not exactly saving in preparation time (turkey BBQ requires the same thorough cooking). However, you may consider turkey grilling if your oven is in full capacity or you do not have an oven (or if yours is out of commission at the moment). Turkey grilling is a great alternative to oven cooking a turkey. It may not mean you’re going spend less time on cooking it, but at least you can use your oven for other things.
So how do you prepare a turkey for grilling?
Basically, you will have to undergo the same procedure. You need to thaw the turkey and remove giblets and other necessary parts. Turkey thawing actually takes several days. Professional cooks suggest you allow the turkey to thaw for six hours for every pound of the turkey. After thawing, make sure it is dried properly and thoroughly. When trimming the turkey, cut the wishbone; this allows for a much easier trimming and carving.
Before you barbeque the turkey, you need to season it, naturally. How is this done? For one, rinse it in cold water. After you dry it inside and out, season it. Before the actual seasoning, you may want to loosen the skin first. Do this by fitting your hand under its skin, working around it until the breast skin has been loosened. This is the only time you should season it, as this process allows you to do it properly. After which, tuck the turkey legs underneath the neck for easy trussing. Even when turkey grilling, this is important: if you don’t truss the turkey, it may look rather unattractive when cooked.
What about the stuffing? This should be done in the oven. Remember that this is an entirely different process.
So now you grill the turkey. Here, you need to make sure that you’re using indirect heat. When using a gas grill, you only need one side to cook the turkey. After one side is done, you turn the turkey to cook the other side. When using a charcoal grill, place the charcoal around the turkey; not directly underneath it. If you do not do this, your barbeque turkey will end up being undercooked, if not completely uncooked!
In any case, with a gas grill, make sure it is preheat at 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
Cook one side of the turkey first, with the thighs and wings facing down. The legs should be pointed at the grill’s back. This is the first stage of turkey grilling and should be done for 48 minutes. After this, turn the turkey over so the bird’s legs will now face the front of the grill. Do this for 48 minutes too. However, do try to monitor the turkey grilling; try to make sure the gas grill doesn’t get too hot. If you’re using a charcoal grill, try to measure the turkey’s temperature (because how can you measure the heat emitted by a charcoal grill)? Needless to say, using a gas grill will be less work, but it’s not entirely impossible to use a charcoal one.
After this, turn the turkey so its breast would be facing up, with the legs facing the grill’s back. At 350 degrees Fahrenheit, cook the turkey this way for 24 minutes (half the time of the first two procedures). After the 24 minutes, rotate the bird and grill it for 24 minutes again. By this time, the breast of the turkey should be at around 165 degrees Fahrenheit. If the meat reaches this temperature before the 24 minutes, consider it cooked. However, it is more likely that you will exceed the 24 minutes before the turkey grilling is completed.
During the fourth and last grilling, coat the turkey with cranberry glaze for the amazing color. However, be careful: if you don’t keep a close eye after the coating, the glaze may be burned, giving your beloved BBQ turkey a burnt color.
This process of turkey grilling might be more troublesome than your usual procedures. However, turkey grilling is worth all the effort. It is different and delicious, a perfect Thanksgiving food for an amazing Thanksgiving feast!