This week I feel like that character in Forrest Gump. Only instead of shrimp, it's turkey.  "Ya got yer smoked turkey, deep fried turkey, roasted turkey, turkey breasts, spatchcocked turkey, BBQ'd turkey, brined turkey, turkey legs, turkey neck..." You get the idea. Everybody has their favorite, "best" way to cook a turkey.

Honestly, the only bad turkey is a dried out turkey.  I've tried a number of different ways.  A couple of years ago I spatchcocked it. Fun to say, right?  It's where you basically split the whole bird in half, right down the middle and smoosh it as flat as possible on a baking sheet. The theory is that it cooks more evenly.  Mine turned out great, with just the wingtips being a little overcooked. Drawbacks: If you have a huge turkey, it won't fit very well in any standard sized roasting pan. Imagine an already giant bird, spread out to twice it's width.  It also can be somewhat intimidating to cut out the spine with meat scissors and then hack it in half and press it down to break the bones. It's like overly aggressive CPR. Don't believe the online videos. It's not quiet as easy as they make it look.

Deep fried turkey is still extremely popular and still starts a number of house fires across America every year. It's relatively simple to do with the right equipment. The bird cooks well and always comes out moist, because IT'S DEEP FRIED! Everything deep fried is delicious. We all know that.  Drawbacks: Besides the obvious fire danger, deep frying your masterpiece requires some initial expense, like buying the fryer.  And propane.  And a giant 5 gallon jug of peanut oil. That's like a hundo, for something you think you'll use all the time, but in reality you do it once or twice and then sell the fryer at your garage sale.

I don't have a smoker or a Traeger so I have yet to smoke a turkey. I'm jealous of my Facebook friends who are always posting pics of their smoked meats. I slow cooked a turkey once on the grill, and as far as I can remember it turned out just fine.  Pretty similar to roasting it in the oven, which is what I'm doing this year.  My only twist this time is that I'm going to brine that big, beautiful, Hutterite bird overnight in a secret solution.  It's gonna be good.

Next time,

Michael