Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Cooking turkey

As I've mentioned before, my mesquite grilled turkeys are the best in the world. No one on this earth can cook a turkey better than I can. Still it's interesting how many variations on turkey cooking there are.

When I was young, our family often went to our grantmother's house in Arkansas. Gradma was a really sweet lady, but her turkey's were just dreadful. She always bought turkeys that were too big. They dried out and got tough long before they were done. I hated turkey when I was young because I'd never had one cooked well.

If we weren't going to Arkansas, then my mom would cook one. It would be smaller, but my mom made two mistakes with them. She cooked them at too high a heat and the meat got tough. And, she always put stuffing inside them. This makes the cooking time increase. And the product is crap. My mom really just wanted stuffing and couldn't care less about the actual turkey. It showed.

At some point, after the people at General Foods came up with Stove Top stuffing, I was able to get my mom to try cooking one without stuffing inside. It was a huge improvement. It cooked much faster and better.

Then, God told me to go forth into the world and cook with mesquite charcoal. I started cooking nearly everything with mesquite charcoal. Ribs, steaks, ham and even the plain old hamburger. They were all wonderful--each superbly prepared and absolutely delicious. So, it was a natural progression, that I decided to cook a turkey. I'd never cooked anything so big before. I had to redsign how I laid out the charcoal. More attention was needed to banking the coals and keeping the fire even and hot. Then I lit the fire and soon placed the bird on top of the grill. Now that the stuffing was no longer an impediment, I hoped the turkey would cook thoroughly and not get burnt. Boy, was I on to something. The dog parked himself next to the grill and guarded it. The smell was the most intoxicating thing he'd ever inhaled. And, soon it was done. I carved it and served it to the family members present [and I gave the dog some too. He'd protected it with his life, afterall]. It was simply wonderful. It was better than any variation on turkey I'd ever tasted.

Since then, I've tried fried turkey, solar baked turkey, Chinese style turkey [turkeys are not native to China]. None of them, none of them, held a candle to my mesquite grilled turkey.

So, as you stuff your faces with turkey, just remember that your turkey is not nearly as well prepared as mine is. Have a nice day.

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