Smoked Turkey Two Ways

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Smoked Turkey Two Ways


Ease of preparation rating: Medium

Yield: 6-8 people



For brining

12- 15-pound (5.45 kg-6.8 kg) turkey, spatchcocked

1.1/2 cups (350 ml) sea salt

4 garlic cloves, peeled

3 oranges, peeled, zested, and juiced

2 gallons (7.57 l) water

2 sprigs rosemary

2 sprigs thyme

6 bay leaves

2 tablespoons (30 ml) peppercorns


For Cajun spice seasoning

2 tablespoons (30 ml) cayenne

1 tablespoon (15 ml) mustard powder

2 teaspoon (10 ml) coriander

2 tablespoon (30 ml) chili powder

2 teaspoon (10 ml) thyme

1 tablespoon (15 ml) cumin

2 teaspoon (10 ml) ground black pepper


For herbes de Provence seasoning

3 tablespoons (45 ml) dried thyme

2 tablespoons (30 ml) dried savory

1 tablespoon (15 ml) dried rosemary

1 tablespoon (15 ml) dried marjoram

1 tablespoon (15 ml) dried lavender

2 tablespoons (30 ml) Vegetable oil , to rub on the turkey


For the gravy

Turkey bones, from spatchcocking

Turkey neck

1 carrot, peeled

2 spears celery

1 medium onion, halved

4 cups (950 ml) unsalted chicken stock

4 sprigs fresh thyme

2 sprigs fresh rosemary

2 bay leaves

2 tablespoons (30 ml) seed mustard

1 teaspoon (5 ml) juniper berries

½ cup (120 ml) butter

½ cup (120 ml) all-purpose flour

Salt and pepper to taste


Special equipment

4 cups (960 ml) Mesquite wood chips

Tinfoil for smoking pouch and tenting



For the brine

In a large pot combine sea salt, garlic, orange peels, juice of the oranges, water, rosemary, bay leaves, and peppercorns.

Bring mixture to a boil then set aside to cool.

Immerse turkey in the chilled brine mixture and marinate for 24 hours in a fridge.

Remove turkey from brine, pat dry, and let sit 1-hour room temperature before seasoning to cook.

For the Cajun spice

In a bowl combine cayenne, mustard powder, coriander, chili powder, thyme, cumin, and black pepper.

For the herbes de Provence rub
In a bowl combine thyme, savory, rosemary, marjoram, lavender.

For the turkey
Soak the wood chips for 1 hour, thoroughly drain, then make 2 smoking pouches.

Preheat BBQ to medium or 350 F (175 C) with indirect heat.

Rub the entire turkey with vegetable oil.

On a tray set the turkey skin side down and season half the bird with Cajun spice and the alternate half with herb de Provence.

Turn the turkey skin side up and liberally season the top of the bird with the Cajun spice on one half and the herb de Provence on the other, mirroring the nonskin side seasoning.

Place the turkey on the direct heat side of the grill and cook for five minutes to char the skin.

Place the smoking pouch under the grill on the lit side of the barbecue and replace after one hour with the second pouch.

Move turkey to the indirect side of the grill to smoke for eighty minutes with the lid closed or until an internal temperature of 165 F (75 C).

Rest turkey for half an hour, loosely tented with tinfoil, before carving.

For the gravy
Preheat barbeque to medium or 350 F (175 C).

Grill turkey bones, cook until charred.

Grill carrot, celery, and onion cook until all sides are charred then chop to make mirepoix.

In a pot combine cooked turkey bones, mirepoix, four cups water, chicken stock, thyme, rosemary, bay leaf, and juniper berries

Simmer for ninety minutes or until reduced by half, then strain, set aside.

In a medium pot, melt butter, whisk in flour, continue to whisk over low heat until smooth.

Whisk the stock into the flour butter mixture, stirring often to prevent lumps.

Simmer until a sauce texture is achieved, then add the mustard, salt and pepper.

To Finish:
Place turkey on a platter, carve and serve with the gravy.

Note: Cooking times and temperatures will vary depending on the size and type of your barbeque.

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