It’s turkey time, and I couldn’t be happier! This is one of my favorite times of the year because I love any excuse to eat turkey! This recipe for a Smoked and Lacquered Turkey is easy and delicious. It’s also a show-stopper, beautiful turkey with amazing flavor from the glaze.
I’m generally not much on brining. Many people are though, and if you like that, knock yourself out. I just don’t think it improves the texture or flavor enough to consistently do it.
What makes this turkey taste so good?
The secret to this turkey is in the sage butter under the skin. It’s a messy job, but well worth it. The butter will keep the turkey juicy and flavorful. I seasoned the turkey with my Bold Seasoning and Grillin’ Shake. Heavy on the Bold, light on the Shake. Stuff the turkey with lemons, oranges, onions, and herbs (I love the smell of Thyme cooking in a turkey) and you’ll be in business.
For this recipe, you want to use a smoker that you can consistently control the temperature and one that you can raise the temperature pretty high for smoking. I cooked the turkey at 325 and then raised the temp to 400 for the “lacquering” phase.
Why such a high temp?
Turkeys, like other birds, don’t have the tough collagens and fats that pork has, for example. While you need to render the fats and break down the collagens in pork butt or brisket, you simply want to get your turkey cooked. It will be tender, and the longer you cook it, the higher the chance of drying it out. I cooked this turkey to an internal temperature of 155 in 3 hours, then let it rest for 30 minutes while I made the glaze and raised the temperature of the smoker. Glaze the turkey, put it back on for 5 minutes then glaze again. Beautiful and delicious!
As always, I hope you enjoy and have a great Holiday season!