Dressing Rehearsal

Kesiah, Evin, and Kate
Originally uploaded by Matt Stratton.

So Carrie and I are having Thanksgiving dinner at our house this year for my family. Upon the recommendation of my friend Lou, I am going to be cooking the turkey on the Weber.

Given that I’ve never done that before, and the high-pressure of Thanksgiving, we decided to host a “practice Thanksgiving” (a “dressing rehearsal”, if you will) on Saturday. We invited a bunch of friends over to bring some dishes, so that we could practice cooking the bird in this manner.

We brined the turkey for about 12 hours prior to cooking. Carrie made a mixture of olive oil and melted butter, which she rubbed under the skin of the turkey. I cooked it using the indirect method on our Weber, and used apple wood chips on top of the coals. I also sprayed the skin of the turkey a few times with a mixture of butter, turkey broth, and orange juice.

First issue – I used too many coals at the start, which made the grill too hot (causing the bird to cook quicker than I’d have liked). I was still cooking to temperature, so it definitely got cooked. It took about 1 1/2 hours to get the internal temp on the breast to 170. After I took it off the Weber, I wrapped it in foil and it sat inside for about 3 hours (since it finished up way before our guests arrived). When we served it, it was still plenty warm, and very very moist and tasty.

Second issue – this relates to the “too hot of coals” issue above, but the drippings in the drip pan got totally burnt, so Carrie was not able to use them for gravy. If I put the water in the pan BEFORE they start to burn AND not have as hot of a fire, this should not happen again.

Regardless, the bird was a huge hit with my friends, and we learned enough to make it super awesome for the “real deal” on Thursday.

We also had a good time playing with all “younger” generation (Sam, Kate, and Kesiah). We can tell we are grown-ups now for two reasons – a) after a party, there are not empty beer bottles in the bathroom, and b) there are children at our parties.

~ by Matt Stratton on November 19, 2007.

2 Responses to “Dressing Rehearsal”

  1. Sounds delicious!

  2. Mmmmmm….

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