11-06-2011, 02:19 PM #1
Herb Rubbed Smoked Turkey Breast with Jalapeno InjectionDescription:
With Thanksgiving Day right around the corner, it's time to start thinking about putting the all important menu together for that special meal. There are all kinds of ways to cook up a turkey, and quite frankly, I'm not opposed to any of them. Smoked, deep fried, or even cooked in the oven, I've had some good ones over the years. But seeing as how this is an outdoor cooking site, I'll leave the indoor gas oven out of this one! This recipe is for a smoked turkey breast injected with homemade jalapeno butter and seasoned with herbs. Sound good? I'm here to tell you, it is! Here's how we do it.Difficulty: Easy
- What you'll need:
- Turkey breast, or whole turkey, preferably 12 pounds or less
- Olive Oil
- Pecan, hickory, apple or cherry wood or chunks
- Ingredients for the injection:
- 6-8 fresh jalapeno peppers, seeds and membranes removed, chopped finely
- 1 tbs minced garlic
- 1/2 cup butter
- 3 oz. beer
- 1 tsp finely ground black pepper
- 1/2 tsp McCormick Poultry Seasoning (which consists of small amounts of crushed thyme, crushed sage, crushed marjoram, crushed rosemary, crushed nutmeg, and a tiny amount of finely ground black pepper)
- For the rub:
- 1 tbs paprika
- 1 tsp course ground black pepper
- 1 tsp celery salt
- 1 tsp McCormick Poultry Seasoning
- Start out by getting your fire up and running in your cooker. For this cook, I used my offset smoker and burned pecan wood for a light, nutty flavor. I would suggest a mild wood, such as pecan, apple or cherry. Hickory would do nicely as well, but is a little stronger than the others. I have done this exact recipe on the Weber Kettle as well, using the same set up as I would to smoke ribs, which can be found HERE . The idea is maintain a 300-325 degree fire for around 3-6 hours, depending on whether you are doing a turkey breast or a whole turkey, and also the size of the bird. You want to choose a turkey that is 12 pounds or less, otherwise it takes too long too cook on the smoker, and the outer portions will get overcooked and dry while trying to get the deep internal portions done. We did an 8 pound turkey breast for this cook and it took around 3 hours. While the fire is getting going, go ahead and make the injectable marinade. Combine the butter, chopped jalapenos and minced garlic in a skillet and melt the butter. Stir the mixture frequently and let it simmer for about 5-7 minutes after the butter has melted to extract the flavor from the peppers and garlic and "infuse" the butter.
- Next, strain the butter, jalapeno and garlic mixture through a colander and into a small container. Add about 3 ounces of beer and the black pepper and McCormick Poultry Seasoning to the liquid. Stir it together to thoroughly mix the ingredients. Next, inject the turkey with the marinade using a food syringe. They key is get the injection into as many spots on the turkey as possible. If the injection marinade starts to get a little thick, just reheat it in the microwave.
- Coat the outside of the turkey or turkey breast with a light coat of olive oil. Combine the ingredients for the herb rub and mix them together well. Season the outside of the turkey with the herb rub.
- When the fire in your smoker or other type cooker has come up to around 300 degrees, put the turkey or turkey breast on and cook it to 160 degrees internal in the breast, or 165 degrees in the middle of the thigh for a whole turkey. These temps will allow you to "rest" the turkey covered for about 20 minutes after you bring it in and it will come up to the perfect temps of 165 for the breast and 170 for the thigh. You want to use a good meat thermometer to check your temp, and do not let it go past the target temperatures, as it will dry out. Here is a starting out picture of a turkey breast on the Weber Kettle, followed by a finishing picture of a breast on an offset smoker.
- When the turkey has reached the target temperature, bring it in and cover the turkey loosely with a foil "tent". Let it rest for around 20 minutes. Slice the turkey or turkey breast and serve with your favorite sides! Note that if your turkey breast slices or other pieces have a slight pink color, do not be alarmed. That is normal for smoked turkey. Just make sure that the temperatures of the final product are what they should be (165 for the breast and 170 for the thigh). Please stay tuned to the website as I will have several recipe ideas for turkey leftovers coming up in the next few days and weeks leading up to Thanksgiving.
- What you'll need:
Another excellent looking dish!
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