Well, I picked up a 12 pound turkey today.  Looked up a brining recipe online, thawed it in water for about six or so hours, and now have it brining in the refrigerator for the next 48 hours.  This is going to be an interesting experiment, as I need to get my smoker up above 250 degrees.  It is a Big Chief, and typically does not get above 160 degrees.  So as a test, before Friday when I go to run a couple tests.  first I am going to pull out the drip tray and line the bottom of the smoker with aluminum foil.  Second, I am going to actually move the drip tray (which is removable) and put it half way up the smoker so that it captures more heat inside a smaller area.  I am going to drill a small hole in the front aluminum panel for a thermometer and test the temperature.  If it is above 250 and under or between 325 degrees, Fahrenheit we should be good to go for a six to eight hour smoking.  If I cannot get it above 250 degrees, I will have to smoke the turkey for a couple of hours, and then finish it off in the oven, which, I am hoping I will not have to do.

I started smoking beef jerky about a year and a half ago, and have limited myself to that.  This is going to be a stretch and an experiment.  If I cannot get the heat above 250 degrees, I may sell this smoker and look for another electric one that the temperature can reach higher temperatures for smoking big slabs of poultry like a 12 pound turkey.

Anyone have any tips?

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We’re a group of suburban preppers in the Northeast and live in the NYC suburbs that write The Suburban Survival Blog to talk about preparedness and self-reliance out there to help others prepare for what could be an uncertain future due to economic, weather, and other reasons.