Giving thanks during the Thanksgiving holiday weekend is the traditional blessing of the harvest by giving thanks. Gathering of family, feasting on food, kicking off the holiday season - it's all there to be had. It doesn't matter if it is secular or sacred as it is left up to each individual family to determine their method of celebration.
I faced the challenge of the elements not being as conducive to my planned smoking of the turkey on our Big Green Egg as I had hoped. A little ingenuity on Wednesday had me create a tent with some tarps to protect me and the smoker from the forecasted rain.
It was enough to allow me to get the fire going. One of my BBQ gurus continues to claim the smoke should be done at 325-350 degrees. It's not surprising that my decision to start with a smaller pile of lump wood burned out after an hour which required a quick removal of the bird to add more wood. The bird was looking great by the way at this point. Beautiful color on the skin and smelling really good. I put a bit too much wood in, fired things up and now had too big of a fire that I spent every 5 minutes trying to control. One usually has the other issue with the Egg, but not this time. The wood was burning hot.
Long story short, I had to pull the bird off of the Egg after 2 hours and do the final hour in the oven since the fire was starting to burn the skin. Luckily, Tara and Alexa helped me out big time to salvage what could have been a lost turkey. So I had a lot to be thankful for yesterday that we didn't lose our bird.
I will just make an electronic journal of that attempt right here. In the future, I'm dumping that guru's advice and going with the 250-275 temp that I've used before even though it takes longer. Or I might try a spatchcock version. Regardless, yesterday won't be repeated.
Once it hit our internal goal of 165 degrees, we let it rest for 20 minutes and I carved it up.
The dark meat was the best at it had absorbed the cherry wood smoke really well. The meat was very moist, but we removed the skin on the breast as it was simply too dark to eat. The white breast meat was fine underneath it, but I know I can do better.
Thankful that we had a wonderful meal and family time together.
We dove into evening movies (Godfather Parts I & II) and tucked in for the evening.
Thankful for the family time together (not sure about the harvest). We took some family photos Friday morning, the ladies headed to Black Friday shop, I watched the Iowa vs. Nebraska game and we all went out for a nice dinner to avoid cooking or warming things up. That will come tomorrow when I do my traditional Thanksgiving casserole.
I hope all of your friends and family shared in giving thanks and blessings of the harvest or year that has been. Or whatever your traditional celebration may be.