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Hickory Turkey

With a delicious hickory-smoked flavor, this grilled turkey brings a southern twist to the Thanksgiving table—Kim Russell, North Wales, Pennsylvania
  • Total Time
    Prep: 45 min. + marinating Grill: 2 hours + standing
  • Makes
    12 servings

Ingredients

  • 2 cups packed brown sugar
  • 3/4 cup salt
  • 1 jar (6 ounces) pickled ginger slices, drained
  • 4 bay leaves
  • 2 whole garlic bulbs, halved
  • 2 tablespoons minced fresh marjoram or 2 teaspoons dried marjoram
  • 2 tablespoons minced fresh thyme or 2 teaspoons dried thyme
  • 2 tablespoons minced fresh sage
  • 2 teaspoons crushed red pepper flakes
  • 3 quarts water
  • 1-1/2 cups reduced-sodium soy sauce
  • 1 cup maple syrup
  • 1 turkey (12 to 14 pounds)
  • 4 cups soaked hickory wood chips
  • 1 large onion, cut into wedges
  • 1 large navel orange, cut into wedges
  • 6 garlic cloves, peeled
  • 1/4 cup canola oil
  • 2 tablespoons sesame oil

Directions

  • In a stockpot, bring the first 12 ingredients to a boil. Cook and stir until sugar and salt are dissolved. Remove from the heat; cool to room temperature.
  • Remove giblets from turkey; discard. Place a turkey-size oven roasting bag inside a second roasting bag; add turkey. Carefully pour cooled brine into bag. Squeeze out as much air as possible; seal bags and turn to coat. Place in a roasting pan. Refrigerate for 18-24 hours, turning occasionally.
  • Prepare grill for indirect heat, using a drip pan. Add wood chips to grill according to manufacturer’s directions. Drain turkey and discard brine. Rinse turkey under cold water; pat dry. Place the onion, orange and garlic inside cavity. Tuck wings under turkey; tie drumsticks together. Combine oils; rub over skin.
  • Place turkey over the drip pan. Grill, covered, over indirect medium heat for 1 hour. Tent turkey with foil; grill 1-2 hours longer or until a thermometer inserted in thickest part of thigh reads 170°-175°. Cover and let stand for 20 minutes before carving.
Editor’s Note: It is best not to use a prebasted turkey for this recipe.
Nutrition Facts
10 ounce-weight: 607 calories, 31g fat (8g saturated fat), 245mg cholesterol, 235mg sodium, 4g carbohydrate (3g sugars, 1g fiber), 73g protein.

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