no… more… turkey…

We were successful. I have deep-fried a turkey. Wow. For the most part it went off without a hitch. The turkey was yummy (though it could have been better, more on that in a bit). No one was burned (rock on)! And my house is still here! For those interested here is the rough timeline of events:

Tuesday – The 21lb 22oz Turkey goes into the fridge to start to defrost.

Saturday 4.25pm – I set up the turkey fryer. My friend Tak comes over to help. Together they pour over 4 gallons of oil into the pot. The fryer successfully lights (without any explosions). The oil starts to heat (it’s gotta get up to 350 degrees before the turkey goes in.

4.25pm – 5.15pm – Tak watches the oil heat. I spend most of my time rubbing down the turkey with spices and injecting it with the marinade. I come to the decision that I don’t like sticking my arm inside a turkey. The oil’s hit 350.

5.20pm – Guests start to arrive. The help me get the turkey onto the frying stand and we carry it down. The turkey goes in and the oil boils over (lesson 1), scaring us a little and killing a small patch of the lawn. The fryer settles down. The temperature dropped (lesson 2) after the bird was added so we turned up the heat.

5.20pm – 6.40ishpm – Fry turkey fry!

6.45pm – Turkey comes out. Sweet Potato Fries go in.

6.55pm – Fries come out and the oil is shut off to cool. Now that it’s drained, the turkey is ready to carve. This is a first for me and I’m clueless. Mark first informs me that I have the turkey upside down and I’ve been trying to carve the back (lesson 3). Lara, Joel’s wife, gives me a crash course in carving a turkey (lesson 4). Thanks to Sarah and Denis for bringing the ultra cool carving board.

7.00pm – Everyone is eating! In an hour and forty minutes we cooked a 21lb turkey! I try the white trash “wine” Tony brought. Never drink wine that has a screw off cap (lesson 5).

       flash forward

10.00pm – Last guests leave

10.10pm – I’m in bed asleep

It was a great evening. There were a couple more things that I learned. The turkey was probably in about five minutes too long so it was a little drier than it should have been. So that’s something I have a better handle on for next time (lesson 6). Also, I’m not going to use the store bough marinade next time. It was way to salty (lesson 7). It could also be that the bird was salty as well. All I know is I woke up really dehydrated in the middle of the night; my apologies to anyone who had the same experience. But all and all it was a great first try! Thanks to everyone who joined in the experiment: Tak, Jenny, Aaron, Mark, Kim, Ken, Jen, Joel, Lara, Hannah, Abby, Tina, Chuck, Tony, Angie, Patrik, Eric, Andy, Novak, Aaron, Maria, Sarah, Dennis and all those whose names are just not coming to me now! Jenny and Andy documented a lot of this so pictures will be coming. Oh, one last lesson: after a while, you can get real sick of the smell of turkey.