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Let Rendered Turkey Fat Drip onto Coals?


pmillen
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In my drum smoker, I would just allow the rendered chicken or turkey fat to drip onto the charcoal coals and make smoke.  It was, by far, better than those done on my Cookshack Fast Eddy PG500 pellet pit.

 

Yet, every kamado discussion I read advises deflector plate or catch pan use.  Has anyone just let the birds drip?  How good was the result?

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i did last weekend for the most part. I put a piece of HD foil under the "empty" side of the Kamado (KJ2 with a JoeTisserie). I had hoped this would at least divert the fat into the fire slowly, which seemed to work alright.

 

Everything was fine, until I bumped the foil during a temp check, and the resulting ::WHOOOF:: blackened a bit of the turkey.

 

All that said. Turkey tasted great, did not taste acrid or anything like that. I may try the foil again, but be a bit more secure with it this time to prevent that. I would much rather have most of the drippings aersolized than puddle in the bottom of my grill.

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9 minutes ago, KJTerp said:

i did last weekend for the most part. I put a piece of HD foil under the "empty" side of the Kamado (KJ2 with a JoeTisserie). I had hoped this would at least divert the fat into the fire slowly, which seemed to work alright.

 

Everything was fine, until I bumped the foil during a temp check, and the resulting ::WHOOOF:: blackened a bit of the turkey.

 

All that said. Turkey tasted great, did not taste acrid or anything like that. I may try the foil again, but be a bit more secure with it this time to prevent that. I would much rather have most of the drippings aersolized than puddle in the bottom of my grill.

Photos

First is the turkey at 2 hours, you can see the foil. Second is 2.5 when i took it off, and you can see the results of the great inferno.

IMG_3781.thumb.jpg.dd4eae401056f3e6ddd596de099e0768.jpgIMG_3782.thumb.jpg.ea974fa62d781da0206f5e9144570053.jpg

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Thanks for the rapid reply.

 

I never had a flame-up in my drum.  Do you suppose yours was due to the grease volume?

 

The turkey may be slightly closer to the charcoal on the Kamado Joe, Big Joe, than my old drum.  But it seems so similar that I'm thinking that it may be okay to set it up the same.

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I have found that personally I don't really care for the flavor that burning fat creates especially on something with a delicate flavor like chicken or other poultry.  Kind of a sharp, over smoked carbony taste, that obscures poultry's natural taste,  IMO anyway. I use a drip pan with all my poultry cooks. Although I let my Prime Rib and other big cut beef and pork cooks drip on to a foil wrapped deflector stone. I let thin lamb rib chops drip into the fire, but I don't like the fat burning taste on longer lamb cooks like leg of lamb or lamb shanks. Maybe just, me.  

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11 hours ago, MD_Ag said:

I always use a drip pan for turkey, but it's for gravy purposes. Toss some veggies and stock in there to simmer with the juices from the bird.

I like to used a drip pan too.  I foil the pan with an air space between the bottom of the pan and the foil.   The juices don't burn that way and can be poured off for gravy.

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17 hours ago, pmillen said:

Thanks for the rapid reply.

 

I never had a flame-up in my drum.  Do you suppose yours was due to the grease volume?

 

The turkey may be slightly closer to the charcoal on the Kamado Joe, Big Joe, than my old drum.  But it seems so similar that I'm thinking that it may be okay to set it up the same.

My flare up happened when I bumped the foil and a big slug of grease hit the fire. The motor was off too, since I was temping and that flare hit one spot. I got the motor restarted and closed the grill to snuff the flare up but the charring was done. I may have cursed. Loudly. But the meat was fine. 

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21 hours ago, pmillen said:

In my drum smoker, I would just allow the rendered chicken or turkey fat to drip onto the charcoal coals and make smoke.  It was, by far, better than those done on my Cookshack Fast Eddy PG500 pellet pit.

 

Yet, every kamado discussion I read advises deflector plate or catch pan use.  Has anyone just let the birds drip?  How good was the result?

 

I agree 100% that letting poultry drip onto the hot coals provides the best possible flavor on the bird.  

 

Kamado owners are terrified of this concept called 'thick white smoke' because they have been told over and over again that it will ruin their food.  There is little to no understanding of the difference between smoke coming from fat dripping vs smoke coming from smoldering wood.  

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On 11/17/2018 at 11:13 AM, pmillen said:

Thanks to all of you who took the time to comment.

 

For this cook, I'm going to let the bird drip on the coals.  There'll be another 12-pounder in the kitchen oven so, hopefully, we'll still have gravy.

you also don't need drippings for gravy,

take the neck, and the giblets, anything you trimmed off fat and skin wise, and maybe (definitely) buy a pack of TURKEY WINGS at the store (not smoked wings, just turkey wings)

put some oil in a pan, get it hot and brown the bejeezus out of all that meat, then cover with water, add aromatics (onions, celery, carrots, garlic), bonus points if you brown the whole aromatics a little too, and maybe add a little wine with the water, or a parmesan cheese rind section too, add a couple peppercorns, some bay leaves and some other standard herbs and let that bad boy simmer for a good long while, then strain out the solids and boom, turkey stock (you can make this days in advance by the way)

 

on gravy day, just make a quick blonde roux of flour and butter, and add the stock and ta-dah, gravy

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On 11/20/2018 at 8:45 AM, KJTerp said:

you also don't need drippings for gravy,

take the neck, and the giblets, anything you trimmed off fat and skin wise, and maybe (definitely) buy a pack of TURKEY WINGS at the store (not smoked wings, just turkey wings)

put some oil in a pan, get it hot and brown the bejeezus out of all that meat, then cover with water, add aromatics (onions, celery, carrots, garlic), bonus points if you brown the whole aromatics a little too, and maybe add a little wine with the water, or a parmesan cheese rind section too, add a couple peppercorns, some bay leaves and some other standard herbs and let that bad boy simmer for a good long while, then strain out the solids and boom, turkey stock (you can make this days in advance by the way)

 

on gravy day, just make a quick blonde roux of flour and butter, and add the stock and ta-dah, gravy

Thank you, it sounds fantastic.  I didn't read your post in time for the Thanksgiving cook but it'll be part of my next smoked turkey.

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My spatchcocked 12-pounder came out of the brine, was dried and seasoned and went into the preheated 375° pit cold.  It was at 160°/180° in an hour.

 

UNADJUSTEDNONRAW_thumb_a46.thumb.jpg.ad149c06ab9a5e1fe4ee5a3df75e422d.jpg

Turkey grease on coals makes a lot of smoke.

It was superb.

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