Location, at Home, CA
We had a wonderful Christmas day yesterday!
Our niece Chelsea invited us to her house to spend the day. Clyda and I supply the BBQ'ed turkey and a ham and they supply the remainder of the meal. Her husband Steve does the cooking and a really great job it is.
I cooked the turkey on Christmas eve about mid-day. I keep an old Weber BBQ kettle around just for that. Here are some photos of the process.
I light the charcoal with an electric starter. No fumes from starter fluid that way.
I put my charcoal in groups of five briquets, ready to add five to a side every 30 minutes.
Aluminum pan ready to put under the bird with 1/2 inch of water in it to add moisture and catch those all important drippings for gravy.
Rosemary ready to be add to the grill when I add charcoal. It adds flavor to the smoke.
I use a rack to hold the turkey up-right. No real need for the chains for a smaller bird. The pan is only used to carry the bird to the grill.
I add a quartered onion to the cavity and some sprigs of rosemary.
I baste the outside with a mixture of chopped rosemary, olive oil, and pepper.
Briquets are ready and I have added 5 new briquets to each side.
Five more will be added to each side every 30 minutes. I do this by sliding the lid sideways and dropping the briquets through the hole provided in the grill. The lid is never removed to retain the heat during cooking.
Turkey is on the rack over the drip pan ready to cook. It will cook for 11-13 minutes per lb.
In this case a 13 lb turkey will cook for 3 hours and reach an internal temperature measured in the thigh with a thermometer of 170 degrees.
Three hours later. Perfectly done! The gravy is to die for!
I am limited to a 12-13 pound turkey by the size of the BBQ. I don't want the turkey to touch the lid. I have been doing turkeys to perfection this way for years.
I also have a lot of rosemary as I have two hedges built from the Tuscan Blue variety. It comes in handy at Thanksgiving or Christmas time.