Deep fried turkey tips from Chef Bobby

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Many dream of tasting or preparing a deep fried turkey on Thanksgiving, but don't know how to attempt making it. Chef Bobby Nahra from Lakeland Banquet and Event Centre gives us his tips for preparing the very best deep fried bird. 
 
Rinse and pat dry the entire bird.
Make sure the bird is not stil frozen, and that all the water is removed from bird. It must be 100% thawed. 
Place turkey on hook rack and slowly dip bird into hot oil.  
Remember 350 degrees 3 ½ minutes per pound on the bird. I like to pull my bird out of the fryer around 170-175 degrees. 180 is just too dry.
 
Important reminders
1. Water causes hot oil to burst and spray, leading to injury and property damage. 
2. Turkey fryers require constant attention while in use and should never be left unattended. 
3. Only adults who have read this manual may operate this appliance. 
4. Never fill propane tanks over 80% full. 
5. Never allow oil to exceed 350 degrees Fahrenheit. 
6. Always use heat protective gloves. 
7. Never operate underneath an overhead obstruction or on a deck. 
8. Use common sense! 
9. Misuse of this product may result in injury, property damage or death.
 
Wearing gloves, slowly submerge food into oil. 
a. This may take as long as 90 seconds to prevent splashing and overflow. 
b. DO NOT add other items or accessories to hot oil.  When poultry is fully submerged, remove grab hook from rack. 
 
COOKING BEGINS WHEN POULTRY IS FULLY SUBMERGED. 
 
Inserting food will reduce the oil's temperature. Slowly increase heat to get oil temperature back to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.  
a. This will take several minutes. 
b. It is very important to monitor the oil's temperature.
 
For a turkey: 
a. Fry for 3 to 3.5 minutes per pound or until golden brown. 
b. For a single chicken, fry for about 18 minutes or until internal temperature of chicken reaches 165 degrees when measured with a probe thermometer. 
 
For multiple chickens at once: a. Fry for about 20 minutes or until internal temperature of chicken reaches 165 degrees when measured with a probe thermometer. When poultry is done, shut off all valves and gas supply.  Wearing gloves, retrieve the poultry with the grab hook. Place rack and poultry on absorbent paper and let drain. When poultry has cooled to manageable temperatures, remove from rack and serve.
 
Frequently asked questions.
1. How large of a bird will fit in a pot? a. A 30 qt. pot will hold a 20 lb. bird. 
2. What is the best way to season poultry? a. You can sprinkle and rub powdered seasoning under the skin or inside the bird. b. Thin liquid injection marinades may also be used in joints and drumsticks. c. Beer, sherry or wine can also be injected. 
3. What oil works best for frying? a. Peanut oil is preferred for its high smoke point and thorough cooking. b. Soybean and peanut oil blends are also acceptable. c. In the event of allergies, any vegetable oil may be used. 
4. How do I determine how much oil I should use? a. Place poultry into pot. b. Fill pot with water until the poultry is submerged.  i. There must be at least 3" between the water and the top of the pot. c. Remove the poultry.
 
How long can I keep oil? a. Refrigerated oil may be stored up to one year. b. Non-refrigerated oil may be stored from three to six months. 7. 
How do I strain used oil? a. Wait for oil to cool. b. Dip a spouted container into the oil and gently pour into the original container. c. Used oil and residue is at the bottom of the pot.  i. You may discard this oil.   1. Place in a container with a sealing lid and put with garbage.   2. Never discard oil in a sink or plumbing lines.  ii. You may also strain it with a funnel and cheese cloth.
 
Where does the thermometer go? a. The thermometer goes on the pot's side with the first inch submerged in oil. b. The thermometer should not touch the actual food during cooking.
 
Injection recipe:
Ingredients: 
1/4 C. apple juice or apple cider
1/2 cup water 
Tablespoon of honey optional
½ cup jack daniels
1 C. medium bodied ale
1-2 tsp. Cajun seasoning
2 tsp. garlic 
Salt and pepper to taste
 
Chef Bobby's Michigan Dried Cherry and Cranberry Chutney
1 cup dried Michigan Cherries 
1 Cup ocean spray dried cranberries
1 Bermuda Onion sliced thin
1 Stick Unsalted Butter
½ cup dark brown sugar
¼ cup port wine.  Melt butter and add onions sweat the onions for 5 minutes. Place all the remaining  ingredients in the skillet and simmer for 10 minutes cool and serve room temp  
 
Instructions: 
1. In a small blender, combine the apple juice, garlic juice, and Cajun seasoning. Blend until fine and well mixed. 
2. In a small saucepan, warm the apple juice mixture with the honey until the two are well integrated. Add the beer, salt, and pepper. 
3. Inject this into the turkey while it's still warm or it will become too thick! 
Bayou Classic Injection kit at local hardware store available
 
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