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To Pluck or Not to Pluck?
I have never deep fried a turkey before. I would like to try it if I get one this spring.
Is it worth the effort to pluck a turkey for deep frying or can it just be skinned out?
I would recommend plucking the turkey. That outer skin when glazed, will form a good crust and keep the inter meat moist. What time is dinner?
For sure, pluck, if you are going to deep fry. I’ve watched my brother deep fro a number of them. They turned out great, all domestic turkeys. He deep fried at 350 degree oil temp, for 3.5 minutes a pound.
Pluck and inject with butter/seasoning if deep frying, otherwise much of it will be too tough to eat
FYI - When I was younger ... my Dad and I raised 100 domestic turkeys. We learned the best method to dressing the birds is to boil hot water (enough you can submerge the bird), dunk the bird in hot water, and then pluck. Submerge the bird say 30 seconds or enough to soak the feathers. This does one of two things ... 1) it kills any lice or “critters” on the bird, and 2) it seems to “loosen” the feathers from the skin, so that you don’t tear the skin. I should mention that we did not gut the bird, until after we plucked the birds. This made gutting the bird “cleaner”. This dunking in hot water is a smelly process ... warm wet bloody feathers/water.
Plucked mine this year and don't regret it at all. Looks very clean and appetizing. Gonna try the deep fried method and pray it turns out well. Any brine and pre deep fry suggestions?
I usually bone out the breast and cut off the legs. Only takes a matter of minutes. Wild turkey is fantastic smoked without the skin. Just put the breast and legs in tin foil to hold moisture. What ever method you use make sure you don't allow the moisture to escape!
JMG is right about scalding the bird before plucking smells bad but much better product with much less work
I started deep frying my Turkeys years ago. Did one for my Brothers on Thanksgiving and they loved it,said they would never bake a Turkey again.Too bad the oil is so expensive!
Pluck if deep frying or for the oven ... do the hot water dip first, takes the oil off the feathers and they wont make as much of a mess
I skin mine. I cool the breasts on the grill, nuggets, General Tso’s.... all sorts of dishes. The legs I usually braise for carnitas. The rest of the carcsss is used for stock
To you guys who are deep frying a wild turkey, how are the legs and thighs? I would think they would be tough as heck.
If you pluck then deep fry, the whole bird is very tasty. The legs are a bit tough but not so much that is bad. The thighs are excellent. I've done this many times with birds I've taken.
That said my family insists I break the birds down now. I make schnitzel from the breasts and I never have leftovers! I make Steve Renellas turkey/apple sausage from the rest of the bird. Since I started doing that my family wont let me consider another preparation. It's that good.
If you break the birds down I dont bother plucking. I start at the breast and fillet back to the spine. Just skin the bird as you go. It basically pulls right off. This way I can debone the whole bird in under 10 minutes
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What type of oil do you use?
Can the oil be reused?
Peanut oil, & yes you can reuse it. They make filters for it also. Determine how much oil you need by putting the bird and water in the pot first. Lots of videos out there of people people using too much oil and dropping the bird in and overflowing the oil onto the burner!!