Apple Cider Recipe:
Put some of your favorite apple cider in a pot, drop in a cinnamon stick or two, a few whole cloves, a slice of lemon, heat until warm, and get your house smelling like Thanksgiving. For added kick add in some amber rum, sit back and watch the parade.
Brine recipe and turkey prep:
To get ready to eat your best turkey ever, start about 30 hours before. First rinse out your turkey and trim away any residual fat. For the brine warm some apple cider, brown sugar, Kosher salt, garlic, cloves, garlic, onion powder, ginger, and bay leaves and stir until ingredients are dissolved. Let cool, place the turkey in a bucket, pour the brine over it and enough water to cover the turkey, and place in the refrigerator for 24 hours. Take out of the brine 6-8 hours before cooking. Pour out the brine, place the turkey back in the bucket, and put back in the refrigerator. This will make the skin crispier. Take out of the bucket 1 hour before grilling, smoking, or roasting and bring to room temperature.
Cooking the turkey:
Put your turkey in a roasting rack in two disposable aluminum pans, add enough water to just cover up the bottom of the rack, and rub the whole bird with olive oil. Soak apple or your favorite wood chips in some white wine. Put the chips in a smoker box, put the grill on high, and when the chips start smoking turn the burner below the chips off. Get the temperature down to 325 degrees and put the turkey on the grill. After 1 hour of smoking turn the turkey over for an hour, and after the second hour turn back over. Rule of thumb is 15 minutes of cooking time per pound of turkey. When your turkey reaches an internal temperature of 130 degrees add some potato, onion, carrots, and celery to the bottom of the pan and continue to cook. The turkey will turn dark from the brown sugar and apple juice so if you want it a little lighter simply cover lightly with foil.
Turkey is done when the internal temperature reaches 165 degrees so make sure you take readings from a few different parts of the turkey. Remember to keep the pan juices for gravy, let the turkey rest covered for at least 20 minutes before carving, and have a great meal.
This recipe will also work with chicken, capon, or any bird.