When Thanksgiving rolls around each year, we begin to think of good friends, great family members, and those long lost relatives that we've not seen in many years. But more importantly, we begin to think about how we plan on preparing that delicious turkey on the pit.
These days it is relatively easy to buy smaller turkeys or even turkey breasts or thighs, year round. If you are doing the whole family thing, then select a turkey that fits your needs - fresh, if available. If it is frozen, carefully follow the directions for thawing. Trim excess fat and skin and pat dry.
Fire up the grill for roasting - about 350 degrees. Build a good, large bed of coals and reduce the heat by closing down the air supply. Collect a small amount - 3-4 pounds of green fruit wood, white oak and hickory.
(EARLY PS: You can do this in the oven also if you are so inclined) Sprinkle the turkey inside and out with a mixture of:
1 Tbs salt
1 Tbs. Fresh ground black pepper
1 Tbs. thyme
1 Tbs. rubbed sage
1 tsp. celery seed, ground
1 tsp onion powder
1 tsp garlic powder
Place turkey on the grill, opposite the coals, breast up. Close the grill and go away for about an hour.
Check the temperature of the exhaust, look over the coals and put on a few pieces of green wood. If you must use chips or dried wood, soak in water for at least thirty minutes.
Maintain the temperature between 300 - 350 degrees with a gentle smoke floating from the exhaust. Tidy up, close the grill and go rest from your labors.
Check back in about an hour later and insert your handy thermometer in the center of the thickest part of the bird. When it reads 165 degrees, time is up. It is done. Remove and let it sit for about 20 minutes before carving.