Fried turkey, the official food of Thanksgiving hoons, only gets better when prepared with an engine hoist. Here’s Mike Bumbeck’s holiday classic on how to dunk your bird in boiling oil properly. — Ed.
Those of you who have not yet deep-fried a turkey and enjoyed its crispy yet still juicy goodness are indeed missing out on the turkey day experience. This deep-frying exercise is not to be taken lightly. Hooking a propane tank up to a flimsy stand upon which five gallons of hot oil and a big ‘ole turkey sit bubbling is a recipe for one heck of a grease fire. Even lowering the big bird into the bubbling oil is an exercise in danger. Jalopnik is here to show you how to deep-fry even a monster bird with relative safety and amusement.
Each year the warnings hit the news about the dangers of deep-frying a turkey. Some folks compete for the Darwin award and try to pull this off inside. This is a very bad idea. Please do not attempt to deep-fry turkeys in the house. Also don’t try to pull this off on a dried out wooden deck attached to the house. That being said, the second great problem is lowering the giant bird into the hot oil without getting burned. Years ago we stumbled upon this procedure over at Big Nate’s house at a holiday-related function. A 17-pound bird on sale for six bucks at Ralph’s and an engine hoist sitting in the garage got us thinking it was a procedure worth revisiting.
What You’ll Need:
· Turkey Fryer Setup
· Engine Hoist
· 5-gallons Peanut Oil
· Propane and Propane Accessories
· Service Cart or Similar
· Bailing Wire
· Hand Tools
Prepare the fryer setup. Place bird in fryer pot. Cover with water. Remove bird. Mark or note water level. This is how much oil you’ll need. Dry the pot and add the same amount of oil.
Wash and dry the bird inside and out. Prepare the bird. No stuffing! We kept it simple and used our sekrit spice rub for additional flavor.
Light the burner and heat peanut oil to 325 degrees. Don’t set the world on fire. Don’t go play video games and leave the pot unattended.
While the oil is heating up affix the bird and holder to the engine hoist. Bailing wire is your friend.
Position the turkey and hoist for lowering. Beware not to knock the fryer setup over with hasty or ham-fisted hoist movements!
Release hydraulic pressure on the engine hoist to SLOWLY lower the bird into the oil. Watch for spattering. That oil is wicked hot. Cook turkey about 3 1/2 minutes per pound.
Success! Raise cooked turkey from oil. This 17-pounder was cooked to crispy perfection in under an hour. Allow bird to drain and cool over grease pot.
Use hoist to lower the bird onto a service cart or similar. Unhook the bird. Relocate bird from garage to house. Carve and enjoy!