Tuesday, October 25, 2005

Turkey Themed Cooking Party

I joined The Outdoor Chef, the local hot spot for bbq and grilling supplies, this weekend for a Cooking Party. They decided to do fried and smoked turkey in anticipation of the upcoming holidays. The party was very well planned and well executed.

I was really expecting the party to be a group of experienced cooks that were looking to share the experience with other bbq cooks. Sadly I was mistaken when I discovered that this was more like taking a hands on class at Home Depot. The people in attendance knew surprising little about bbq and were not there for the same reason I was. Besides this fact the party was entertaining and of course there is always room to learn.

Ray Bonner, owner of The Outdoor Chef, and his wife had brined a turkey for at least 24 hours, then smoked it on a pellet cooker. The smoked turkey was already done when we got there. He started the party by preparing a raw turkey for frying. Ray injected this turkey with a garlic sauce while explaining that you need use the same point of entry and rotate the needle around to get the most penetration of the injection. When finished prepping the turkey, he took us all out side to submerge the turkey in the preheated oil.

Ray did a very good job of explaining what he was doing and why he was doing it. Food safety was in mind and he made several good points to keep in mind. While things sometimes things seem like common sense, it is always good to be said.

While the theme was Turkey, we grilled some vegetables and desert. As anyone that enjoys cooking with fire knows, there is more than one way to cook a meal, and the grill is one of them. We used skewers to cook a variety of vegetables including sweet onion, bell peppers, squash, mushrooms and more. After placing the vegetables on skewers and brushing with olive oil, we dusted them a choice of bbq rubs (I chose garlic and herb) grilled for a few minutes until it began become tender.

Desert was some delicious grilled fruits. We mixed honey, rum and cinnamon and brushed it over grilled bananas then topped with some Ben and Jerry's French vanilla. WOW, this was good.

Overall, this was a very fun experience and I am looking forward to going again. My brother-in-law, Steve, went along with me and I would not have done it without him. Thank you Steve for coming along and enjoying the cooking party. For only $15.00, this way a great way to spend a couple hours of an otherwise rainy, dreary Sunday afternoon. I will be posting the recipes and instructions as time goes by, so stay tuned!