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Fried Turkey

November 23rd, 2007 · 4 Comments

As I greeted my cousin at his house for Thanksgiving, he handed me a beer and led me to one of those contraptions that cause fear in the hearts of otherwise courageous cooks – a propane tank and a pot full of 6 gallons of oil.

Apparently in accepting the beer, I was accepting the position of cooking the turkey which meant responsibility for the turkey, the garden surrounding his pool, and depending on the amount of heat tolerance the nearby propane tank was rated at – his house and immediate backyard, a forest, and maybe the nearby government military arsenal. It was obvious this was going to take extreme care. And another beer.

There was another good-looking (regularly roasted) turkey already done, and enough other food to feed a fire department and the army, which was good, in the event we had to invite either of them, so I wasn’t too worried about messing up the turkey. But the only instructions were stamped on the lid of the pot – 325F, for 3 and a half minutes per lb. After figuring out the turkey dunker, we got him set up and he got a seasoning of salt, pepper and paprika.


My cousin assured me he had done displacement tests, since we’ve all seen the spectacular spill-over fire videos. I donned one of those Okra brand lobster mitts, worried that I’d have a pink claw melded onto my hand should something happen, but there wasn’t any asbestos around. My cousin improvised a spatter shield. I slowly dipped the turkey into the oil, and a little did spatter over, but harmlessly.


So 52 minutes later, I pulled it out the same way, and he looked great.


It turns out that frying is a great way to cook a turkey – it’s fast, it stays moist, you get a crispy skin, and it has that intoxicating KFC smell. And if you’re adventurous, you’ve got 6 gallons of boiling oil if you want to fry anything else – like twinkies, Mars bars etc.

Seriously, you might want to read some directions other than mine if you’re trying your own turkey. And watch the videos linked above. Besides, we had professional help on speed dial – my another cousin who’s a fireman in Florida, whose advice in case of accident was ‘distance’.

Tags: Equipment and Tools · Meat Recipes · Uncategorized

4 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Marie // Nov 24, 2007 at 1:37 am

    Nice job!!! I never had fried turkey, but want to try it, I’m a little scared though!!!

  • 2 Wicked Good Dinner // Nov 24, 2007 at 3:56 pm

    You’re a brave Pilgrim! We tried this a few years ago…and still have the oil burn ring on the driveway. It was successful, but scary.

  • 3 Almost Vegetarian // Nov 28, 2007 at 5:09 pm

    Fascinating. Utterly fascinating. We don’t eat turkey or fried food, but that doesn’t mean I wasn’t interested in the process. So thanks for the post (and the pictures). Good read.


  • 4 jeena // Nov 29, 2007 at 6:21 pm

    Hi there great blog. :) This was an interesting read I loved looking at the turkey being dipped into the fryer. :) By the way could you add my link to your lists please, thankyou. :) Here is my link
    Jeena’s Kitchen