It was really hot today. And by hot, I mean 100+ degrees F outside. In fact, it’s supposed to be in the high 100s and mid-70s at night for the next five days. That’s a whole lot of ridiculousness. Yuck. So my goal for the next week is to not use the kitchen. At all. Okay, so that’s a slight exaggeration. I’d like to not turn on the stove or oven. The PG&E bill is already going to be out of control. I’m scared. But I digress.
So to continue on with smoking some more meat, I threw on a maple-brined turkey breast while my brisket was also smoking. Uhm. Oh. Holy. Chopsticks. Why haven’t I ever smoked a turkey breast, let alone a turkey before?! The smell and taste of the smoked turkey was intoxicating. It was just pure deliciousness. I am now a firm believer that turkey should never be consumed unless smoked. Tomorrow, sandwiches. Thanksgiving, here we come!
Maple Brined, Apple Wood Smoked Turkey Breast on the Big Green Egg
1 (4 pound) turkey breast, bone-in
6 bay leaves, rinsed
6 sprigs thyme, rinsed
6 sage leaves, rinsed and slightly bruised
1 carrot, diced
1 small to medium white onion, diced
1 cup good quality maple syrup
1/3 cup brown sugar
1 head garlic, 1/4 inch cut off from the top
1/2 cup salt
2 tablespoons whole black peppercorns, slightly crushed
Applewood chips, soaked for at least 30 minutes
Place turkey breast in a large stock pot, and add just enough water to cover. Place all ingredients into the stock pot, and stir until well incorporated. Cover and refrigerate for at least 12 to 24 hours.
Heat the Big Green Egg (or smoker of your choice) until it reaches a stable temperature of 225 degrees F. Add the wood chips when the coals are hot. Place a disposable drip pan underneath the turkey. Cook the turkey, skin side up, until the internal temperature is 160 degrees F (about 1 hour per pound).
Remove from the smoker, wrap with foil, and place in an empty ice chest to allow the juices to redistribute.
Slice and serve.