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View Full Version : How to clean a turkey?


Vigilante
11-24-2006, 10:48 PM
I was just wondering how everyone else cleans a turkey. Gutting the birds goes without saying, so I'm just wondering how you guys take care of the outside of the birds. I shot one the other day and decided to skin it instead of trying to pluck the thing. My dad plucked his, but it took him forever. I also was told by a guy that the best way is to skin the things, and then breast them out. Seems like a waste to me, but to each his own. I'd like to hear everyone's techniques.

Hunter
11-25-2006, 12:13 AM
Generally I will skin the birds like one would a pheasant. Then just cut thighs/legs off and separate the breast. Since most of the birds we get are running 12-15 lbs or more, there is too much to eat at one meal for us. So we typically will cookup the legs/thighs for a meal and then the breast meat for 1 or 2 other meals. Now on special occasions, I will go ahead and pluck the bird and leave them whole (it's lots more work). On the last hunt we did get two birds, one was skinned and the other was plucked. That plucked bird made it to the deep fryer yesterday and was the star attraction at T-Day dinner:D. Sure was moist and tender cooked that way (first time for me).


PS. This whole thing with breasting out birds is indeed a waste. I see guys doing that to doves and I think, OK the legs and thighs are really small. BUT then I will see those same guys breast out a goose and leave more meat on a thigh than was on an entire dove! Then when you see guys doing that to turkeys and leaving the leg/thigh meat behind is just.........well let say it is not my bag. There are lots of ways to cook the legs/thighs and for a turkey the thighs are mighty tasty and moist. Go figure.

malaya248
11-25-2006, 6:01 AM
if you have a big pot dip your turkey into hot water for 10 seconds and start plucking, if you dont have big pot then just pour hot water to your turkey, that's the way i plucked chicken and duck. just a quick note don't use boiling water or your bird will be cooked.

Vigilante
11-25-2006, 11:46 AM
if you have a big pot dip your turkey into hot water for 10 seconds and start plucking, if you dont have big pot then just pour hot water to your turkey, that's the way i plucked chicken and duck. just a quick note don't use boiling water or your bird will be cooked.
Is it quite a bit easier to pluck the feathers out after they have been in hot water?

Also, do the plucked birds typically taste better that the skinned ones? I noticed that I cut quite a bit of fat off when I skinned mine.

jmlivingston
11-25-2006, 12:27 PM
if you have a big pot dip your turkey into hot water for 10 seconds and start plucking, if you dont have big pot then just pour hot water to your turkey, that's the way i plucked chicken and duck. just a quick note don't use boiling water or your bird will be cooked.

That's what we did when I was a kid and my family would get 10 or 20 chickens at a time. I think we actually boiled the water though; but my, that's a memory from a quarter-century ago.

John

pieeater
11-25-2006, 12:55 PM
Skin it and make fried turkey strips out of the breasts.Dip in ranch hot mustard etc. Boil the meat off of the rest of the carcass and make a wild rice and mushroom soup with it. Also the thigh meat with green chilis makes a good burrito.

WokMaster1
11-26-2006, 12:33 AM
That's what we did when I was a kid and my family would get 10 or 20 chickens at a time. I think we actually boiled the water though; but my, that's a memory from a quarter-century ago.

John


Boiling H2o works. Never had a prepped chicken until I came to the US. It's always live birds from the market & I learned how to slit their throats & pluck them feathers.

When you pour hot water over the chicken skin, it loosens the feathers, obviously & it melts some of the fat under the skin & tightens the skin allowing the skin to be crispier after frying or roasting.