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From: John De Armond
Newsgroups: rec.outdoors.rv-travel
Subject: Fried Turkeys
Date: Mon, 15 Nov 2004 17:41:46 -0500
Message-ID: <>

I do around a hundred and fifty of those each Thanksgiving.  It's the best
turkey I've ever had, particularly with my injectant recipe :-)

Kits to do this are available everywhere around here this time of year.
All seem to have the same crappy, very noisy chicom made burner.  I buy
the kits for their pots and turkey holders and throw away the burner.  I
have a huge 3 burner, 100kbtu per burner stockpot range in my restaurant
that I do the cooking with.  If I have to go out on location for a
catering, I use this burner:

This burner runs on low pressure propane.  If the propane regulator
pressure setpoint disc is screwed down as tight as it will go, this burner
will produce around 50kbtu, enough for turkey frying.  The burner can also
be run on the high pressure regulator that comes with the turkey kit.
That's what I do.

Here are some tips:

I don't use peanut oil.  Too expensive.  The only reason the fryer mfrs
push peanut oil is that it has a high flash point, giving some margin of
protection to careless people.  I use ordinary fryer oil and keep an eye
on it.

Fry at 350 deg.  No higher than 375.  If the oil is allowed to go higher,
the outside will burn before the center of the breast is done.

Put the injected turkey in the empty pot, then pour in the oil until the
turkey is just covered.  This is the right amount of oil.  Oil expands
considerably as it heats up so don't go any higher than the top of the
turkey.  Pull the turkey back out, heat the oil and fry.

Use a 12 lb bird, +- a half pound.  Anything smaller cooks too fast.
Anything larger will burn on the outside before the breast is done.

After injecting spices, wipe the bird down with a moist cloth.  The idea
is to remove excess moisture and the sugars from the injectant that will
burn and stain the bird black.

When injecting the bird, use 40 or 50 small shots all over the thing
rather than trying to pump massive doses of spices in through one or two
shots.  I use a multi-shot vet syringe, available from Tractor Supply.
Each pull of the pistol grip shoots the set amount.  I use 1.5cc per shot.
The syringe holds 50cc and I shoot two syringes per bird.

If you make your own injectant, mill the spices to a face powder fine
consistency in a coffee mill.  Make up the liquid and strain through
cheese cloth.  Failure to do it this way will result in stopped up needles
and many cuss words :-)

If you have time, let the injected bird sit in the fridge for a few hours
to let the injectant diffuse through the tissue.

Be sure to remove the pop-up doneness indicator if the bird has one.
Fried plastic is not tasty!

Buy only the cheapest house brand turkey you can find.  I use either my
food supplier or Wallyworld, depending on my mood.  The brand name birds
like ButterBall contain other seasonings that conflict with the Cajun

Heat the oil to 350 deg and when it gets there with the burner still on
full, start lowering the bird slowly into the oil.  Keep it slow enough
that the foam doesn't get near the top of the pot.  It's a good idea to
wear heavy gloves to protect your hand from the steam.  I take at least a
minute to dunk the bird.

Watch the oil thermometer that comes with the frying kit.  Initially the
bird will soak up as much heat as you can throw at it and the temperature
will drop.  As the moisture is driven out of the outer layers of meat, the
temperature will rise.  As it approaches 350 deg, turn down the burner to
keep it steady.

Cook until the core breast temperature reaches 180 deg.  About 45 minutes.
I use those cheapo remote sensor electronic oven thermometers with the
probe stuck in the breast to monitor progress.

I get 3 fryings on a batch of oil.  Then I throw it out.  I've not had
much luck filtering the oil to extend its usage.

To dispose of the oil, pour it back in the container it came in after it
cools.  Take it to your friendly locally owned restaurant and ask to pour
it in their grease pit.  Grease disposal for the restaurant is either free
or it pays the restaurant owner a little so he should not mind.

I do NOT try to save any oil.  I tried it once and the next year it had
gone rancid.  Not worth the effort, considering that a 35lb container of
regular fry oil is only about $13 at Sam's Club.

Considering that WallyWorld is selling a complete kit for about $35 right
now, if I wanted fried turkey while I was staying in an RV park, I think
I'd just buy a kit, cook my turkey(s) and then either give or throw it
away.  That Northern Tool burner that I specify above is easy to pack away
in the RV (the legs unbolt) and is very handy for all sorts of outdoor
cooking.  Crab, Clam, shrimp, etc boils, for instance.

I have a great injectant recipe.  I'm not going to post it to the net but
with a little arm twisting :-), I could be persuaded to send it via email.


On Mon, 15 Nov 2004 10:06:35 -0800, "Peter Pan"
<> wrote:

>I was at one place in Idaho that made something cool for Thanksgiving that I
>had never seen out West before (seen it back East, not in the West, but was
>very good!). It was a deep fried cajun spiced turkey. The CG hosts made two,
>one cajun/fried and one roasted. At the end of the day, the Fried one was
>picked clean, while the roasted one was pretty much left alone. Too bad a
>turkey sized frier is not good for RV storage/use (it was extremely messy,
>smoked like crazy, used outside, and the oil was heated over a propane
>flame), but dang if it wasn't the best I ever tasted. Too bad the CG closed
>(for the season) at the end of November, I was wondering if they would make
>another for Xmas..

From: John De Armond
Newsgroups: rec.outdoors.rv-travel
Subject: Re: RV Cooking
Date: Mon, 09 Jul 2007 21:22:11 -0400
Message-ID: <>

On Mon, 09 Jul 2007 19:15:58 -0400, bill horne <> wrote:

>I'm not a pro, and it's not rocket science. You start lowering the
>turkey. If it foams too much, lift it part way back out, and then
>lower slower. I use a plain ole work glove on the lowering hand to
>keep the few hot spatters off my knuckles.

The work glove is a very BAD idea.  When (not if) a big blorf of oil gets jetted up,
it'll soak in either cloth or leather and sizzle-fry your hand while you're trying to
get it off.  Most likely you'll drop the turkey in the process and end up with a
belly or crotch full of hot oil too.

I use these:

non-porous silicone rubber hot gloves.  $16.23 at the Chattanooga store.  These
gloves are non-conducting enough that I can reach down in the deep fryer and scoop
stuff out.  I've had said oil blorf hit my gloved hand many times with little more
than a slightly warm sensation inside.  I prefer the bright red ones, of course.  A
critical parameter to tasty cooking :-)  I seemed to have come through the weekend
with one less pair since someone boosted a pair off the top of my pit on Saturday.  I
hope they're allergic to silicone!

>If you're wondering how much oil to use: Put the frozen bird in the
>cooker. Using one-gal milk jugs (or whatever you've got) pour in
>water until the bird is just covered. Now you know how much oil to
>put in when the time comes to put in oil.

Yes.  Important to use water instead of oil.  A cold bird plus cold oil == a slimy


From: John De Armond
Newsgroups: rec.outdoors.rv-travel
Subject: Re: RV Cooking
Date: Tue, 10 Jul 2007 02:30:26 -0400
Message-ID: <>

On Mon, 09 Jul 2007 23:50:58 -0400, bill horne <> wrote:

>Neon John wrote:
>> On Mon, 09 Jul 2007 19:15:58 -0400, bill horne <> wrote:
>>> I'm not a pro, and it's not rocket science. You start lowering the
>>> turkey. If it foams too much, lift it part way back out, and then
>>> lower slower. I use a plain ole work glove on the lowering hand to
>>> keep the few hot spatters off my knuckles.
>> The work glove is a very BAD idea.  When (not if) a big blorf of oil gets jetted up,
>> it'll soak in either cloth or leather and sizzle-fry your hand while you're trying to
>> get it off.  Most likely you'll drop the turkey in the process and end up with a
>> belly or crotch full of hot oil too.
>I don't get blorfs. I lower slowly. If I thought I needed to protect
>against what you hypothesize above, I'd need a full-body asbestos
>suit. Turkey frying is a non-problem.

You've done what? 7, 8, maybe 10 turkeys?  Get back to me after you've done a
thousand and see if you can still claim that it's a non-problem.

It doesn't happen often but occasionally some water will get trapped somewhere in the
bird (probably under the skin) and there'll be rumble in the pot and a little steam
eruption which drives a jet of oil out of the bird's body cavity and right onto your
hand if you're holding the standard hanger hook.

My advice isn't for you anyway.  You already have all the answers and are too
self-infatuated to listen.  it's for others who might take your kind of advice to
heart and get burned.

>> I use these:
>I use $3/pair of leather gloves. Same gloves I use for handling
>burning wood in my campfires. If I should fuckup and get a blorf -
>and I'd have to fuckup to get one - I can just sling the glove off.

No you won't.  Leather almost instantly draws up and gets hard when hot oil hits it.
It'll grab onto your fingers like a leech.  I have the burn scars to remind me of how
quick that happens.  I got an object lesson on why one doesn't wear work gloves to
carry out a bucket of hot oil to the grease pit. By the time you feel the heat,
you're already burned.

Since you're so big into theory, why don't you do a little field test?  Put on your
favorite glove, heat up some oil and dip your bird finger up to the second joint in
it.  If your theory is correct then you can simply sling it off, no harm done.  If
mine's correct then, well, I suspect that we won't hear a word about it.

I'd a thousand times rather get hot oil on my bare hands than on absorbent gloves. At
least then some of it splashes off and the rest CAN be slung off.  I've had that
happen any number of times and have no scars to remind me.

I don't give out safety warnings very often but when I do, there's a solid reason.
For everyone else, my suggestion is either do it bare-handed or get some non-porous
gloves. Even thin vinyl exam gloves are better than work gloves.


From: John De Armond
Newsgroups: rec.outdoors.rv-travel
Subject: Re: RV Cooking
Date: Mon, 09 Jul 2007 15:13:16 -0400
Message-ID: <>

On Mon, 09 Jul 2007 10:42:21 -0700, David The Hamster Malone <>

>On Jul 9, 12:44 pm, Neon John <> wrote:
>> I haven't done an
>> oven turkey yet but that's only because I don't particularly like oven turkeys. Cajun
>> deep fried, now that's another matter!
>That reminds me... someone gave us an outdoor turkey fryer (looks like
>this one)
>Any idea what type of oil/grease to use in it? I've never fried a
>turkey in my life but I'm willing to try...

Sure.  I did a couple hundred fried turkeys every holiday season
(Thanksgiving/Christmas).  Lots and lots of experience.

Use the cheapest oil Sam's or whatever has.  They push peanut oil but that's just the
lawyers talking.  It has the highest flash point of any cooking oil and therefore is
less likely to catch on fire when a dumb*ss walks away and leaves the burner on.

You'll find that burner to be quite frustrating.  It makes great noise but little
heat.  It makes it very difficult to maintain the oil temperature while cooking.

This is the burner that I use when I do on-site frying for a customer:

Great burner.  I have even larger ones in the restaurant but that one works fine in
the field.

The key to successful frying is to keep the oil temperature uniform.  Heat it to 350
degrees.  Immerse the turkey and turn the burner wide open.  Heat is carried off
rapidly by the boiling water in the turkey so it takes all the heat you can muster to
maintain temperature.  Don't try anything larger than 12 lb birds.  Anything larger
and the wings and legs burn before the breasts get cooked.  Cook until the central
breast temperature is in the 170 deg range.  I use those remote bulb thermometers
made for gauging roasts in ovens.  The kind with the armored cable.  <$20.

OK, now you're about to be honored with one of my soooper secret John G's recipes -
my world-famous Cajun turkey injectant.  Your life will never be the same....

6		TBL		Paul Purdome's Seafood Magic
1.5		TBL		Mrs. Dash
1		tsp		garlic powder
5		cups		Vinegar
1/3		cup		Balsamic vinegar
1		Cup		Worcestershire Sauce
2		Cup		Honey
1/3		Cup		Texas Pete hot sauce
3		TBL		Cinnamon
1		tsp		Rosemary, finely powdered

All the dry spices are mixed and run through a spice (coffee) mill until face-powder
fine.  THIS IS VERY IMPORTANT!  If they're not that fine then they will stop up the
hypodermic needle.  The mix can be filtered through a fine cloth (sheet, cheesecloth,
etc) but I'd rather keep all the spices in there and just make sure they're all

This is a mild recipe, something my customers wanted.  If you want more burn,
substitute Tabasco sauce or something even stronger.  Very finely powdered cayenne
pepper works too.

Mix everything together and cook at a low boil for several hours.  Make up the liquid
volume with more vinegar.  Let cool.  The mix can be stored indefinitely (years) in
the 'fridge.

Inject the turkey many times all over, using about 5cc at a shot.  I shoot 100-150cc
per bird.  I have a livestock multi-dose syringe.  This syringe holds 50cc and can be
set to provide a set dose per trigger pull.  The semi-automatic of the vet world :-)
I use a 1" long 18 or 16 ga needle.  Use the smaller needle if your spices are fine
enough, as the hole "bleeds" less.  I "stitch" the bird, working lines of shots up
and down the breast about an inch apart.  The legs and wings get a few shots, as does
the top meat.

After shooting, wash the bird in cold water and let drip.  Washing is necessary, as
the injectant has sugar in it which will burn black on the skin.

To cook, preheat oil to 350 degrees.  Dry the bird with a paper towel to prevent
splattering of the hot grease.  Put it on the holder and gradually drop it down in
the oil.  I take 45-60 seconds to lower the bird.  This process lets the surface
water boil off without spattering too much oil.  Once the bird is under oil, put a
lid on, turn the gas wide open and watch the thermometer.  Keep it in the 350-400 deg
range.  A 12 lb bird takes almost exactly 45 minutes to cook.  After the first 10
minutes, things stabilize and little burner attention is needed to maintain

I found that I could do three birds to a batch of oil.  Then it was time to throw it
out and start over.  The oil rapidly loads with burnt proteins and takes on a foul
odor and taste.  I suggest doing three birds and freezing what you don't eat at once.
The used oil does not store well, going rancid rather quickly.  Turkey freezes and
reheats extremely well.

The best way I've found to get rid of the used oil is to absorb it into kitty litter
and toss it in the garbage.  Most garbage services get pissy if they find liquid oil
in the trash but solidified oil is fine.  Or, of course, you can take it to a
restaurant and dump it in their oil pit if they'll let you.

Another trick.  To reheat the turkey to nearly as-cooked condition, put the meat in a
microwave-proof shallow container and drape it with several layers of saturated paper
towels.  Dripping wet, as wet as you can get 'em.  Heat in the microwave.  The
microwaves boil the water in the paper towels and the resulting steam is what does
most of the heating.  The meat is as moist and juicy as when first cooked.


From: John De Armond
Newsgroups: rec.outdoors.rv-travel
Subject: Re: Spud-O-Mania
Date: Tue, 01 Apr 2008 15:18:26 -0400
Message-ID: <>

On Tue, 1 Apr 2008 08:35:26 -0700, "Just Plain ol' Dusty" <>

>Was that whole (in the round), peeled, quartered?

Whole, unpeeled.  The skin is extremely thin and turns almost transparent upon

>> (You might notice that I'm not terribly big on measuring.)
>I see that you're a graduate of my school of precision measure...(:-o)!  All
>I've got left to do is figure out what's in that "Mrs. Dash" stuff...

Mrs Dash is a seasoning blend found on the spice isle.  It was originally peddled as
a salt substitute.  Doesn't work too well for that but it's an excellent general
purpose seasoning mix.

>*FOUR* hours??  Wow!  Unless that's a typo on your end, that's certainly a
>new technique to me.  I would never have thought that you'd have anything
>but mush after that...

Yup, 4 hours, plus or minus whatever's convenient.  Ordinary bakers would come apart
after that long but these tough little bullets are just right.  If you like some
crunch then don't cook as long.  They won't pick up the spices as well, though.


From: John De Armond
Newsgroups: rec.outdoors.rv-travel
Subject: Re: RV Cooking
Date: Mon, 09 Jul 2007 19:35:56 -0400
Message-ID: <>

On Mon, 09 Jul 2007 14:43:34 -0500, Bob Giddings <> wrote:

>That said, I priced one take out at a local Cajun restaurant and
>they want $50 bucks a bird!!  That seems high to me.  And an
>opportunity for others.  :o)

I based my prices on weight, but a typical bird would come close to that. High $30s.
If I had a fancy building and large staff to pay for, mine would have been $50 too.

Yeah, they're worth it.  Once you do it once, you'll agree, both from the taste and
the cost/labor standpoints.  The wholesale price of a turkey is around $1/lb.  Those
..33/lb loss-leaders you see advertised at Thanksgiving are just that, loss-leaders to
get you in the store.  Wholesalers don't conceive of the term.  A batch of oil ($10)
only lasts for 3 birds.  Figure a buck or two for the spices.  Then there's the
labor.  It takes a good 10 minutes to shoot up the bird, another 5 to 10 to trim it
up suitable for frying, tying the legs in, drying it, etc.  Then there's the 45
minute cook time.  I don't do it for my health so there's overhead and profit to
figure.  All that quickly adds up.

I don't particularly like turkey ordinarily.  Smother it with enough gravy and it's
edible.  I LOVE cajun fried turkey.  I generally end up eating half the first bird I
cook every year. Then I waddle off for a nap. It's that good.


From: John De Armond
Newsgroups: rec.outdoors.rv-travel
Subject: Re: RV Cooking
Date: Mon, 09 Jul 2007 15:30:02 -0400
Message-ID: <>

On Mon, 09 Jul 2007 15:13:16 -0400, Neon John <> wrote:

>This is the burner that I use when I do on-site frying for a customer:
>Great burner.  I have even larger ones in the restaurant but that one works fine in
>the field.

Forgot to add.  I use the high pressure regulator, the type with the red adjusting
knob on top.  This regulator is capable of 0-5psi.  That burner is designed for 11"
water pressure but if the holes are reamed out* then it will run fine on higher
pressure gas.  I calculated that it runs at about 75,000 BTU when I'm frying turkeys.

* the burner holes are as-cast which in the Chicom world means rough.  I use a drill
bit that almost fits the holes and ream each one using a cordless drill.  The idea
isn't so much to enlarge the holes as it is to smooth them up and remove the
protuberances that cause excess turbulence.


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