Hickory-Smoked Bourbon Turkey
- 1 Whole turkey of 11-pound, thawed
- 1 tbsp Pickling spice
- 2 Cups maple syrup
- 1 Cup bourbon
- 1 Celery rib
- 1 Large carrot, scraped
- 1 Medium onion, peeled and halved
- Hickory wood chunks
- 1 Lemon
- 2 tsp Pepper
- 1 tbsp Salt
- Remove the giblets and neck from the turkey and reserve it for other uses, if desired.
- Rinse the turkey thoroughly with cold running water and pat dry.
- Add the water to a big stockpot, filling half full and stir in the maple syrup, pickling spice and bourbon.
- Add turkey and additional water to cover, if required.
- Cover and chill turkey for 2 days.
- Soak hickory wood chunks in fresh water for about 30 minutes.
- Prepare charcoal fire in smoker and let fire burn for about 20 to 30 minutes.
- Remove the turkey from the water, discard the water mixture and pat dry.
- Cut carrot and celery in half diagonally.
- Stuff the cavity with carrot, onion and celery.
- Pierce the lemon with a fork and put it in the neck cavity.
- Combine salt and pepper and massage the mixture over turkey.
- Fold the wings under, and tie legs together with twine, if desired.
- Drain the wood chunks, place on coals and put water pan in smoker.
- Add water to depth of fill line and place turkey in the middle of the lower food rack.
- Cover with smoker lid and cook for about 6 hours till a meat thermometer inserted into the thickest portion of turkey thigh registers 180 degrees F.
- Add additional water, charcoal, and wood chunks as required.
- Remove the turkey from the smoker and let stand for about 15 minutes before slicing.