Friday, December 2, 2016

Brick Oven Thanksgiving

I recently finished a brick oven for a big family.  Thanksgiving was coming up.  They wanted to cook a BIG turkey and I'd let them know that I'd done just that for two Thanksgivings.
turkey in my original oven

Many people feel daunted by large cooking endeavors in brick ovens.   Not this family.  
Here's what the process looked like for them; their words:

I think it was a 21 lb turkey.  Jamie anticipated it would need to cook for approx 6 hrs.  We put it in shortly after 7.  I got up at 3 to start the fire to let the oven soak.  It was a small fire (didn't want the oven too hot) and I kept feeding small pieces in every 30-45 min.  The brick was reading 500-550 by the time the turkey went in.  Jamie rotated it (turned the pan) every 45 min or so to even out the cooking.  At 11:30she went out to turn it over (it was breast down) and the turkey was done and so tender the meat was pulling off the bone.  It ha a wonderful smokey flavor.  

Lessons learned:

Smokey flavor is easy
why not bread too
1.  Don't fear the heat.  The oven cooks gently and thoroughly.  You just have to keep and eye on it.

2.  Things tend to cook a little faster.

3.  Brick oven turkey is awesome!

I had in the past cooked entire Thanksgiving dinners in my oven, starting with popovers at high temp and moving to the turkey, breads, and fixings and finishing with pies.   It takes a bit more 'management', something I'm certain will be accomplished by this family in the near future.

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