Big Poppa's Thanksgiving Turkey Tips


I made up the recipe on the spot for the chorizo but here is is from memory

Do the normal dicing of carrots celery and red bell pepper....if you want heat in the jalapenos just chop them crown needs the jalaps mild so I seed and core and smoke till soft...(a little evoo helps) Then I dice it real fine.....The make some corn bread Preferable a coupla days in advance cause stale is ok.....saute the chorizo in a separate pan and when it is done set aside and reserve...saute the onion diced peppers and jalapenos until the onions are translucent and then mix the chorizo in.........take the cornbread and mix it in a bowl with the chorizo veggie mix and season with salt and pepper....pour enough chicken stock to make it seem like stuffing and put in a baking dish and smoke at 300 for about 45 minutes....I hope I didnt forget anything....

you can also make the cornbread with the chorizo in it with some fo the jalapenos and some shredded mexican cheese and honey dont forget the honey if you are making it as a cornbread side dish.

BP, I'm going to make this. Can you give me an idea of how much chorizo and how many jalapenos you used?

Big Poppa

Lets talk stuffing
Here is low cost way to separate yourself and make a little variety on a traditional dinner. It is impossible to make a really horrible stuffing consider that the traditional boxed stuffings use the cheapest bread on earth.
First off understand that you are basically making a semi wet mush prior to baking or smoking.

All stuffings consist of Dried bread, sauteed veggies and stock and salt and pepper

The veggies are always diced Carrots, chopped onions and celery. What else can you add? Fennel (go easy) Leek, Shallot, garlic, any form of pepper.(understand the strength of flavor and consider when blending dont let one ingredient dominate

The bread traditional is cornbread or white bread or mystery bread that is in the boxes....the bread is dried either by leaving out for a day or putting in the smoker or oven, But you can use any bread! One of my favorite was a Kings Hawaiian Bread stuffing with Hawaiian linguica and carmelized pineapple and macadamia) So think about your favorite breads...that is a starting point...Squaw, Turbo cornbread (thats one that your doctor) sourdough, pretzel name it

Meat...some have it some dont It is usually sausage....but that opens up ALL sausages...Chorizo Hot italian sweet italian kielbasa you name it

Fruits...either pan softened with butter and spices or dried...Think Pineapple, Apple...Think dried blueberries...cranberries... cherries sounds crazy but it really isnt.

nuts...I have used pistachios cashews peanuts macadamia you name it

Spices....salt and pepper.....cumin cayenne rosemary sage the whole rack....

Now you want to create one from this free for all....think of what sounds good when you connect it and that will be your guide..."Rye Dill cherry bologna" nope sounds terrible. Now how about "Squaw bread with cranberry, walnuts, and sausage" This is one way that I create...its sort of like a palate of know your basic ingredients you know that you can stretch or expand each category Mix it together and add chicken stock to make mush and go for it!

with spices understand that your ingredients pack flavor so the more ingredients you have the less spices you will require both in quantity and number of spices.
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Fantastic dressing primer BP
I'll using turkey stock instead of chicken stock. My family has always used the Pepperidge Farms Seasoned Bread Crumbs for stuffing. Your chorizo and smoked jalapeño cornbread is going a be a big departure from tradition but I can't wait. :)


New member
Got a free turkey for getting a flu shot. Then another free turkey for a new prescription. Cut the breasts off and used the rest for stock. I'm asshole deep in turkey stock! It's so damn good.


It freezes well in quart mason jars.
No where around here gives turkeys away like that!!


New member
Big Poppa, this is my 1st time back on here after a very long absence. I've been sick for a long time and I'm excited to get back using my Mak 2 star. I have a couple questions I'm hoping you can answer.

Momma is letting me smoke an approx. 12 lb Turkey. First question is what flavor pellets might you suggest?

Do you brine before you smoke...if so, any ideas?

Any moisture pans or do you put water or stock in with the turkey when placed in the smoker?

Can you elaborate on herbs and such for seasoning the bird?

And I think lastly, I am still unsure of exactly where horizontal in the shoulder means.....for checking temp.

For pellet flavors, I have Hickory, apple, cherry, sugar maple, black walnut, pecan, mesquite and oak. Just not sure what to use.

Do you know of anyone ever using cheesecloth to bast during smoking? Or might that block smoke from penetrating the bird.

I'm sure I'll have another question, but for now, any help would be appreciated.
Thank you,
Jim Batruch

PS: ordered a resupply of black walnut. The shipping time was excellent. Appreciate the fast service.
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New member
BP, Ty
I reread your original post and saw no reference to pellet flavor. I was thinking cherry. Also, I will assume herbs and such are suited to taste? I've never used any herbs, but have to learn sometime.
Ty, Jim

Big Poppa

I dont use herbs but sage is safe with salt and pepper....Any flavor but mesquite...and probably hickory are ones to avoid with turkey
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