Spatchcock Turkey with Roasted Root Vegetables
- one turkey (Chef Eric Prefers a 10 to 12-pound bird)
- 1 lb unsalted butter, melted
- Cattleman’s Grill Ranchero Seasoning
- 2 lbs root vegetables (carrots, radish, turnip, parsnip, onion), medium dice
For the cherry sauce:
- creme fraiche
- 1 tbsp horse radish
- 1/2 white onion
- 1/2 cup cherries
Spatchcock the turkey by placing a dry towel on a cutting board (the towel will prevent the bird from slipping and it will collect any juices that would otherwise pill onto your table). Place the bird on top of the towel cavity down and facing away from you. Using a paring knife place a small incision on both sides of the color bone (aka wishbone) and pull it out. This will help in the carving.
Using a sharp chefs knife or a strong pare of poultry shears cut out the backbone (it is a good idea to use a cut glove). If you are using a knife keep the bird standing up and cut down one side of the backbone. Lay the bird on its side and cut on the other side of the backbone to remove.
If using shears, place the bird on the cutting board breast side down and cut from either end down each side of the backbone.
Now that the backbone is removed place the bird on the cutting board breast side up. Place both hands on the breast and push down to crack part of the keel bone and portions of the shoulder joints and ribs.
Use a kitchen injector, inject the melted butter throughout the white and dark meat. Be sure to inject evenly throughout the bird. Try your best to not puncture the skin while injecting.
Use a bit of the leftover butter to cover the outside of the bird. Starting from the inside of the bird, season what was the cavity first. Flip the bird over and season the presentation side. Place bird skin side up atop a bed of your chopped and mixed root roast.
Stabilize your Kamado Joe at 325ºF. Place two chunks of cherry wood (not soaked) on the fire. Before you put your root roast and bird on the grill, wait for the cherry wood to combust. The smoke should go from cloudy white to cleaning up and having a clear with a blue tinge. This should take about five minutes.
Rake all of the coals to one side of the grill. This will be a direct cook but you want to have the bird as high as you can so use the conquer and divide system and set your grill grates to the highest setting. Place the tray with the turkey and root roast on your cooking service and close the lid. I prefer to have the side of the tray with the legs on it directly over the side we banked the coals to.
Cook 1 ½ hours to 2 hours. There is no need to turn the turkey over. Take the temperature of the breast. Health code mandates that the chicken reaches 165 degrees internal temperature. I prefer to take the bird off when the white meat is at 160 degrees (carryover cooking will take it to 165 as it rests) and the legs/thighs are around 180. Double check and make sure that the bird has risen to the correct internal temperature before serving.
At this point, you are done. Let the bird rest for 10 minutes and carve the bird the best way you see fit.