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Old 11-21-2005, 10:51 AM   #1
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Thumbs up My first deep fried chicken experience

My brother brought a turkey frying rig the other day so that we could finally do fried turkey for Thanksgiving. Since none of us has ever done this before we decided a dry run was in order.

Saturday he brought the rig over to my house. I had picked up a 7ish pound chicken which was to be our test subject. I dry rubbed the chicken and then we went outside to set up the rig. It was very easy to do. We decided to set it up on my lawn (level spot and a decent distance from the house or anything else).

We had previously measured how much oil we needed using the water displacement method so once the rig was set up we filled it with peanut oil to the spot that we marked. We lit the burner and placed the pot on top. The oil temp started to climb right away. Within 15 minutes we were at 350 degrees so the chicken went in (slowly). The sound it made was like Pavlovs bell. We all started drooling immediately. It sounds and smells were amazing. We learned that we had to monitor the temp very closely so that it stayed between 325 and 350. It was not a lot of work, but it did require constant attention.

I had read that chickens actually take longer to cook this way than turkeys 9because of the size of the cavity) so the one website I saw talk talked about that suggested 9 minutes per pound. That would have been about 60 minutes for our chicken which seemed like a long time to all of us. We decided to check it after 45ish minutes. I am glad we did because it was already overcooked. We took two temp readings. the first read 180ish and the second about 3 seconds later read 190ish. Well this is exactly why we did this dry run. We don't want to make this mistake with the Thanksgiving day turkey. Of course we will go with the 3.5 minutes per pound for the turkey, but we will check it before the time is up.

The chicken was definitely overcooked and dry, but not horrible. I had some gravy in the freezer so we used that and the dryness was not too bad. The flavor was great. We considered this dry run a huge success even though the bird was overcooked. I can't wait to do this again on Thursday.

It also just so happens that 6 weeks before I had done my first canning experience. I had made pickled green tomatoes from my garden. They needed to sit for 6 weeks before we could open them and the 6 week point just happened to be on Saturday. They were delicious and went great with the fried chicken.

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Old 11-21-2005, 11:28 AM   #2
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Love pickled tomato, do it every year.
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Old 11-21-2005, 12:17 PM   #3
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More Btus!

Quote:
Originally Posted by GB
... The oil temp started to climb right away. Within 15 minutes we were at 350 degrees ...
Aren't those turkey fryer burners something else? While I have never deep fried a turkey, I bought one of those burners to fire my 15 quart pressure fryer. In addition to heating the oil quickly, it makes a really cool sound while doing it.

And, the burner is not just for frying - I took mine to the campground this past weekend for use as a heat source for my wok. Outstanding results! I will definitely do that again.

Tom
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Old 11-21-2005, 12:19 PM   #4
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Yeah Tom the sound was awesome!

I actually have been wanting to get a rig specifically for wok cooking, but I can't talk the wife into letting me spend any more money on toys right now so I will just have to borrow my brothers
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Old 11-21-2005, 01:10 PM   #5
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So how did the chicken taste?

I'm curious about the rub. Did its flavor make it past the skin of the chicken?
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Old 11-21-2005, 01:28 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GB
Yeah Tom the sound was awesome!

I actually have been wanting to get a rig specifically for wok cooking, but I can't talk the wife into letting me spend any more money on toys right now so I will just have to borrow my brothers
GB, what type of burner was it?
Was it sort of like a larger version of a gas stove/rangetop burner? I've got a couple of those, and they can make some noise, but they pale in comparison to the big boy I have.

It's a 100,000 BTU jet burner (Basically a tube with a gas jet at one end and the flame at the other). That sucker sounds like an F-16 on takeoff!

It will also bring 13 gallons of water from about 65F to 180F in about 25 minutes!

John
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Old 11-21-2005, 02:38 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Andy M.
So how did the chicken taste?

I'm curious about the rub. Did its flavor make it past the skin of the chicken?
The meat of the chicken tasted like plain chicken. The rub did not penetrate at all. The rub was an afterthought though and only went on about 30 minutes before it took its oil bath. You could really taste it on the skin though. Fantastic flavor! With the turkey the rub will be going on at least 24 hours before cooking (and maybe closer to 30 hours) It will be applied to the skin, but also under the skin wherever we can.
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Old 11-21-2005, 02:40 PM   #8
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GB, what type of burner was it?
Was it sort of like a larger version of a gas stove/rangetop burner?
The burner looked like a multi pointed star, maybe 10 or 15 points. The flame shot up and was dispersed by the points of the star. I am not sure how many BTU's, but I am sure it is a lot less than your monster. It did sound like a jet engine though. It had a sort of roar, that is the only way to describe it.
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Old 11-21-2005, 02:45 PM   #9
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Have you considered adding a liquid to the rub and injecting it into the flesh?
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Old 11-21-2005, 03:01 PM   #10
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Yea we had considered that, but decided that for this first turkey we would not do it. There were a few reasons for that decision. One was that my inlaws are used to doing things a certain way. They love my cooking and always try everything I make, but it is hard for them to change from the usual way of doing things. The fried turkey is a big enough change for them that I do not want to start injecting flavor. The rub had a decent kick to it too and I want to make sure that there are parts of the bird that are not super saturated with the rub flavor. My guess is that the rub will penetrate the meat, but not super far so they can still have turkey that is unaffected if they want. Another reason we decided to not do it is because we have never injected anything before and since this is our first fried turkey, we wanted to limit the number of unknowns so that we don't mess it up. Mom put a lot of pressure on us this year. She is nervous that the bird won't be as good as one that she would make in the oven. I am sure she will be happily surprised though

We definitely will inject in the future though (and the near future at that I am sure ).
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