Turkey Drumsticks

November 16, 2013
Turkey Drumsticks - Featured

Is there a dish that makes you think of Thanksgiving?

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We each have our own, do we not?

A few weeks back, When my mom started the holiday conversation, I had to smile

Thanksgiving, let's figure out Thanksgiving!  When, where, and what are we going to have with our turkey?”

Thanksgiving = Turkey

To date, I've been give or take on turkey.  Mostly give because those I've had just haven't been show-stoppingly good.  They're typically dry, with very little flavor.

Turkey Drumsticks - Dinner tonight .. a grilled turkey drumstick throw-down! Read on to find which won our hearts .. was it the bbq baste or dry rub?

Or maybe I get distracted by the dessert table, nothing is clear

That evening

My husband flipped through November's Food & Wine for ideas on making an unforgettable turkey.  Many a furrowed brow later, “I can't get my mind around the whole bird turkey idea.  There has to be a different, more unique way.”

Turkey Drumsticks - Dinner tonight .. a grilled turkey drumstick throw-down! Read on to find which won our hearts .. was it the bbq baste or dry rub?

Leave it to him

A few nights later, I came home to nothing short of a turkey throw-down!  What?!

So much fun

These weren't full turkeys, but instead turkey drumsticks.  A couple of variations he wanted to try before prime time.  The first basted with a tomato/bbq sauce; the second covered with a flavorful rub.

Turkey Drumsticks - Dinner tonight .. a grilled turkey drumstick throw-down! Read on to find which won our hearts .. was it the bbq baste or dry rub?

So as we ate a killer dinner, I couldn't help but ask

A couple of steps in his process remained consistent.  The drumsticks all were brined ahead of time and cooked on the grill.

Nothing beats a good brine, especially for keeping meat moist while it's on the grill.  Not to say that one couldn't make a tasty turkey drumstick in the oven, but I just don't see that happening on his watch.

Why these two recipes?

Of the various choices he'd scoped, they seemed to offer a bit of everything.

Turkey Drumsticks - Dinner tonight .. a grilled turkey drumstick throw-down! Read on to find which won our hearts .. was it the bbq baste or dry rub?

The Pioneer Woman's incorporated a brine, along with a dry rub.

Derrick Rich (one of his regular sources) didn't include a brine, which he thought was an oversight, but had an interesting basting sauce. More notably was his procedure, with significant basting happening near the end of the grilling time.

Lessons learned.  If basting, one doesn't want to baste the entire time, or it will burn.  It's better to do it at the end

Who knew?

Turkey Drumsticks - Dinner tonight .. a grilled turkey drumstick throw-down! Read on to find which won our hearts .. was it the bbq baste or dry rub?

The verdict?

The bbq wasn't bad at all.  BBQ sauce on anything is always good, but it wasn't our first choice with respect to seasonings.  The sauce seemed to sit on top, as opposed to the dry rub method, which infused flavor throughout.

The other verdict?

I may just have to change my mind on turkey.  We made another batch for the week.  This time in the oven, to cut up and have in the freezer.  A nice addition to our go-to protein sources.

Enjoy!

xoxo

~ Adapted from a Derrick Riches recipe at About

Turkey Drumsticks

Ingredients

  • 6 turkey legs
  • 1 medium onion, finely chopped
  • ½ cup celery, finely chopped
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 (8 oz) can tomato sauce
  • ½ cup ketchup
  • 2 Tbsp brown sugar
  • 2 Tbsp mustard
  • 1 Tbsp butter
  • 1 Tbsp Worcestershire sauce
  • Brine (used the Pioneer Woman's below)
  • 4 quarts Water
  • 1 cup kosher salt
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 2 Tbsp seasoning blend (we used Montreal)
  • 1 whole bay leaf

Instructions

  • Brine the turkey legs
  • In a pot, combine water with the salt, sugar, brown sugar, 2 tablespoons seasoning blend, and bay leaf. Bring to a boil then remove from heat. Allow to cool, then pour into a large container or bowl filled with ice.
  • When the mixture is cold, submerge the turkey in the brine. Cover the container and brine in the refrigerator for 4 to 6 hours, more if you have time
  • Sauté onion and celery in butter until soft.
  • Add everything else except the turkey legs. Mix well and remove from heat.
  • Place turkey legs on a preheated grill over a medium-hot fire.
  • Grill, covered for about 30 to 45 minutes or until nearly done. Turn occasionally.
  • When drumsticks are close to being done, begin basting with sauce. Watch out for burning. If you boil the remaining sauce after you're finished basting you can serve it on the side.
Serves: 6
Nutrition + Show
Rating:
Calories 267
Total Fat 8.05g
Carbohydrates 14.86g
Sodium 607mg
Fiber 1.06g
Sugars 12.53g
Protein 33.32g
Print This Recipe

~ Adapted from the Pioneer Woman

Turkey Drumsticks

Ingredients

  • 10 whole Turkey Legs

Brine

  • 4 quarts water
  • 1 cup kosher salt
  • 1 cup natural sugar (Sugar in the Raw or Turbinado)
  • 1 cup brown Sugar
  • 2 Tbsp seasoning Blend (we used Montreal)
  • 1 whole bay leaf

Dry Rub

  • 2 Tbsp chili powder (more or less, depending on your tolerance for heat)
  • 2 tsp seasoning blend (we used Montreal)
  • 2 tsp paprika
  • 2 tsp onion salt

Instructions

  • Brine the Turkey Legs
  • In a pot, combine water with the salt, sugar, brown sugar, 2 tablespoons seasoning blend, and bay leaf. Bring to a boil then remove from heat. Allow to cool, then pour into a large container or bowl filled with ice.
  • When the mix is cold, submerge turkey in the brine. Cover the container and brine in the refrigerator for 4 to 6 hours, more if you have time.
  • Preheat oven to 400° F
  • Mix the dry rub ingredients. Remove the turkey legs from the brine and rinse them under cold water. Pat them dry. Rub the dry rub all over the turkey legs, getting under the skin when you can.
  • Oven-Roasted Method
  • Roast on a baking sheet in the oven for 20 minutes, then reduce the heat to 300 and roast for another 15 minutes, or until turkey is cooked through. (Update: larger legs will require longer cooking time.)
  • Remove them from oven and wrap the bottom of the legs with aluminum foil for serving.
  • Grilling Method
  • Place turkey legs on a preheated grill over a medium-hot fire.
  • Grill, covered for about 30 to 45 minutes or until nearly done.
  • Turn occasionally.
Serves:
Nutrition + Show
Rating:
Print This Recipe

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