Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Turkey En Flambé

'Tis the day before Thanksgiving, so I figured a crazy Turkey Day story is in order:

This year we were running late because I had forgotten a special bottle of wine I wanted to share and we'd gone back home to get it. Dinner was supposed to be served at 4:00 and we finally arrived at 3:30. As we walked down the path to their front door, we were greeted by my sister in law yelling, "Gang way - watch out - coming through" and out of the front door she ran with a pot of heavily smoking artichokes. Little did we know what was in store. As we walked in the kitchen, we noticed on the table a completely uncooked totally raw - turkey. (Remember dinner was supposed to be ready in a half an hour?) "Oh don't worry," they said, "we're barbecuing the turkey and it only takes 45 minutes." Except the barbecue hadn't been started yet.

It seems they were just getting to that when they discovered that the briquettes were wet. So rather than going to the store and getting new ones they decided that they had a solution to getting those wet briquettes to ignite -- gasoline! So, just imagine, if you will, a wooden porch with overhanging pine trees. Yeah. After a dose of gasoline, they were right -- the briquettes did light -- shooting three-foot high flames onto the eves of the wooden house. So they put the lid on the Weber and proceeded to wrap the turkey in aluminum foil. "Don't worry, this is how we had planned on cooking it anyway."

Finally as it was getting dark, they were ready to put the turkey on the grill. Quickly they opened the lid. The column of flame shot up anew and they literally threw the turkey on the grill and slammed the lid down. After a few minutes we saw seriously angry flames shooting out of every air hole in the barbecue. Some were leaking out between the top and bottom of the Weber. The fat in the turkey had reached flash point and it was burning out of control. About 30 minutes (and several glasses of wine) later, it was decided that the turkey was probably done cooking and we should probably take it off the grill. A roof high column of flame shot up as they took off the lid. OK, so how do we get the turkey off the grill with all those flames? Using a fireplace poker, the turkey was pushed of the grill where it landed on the wooden deck, still burning furiously. The fat of the turkey and the foil were one as it kept right on burning.

By now there was talk of calling the fire department. But rather than do that, it was decided that someone needed to "put the turkey (fire) out." Of course, using a fire extinguisher would wreck the turkey (like it wasn't ruined already?) so my father-in-law and my nephews grabbed the first thing at hand -- bathroom sized dixie cups -- and began to "spoosh" the flames out. After a few minutes (and a bit more wine) it was finally out. Now, I don't know who decided it was still edible -- but as was family tradition my father-in-law carved and served that turkey - crispy on the outside and raw on the inside -- and we ate stuffing and burnt artichokes while we enjoyed taking pictures of the inedible bird. -- Karen Frank, Pleasant Hill, CA
Thanks to Holidash  for this, ahem, turkey.


strokeofliving said...

Now that's a Thanksgiving story for the ages. Classic I tell ya.

Hank said...

That's great!

Hope YOUR Thanksgiving meal is much better!

Andrea said...

LOL That's hilarious!

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