Franklin’s Smoked Turkey Breast

I don’t know about you, but I am pretty exhausted from the Thanksgiving holiday. As normal, I spent hours in the kitchen cooking up the feast which included a green bean casserole, creamed corn, gravy, a dry brined turkey, mashed potatoes, dressing/stuffing, and this thing of beauty; Franklin’s smoked turkey breast. My colleague turned me onto this recipe and he swore by it. Whenever someone who cooks gets that excited about something, I figured it was worth a shot, and boy was this one ever delicious. As a matter of fact, many said it was probably their favorite, along with my Thanksgiving sausage stuffing.

This turned out awesome, and as I cannot compare as I’ve never had the honor to get to Austin, Texas to try Franklin’s BBQ, I can tell you that this was fall apart tender with just the right amount of smoke.

Franklin's Smoked Turkey Breast Recipe
Franklin’s Smoked Turkey Breast Recipe

Let’s get started.

Ingredients:

  • 3.5 lb turkey breast
  • 2 whole sticks of butter, unsalted
  • 3 tbsp course cracked black pepper
  • 1 tbsp salt
  • heavy duty aluminum foil
  • your favorite wood chips for smoking (I used cherry)

Start by mixing the salt and pepper in a bowl. remove the skin from the turkey breast and discard it.

Rub the turkey breast with the black pepper and salt, all over all of the sides. Now get your smoker ready. I’ve been using the Smokenator 1000 for some time now, but you could use your grill if you desire. Once the smoker comes to temperature (I shoot for about 250 degrees), add the turkey breast, cover, and let it slowly smoke for about 2.5 hours. Once the turkey is slightly browned, carefully remove it and place it on a plate.

Pull 2 big sheets of aluminum foil off, enough to easily wrap the turkey breast, and top the breast with the two sticks of butter. Cover with the foil, and return back to the smoker, butter side down. Make sure the breast is completely covered and to not have butter dripping down into your smoker! 

How to make Franklin's BBQ smoked turkey breast
How to make Franklin’s BBQ smoked turkey breast

Continue cooking for another 1-2 hours, or until the center of the breast registers around 160 degrees.

When you are ready to serve, carefully remove the foil from the turkey breast, and pull apart with a couple of forks.

This smoked turkey breast was so tender and juicy from cooking in that butter, and it was perfectly seasoned. I served mine on a couple of toasted buns, along with some barbecue sauce and pickles. I will definitely be making this again and again, plus it is perfect to serve during any holiday season. Hope you enjoy!

Franklin's Smoked Turkey Breast
Author: 
Recipe type: Turkey
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 8
 
Ingredients
  • 3.5 lb turkey breast
  • 2 whole sticks of butter, unsalted
  • 3 tbsp course cracked black pepper
  • 1 tbsp salt
  • heavy duty aluminum foil
  • your favorite wood chips for smoking (I used cherry)
Instructions
  1. Start by mixing the salt and pepper in a bowl. remove the skin from the turkey breast and discard it.
  2. Rub the turkey breast with the black pepper and salt, all over all of the sides. Now get your smoker ready. I’ve been using the Smokenator 1000 for some time now, but you could use your grill if you desire. Once the smoker comes to temperature (I shoot for about 250 degrees), add the turkey breast, cover, and let it slowly smoke for about 2.5 hours. Once the turkey is slightly browned, carefully remove it and place it on a plate.
  3. Pull 2 big sheets of aluminum foil off, enough to easily wrap the turkey breast, and top the breast with the two sticks of butter. Cover with the foil, and return back to the smoker, butter side down. Make sure the breast is completely covered and to not have butter dripping down into your smoker!
  4. Continue cooking for another 1-2 hours, or until the center of the breast registers around 160 degrees.
  5. When you are ready to serve, carefully remove the foil from the turkey breast, and pull apart with a couple of forks.

 

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Mango and Peach Habanero Sauce

Last summer, I grew a bunch of habanero chili peppers. I often wonder why I grew these many chilies as they are very, very hot, but then I knew why. It is really because I love using those in Caribbean style recipes. There is something about the habanero that will always have a place in my heart. It’s wicked spicy, but when used properly, and it has this citrus note that I just can’t get enough of. That is probably also why one of my favorite chicken wing sauces is mango habanero. That’s when it occurred to me to come up with a mango and peach habanero sauce. This is unlike the fiery habanero sauce I made five years ago. This one is sweet with just the right amount of heat, that it has you coming back for more.

Mango and Peach Habanero Sauce Recipe
Mango and Peach Habanero Sauce Recipe

This sauce can go on anything, and yes, I slathered my onion rings with this sauce, and due to the sweetness of those onions, it was a perfect sauce.

Let’s get started.

Ingredients:

  • 8 habanero chili peppers (use cooking cloves), seeds and stems removed
  • 1 whole medium onion, quartered
  • 1 whole mango, skin and pit removed, chopped
  • 1 whole peach, skin and pit removed, chopped
  • 1 whole lemon, juiced
  • 2 cups water, more if necessary
  • 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tbsp salt

 

NOTE: Be extremely careful when working with habanero chilies (or any chili for that matter) as the oils will get onto your skin, and if you rub your eye or elsewhere by accident, trust me, you will be feeling it.

This is way too simple, and yields quite a bunch, so it’s nice if you have a chile head in the family to offer up the extra bottle.

Add everything to a sauce pot, bring to medium heat, stir, lightly cover, and cook for about 15 minutes on a gentle simmer. Remove from the heat and let it come to room temperature.

Mango and Peach Habanero Sauce
Mango and Peach Habanero Sauce

Use and immersion blender if you have one, or if not, add everything to a blender, and blend until smooth. Add more water if you want a thinner hot sauce. Store in sealed tight bottles and place into the refrigerator until you are ready to use.

I’ve been squirting this on cooked chicken, as well as using it on top of my morning omelette and I’m impressed everytime it hits my palette! Hope you enjoy!

Mango and Peach Habanero Sauce
Author: 
Recipe type: Hot Sauce
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 3 cups
 
Ingredients
  • 8 habanero chili peppers (use cooking cloves), seeds and stems removed
  • 1 whole medium onion, quartered
  • 1 whole mango, skin and pit removed, chopped
  • 1 whole peach, skin and pit removed, chopped
  • 1 whole lemon, juiced
  • 2 cups water, more if necessary
  • ¼ cup apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tbsp salt
Instructions
  1. This is way too simple, and yields quite a bunch, so it’s nice if you have a chile head in the family to offer up the extra bottle.
  2. Add everything to a sauce pot, bring to medium heat, stir, lightly cover, and cook for about 15 minutes on a gentle simmer. Remove from the heat and let it come to room temperature.
  3. Use and immersion blender if you have one, or if not, add everything to a blender, and blend until smooth. Add more water if you want a thinner hot sauce. Store in sealed tight bottles and place into the refrigerator until you are ready to use.

 

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Barbecue Bacon Wrapped Onion Bomb

Onion bomb you ask? Yes, let me welcome you to an onion bomb. What the heck is it? Essentially an onion that is cored out, stuffed with a spiced ground meat, and well, you could stop there, or take it another step forward and wrap it in slices of bacon, and then smoke it. Yep, that’s an onion bomb, and one that is going to rock your world.

The onion bomb came out of the idea of stuffed peppers, a dish that I grew up eating.  I wanted to create something where maybe, just maybe, I could get my oldest to try. I knew he would devour the exterior bacon, and the interior meat, and my other would devour the onion, but maybe they would try the entire thing. I was correct on my assumptions, and no they did not eat everything together, but at least a dad tries, right?

Barbecue Bacon Onion Bomb Recipe
Barbecue Bacon Onion Bomb Recipe

You can do these on the grill, on your smoker, or in your oven. It’s up to you. I added them on the smoker for a bit of that great smoke flavor, but I’ll let you decide. Your overall goal is to have an internal temperature of 165.

Let’s get started.

Ingredients:

  • 1 large white onion, cored
  • ~ 1/2 lb ground chuck
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp cracked black pepper
  • 1/2 tsp Italian seasoning
  • Few dashes of Maggi (optional)
  • 4 slices of your favorite bacon
  • Your favorite barbecue sauce

Start by coring out most of the onion. You can do this carefully with a pairing knife, or if you have a jalapeno corer, use that as it works really well. Leave a couple of external layers in tact so it holds up well with the meat mixture.

Add the meat to a mixing bowl and add in the salt, pepper, Maggi, and Italian seasoning.

How to make an onion bomb.
How to make an onion bomb.

Mix well, and gently stuff into the onion. Wrap the slices of bacon around the onion, securing each piece with a toothpick. Place the onion on a baking sheet and place onto your smoker (or 325 oven or grill), and smoke for about 20 minutes. Once the smoke is cleared, cook over indirect heat until the bacon is crisp and your internal temperature is 165 degrees.

Brush on the barbecue sauce, and let it continue to cook until it is nice and sticky from the sauce. Brush with more sauce, then remove the toothpicks.

Barbecue Bacon Wrapped Onion Bomb
Barbecue Bacon Wrapped Onion Bomb

Using a serrated knife, slice it in half, or quarters, and get into it. I honestly have to save that when I served this, I left the room for only a couple of minutes, and sure enough it was almost completely devoured by my wife and kids.

You get a great smokey flavor, along with the great barbecue sauce, and no lie, the interior, along with the sweetness of the onion really make this a great dish to serve. I wish I had made another one to be quiet honest with you. If you are looking for something unusual to make, give this one a try. To me it was a real winner. Hope you enjoy!

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Cheesy Corn Casserole

Summer is almost over <sigh>, but with that said, there has been some really, and I mean really good corn this year. We have tried a variety, but there is one batch that my coworker brought in from Fondy’s Farmers Market that was probably hands down the best corn I’ve had in quite some time. The texture was spot on and the sweetness just blew our mind, plus they were some of the larger types of corn I have seen in some time now. With that said, my coworker brought in two large paper bags of corn, loaded to the top and said take what you want. I probably took about 12 or so ears of corn, and this recipe was inspired not only by the corn, but a conversation my colleague and I had about a cheesy corn casserole. His idea sounded so good I was going to go out on a limb and try coming up with my own version.

Cheesy Corn Casserole Recipe
Cheesy Corn Casserole Recipe

Let’s get started.

Ingredients:

  • 2 tbsp all purpose flour
  • 2 tbsp unsalted butter
  • 2 cups of milk
  • 8 oz cream cheese, room temperature
  • 2 cups of cheddar cheese, shredded
  • 4 ears of corn, kernels removed
  • 1 lb thick cut ham, cubed
  • 2 whole banana peppers, seeds removed, chopped
  • 1 head of garlic, roasted, mashed
  • 1/2 tbsp garlic salt
  • 1 1/2 tsp cracked black pepper
  • 1 tomato, diced
  • 1 cup of seasoned bread crumbs

Start by heading a medium sized pot on medium heat. Add in the butter and let it melt until it comes to a bubble. Next, toss in the flour, and stir with a wooden spoon so that all of the butter soaks up the flour. Continue to stir for a couple of minutes to cook out the flour. Don’t let it get too dark, just a light golden, if any color at all. Now add in the milk and continue to stir. Keep stirring until the sauce thickens. This is your standard bechamel sauce.  Once the sauce thickens, add in the cream cheese and cheddar cheese, as well as the garlic salt. Lower the heat, and stir until all the cheese is melted, and you have a smooth consistency.

Cheesy Corn Casserole Ingredients
Cheesy Corn Casserole Ingredients

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.

To a large mixing bowl, add in the corn, the cubed ham, black pepper, banana peppers, roasted garlic, and tomato. Mix to combine everything. Next, pour in the cheese sauce, and continue to stir until everything is nice and coated.

Add the mixture to your casserole dish, top with the bread crumbs. Place into the oven and cook for about 30 minutes, uncovered. The top should be nice and golden brown, and the casserole itself should be a bit bubbly. Carefully remove, and get ready to dig in.

The end result is nothing short of fantastic. You get the sweetness and the pop from the corn, the cheese blend (don’t get me started on how good that is), and the savoriness from the ham. Did I mention the garlic? Good Lord this stuff is great and is perfect for your backyard gathering, plus this one feeds a small army. Comfort all around, even in the summer. Hope you enjoy and hoping everyone has a great rest of your summer!

Cheesy Corn Casserole
Author: 
Recipe type: Casserole
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 10
 
Ingredients
  • 2 tbsp all purpose flour
  • 2 tbsp unsalted butter
  • 2 cups of milk
  • 8 oz cream cheese, room temperature
  • 2 cups of cheddar cheese, shredded
  • 4 ears of corn, kernels removed
  • 1 lb thick cut ham, cubed
  • 2 whole banana peppers, seeds removed, chopped
  • 1 head of garlic, roasted, mashed
  • ½ tbsp garlic salt
  • 1½ tsp cracked black pepper
  • 1 tomato, diced
  • 1 cup of seasoned bread crumbs
Instructions
  1. Start by heading a medium sized pot on medium heat. Add in the butter and let it melt until it comes to a bubble. Next, toss in the flour, and stir with a wooden spoon so that all of the butter soaks up the flour. Continue to stir for a couple of minutes to cook out the flour. Don’t let it get too dark, just a light golden, if any color at all. Now add in the milk and continue to stir. Keep stirring until the sauce thickens. This is your standard bechamel sauce. Once the sauce thickens, add in the cream cheese and cheddar cheese, as well as the garlic salt. Lower the heat, and stir until all the cheese is melted, and you have a smooth consistency.
  2. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.
  3. To a large mixing bowl, add in the corn, the cubed ham, black pepper, banana peppers, roasted garlic, and tomato. Mix to combine everything. Next, pour in the cheese sauce, and continue to stir until everything is nice and coated.
  4. Add the mixture to your casserole dish, top with the bread crumbs. Place into the oven and cook for about 30 minutes, uncovered. The top should be nice and golden brown, and the casserole itself should be a bit bubbly. Carefully remove, and get ready to dig in.

 

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