- Peanut oil (about 3 gal.)
- 1 (12- to 14-lb.) whole fresh or frozen turkey, thawed
- 2 tablespoons kosher salt
- 2 teaspoons freshly ground black pepper
- 1 (1-lb.) package thick pepper bacon
How to Make It
Pour oil into a deep propane turkey fryer 10 to 12 inches from top; heat to 350° over a medium-low flame according to manufacturer's instructions (about 45 minutes).
Meanwhile, remove giblets and neck from turkey; pat turkey dry. Stir together salt and pepper. Sprinkle 1 Tbsp. salt mixture inside cavity; rub into cavity. Sprinkle outside of turkey with remaining salt mixture; rub into skin. Let turkey stand at room temperature 30 minutes.
Using long-handled tongs, carefully lower bacon, 1 slice at a time, into hot oil. Fry 1 to 2 minutes or until bacon is brown and crisp. Drain bacon on a paper towel-lined baking sheet; reserve bacon for another use.
Place turkey on fryer rod. Carefully lower turkey into hot oil with rod attachment. Fry 35 to 45 minutes or until a meat thermometer inserted in thickest portion of turkey thigh registers 165° (about 3 minutes per pound plus an additional 5 minutes). Keep oil temperature between 325° and 345°. Remove turkey from oil; drain and let stand 30 minutes before carving.
Note: We tested with LouAna Peanut Oil.
Nashville Hot Turkey: Prepare recipe as directed, reserving 1 cup frying oil from fryer. Stir together 1/4 cup ground red pepper, 1 Tbsp. dark brown sugar, 1 tsp. paprika, and 1/2 tsp. garlic powder in a medium saucepan. Carefully whisk in reserved 1 cup frying oil, and cook over low heat, stirring constantly, 5 minutes. Brush mixture over turkey, and serve immediately. Hands-on 25 min.; Total 2 hours, 20 min.