Bayou Classic Outdoor Cooking System
MARIETTA -- It's a holiday tradition, a fabulous dinner centered around a glorious, golden turkey, roasted to perfection. But it's not easy to get it golden brown and keep it succulent. Plus it can take four hours and more to cook a 16 pound bird.
Pat Cochran likes to cook but mostly on the grill.
"I do a lot of outdoor cooking and my lovely wife does the indoor cooking," he said diplomatically.
The outdoorsman was eager to help us test a turkey fryer that is supposed to cook a turkey in less than an hour.
"It's a different taste," Pat said. "It's not run-of-the-mill. It's not your baked turkey. It's not a smoked turkey. It's a fried turkey which is an oddity to the south."
The Bayou Classic Outdoor Cooking System promises it has everything you need to fry a turkey. It comes with an outdoor LP gas cooker, a 30 QT. aluminum stockpot, poultry rack, grab hook and thermometer. You will need to provide your own LP tank.
The kit is big enough to cook up to an 18 pound turkey. You can also use it to fry chickens, fish and seafood boils. We paid $70 for it at Bed, Bath and Beyond.
After putting it together, Pat added the peanut oil to the pot and let it heat up.
"We've got more than four gallons of oil here," he said. "The two containers of peanut oil was approximately $60 for the two containers."
Then he and a friend lowered the thawed, seasoned turkey slowly into the boiler. To be safe they have a system where they hold the turkey in the center of a six foot pole because the oil boils and spits out during the process.
Pat warns everyone to be careful when frying over the gas flame.
"If that hot oil came out and hit that flame it would start a fire."
Less than an hour later, Pat's bird was done, moist and delicious.
"They estimate approximately three minutes per pound for birds over 15 pounds, 2 ½ to 3 for birds under 15 pounds," he said.
So is the Bayou Classic Outdoor Cooking System going to be a part of Pat's outdoor arsenal?
"I give it a thumbs up," he said.
If you prefer an electric turkey fryer, we have also tested the Butterball Electric Turkey Fryer.