In this recipe the amount of stuffing is minimal and the cook time is relatively short – so the stuffing does not remain in the unsafe cooking zone long enough to pose a problem.
Stuffing in a turkey, chicken, goose or any whole bird is not something I recommend. During cooking the stuffing can remain at a ‘warm’ temperature too long and that is an opportunity for bacteria to grow and is just unsafe. This recipe solves that problem without having to entirely skip the awesomeness that I love so much: stuffing.
Sage and Turkey are such a natural pairing and CB's EZ Boneless Turkey Thighs stuffed with Sage Dressing are a wonderful addition to your grilling routine.
- 1 turkey thigh - bone removed, skin on, rinse
- ¼ cup of your favorite bread sage dressing
- Salt & pepper to taste
- Start by removing the bone from a larger turkey thigh. A sharp knife will do the trick, and use the sharpened tip to cut around and remove the bone from the 'meat' side, not the skin side.
- Be sure to trim away any bone or cartilage bits from the meat and excessive fat. OR have your butcher or meat counter person do it for you!
- Once the thigh bone is removed - spread the meat out and inspect for any bits of bone or cartilage, remove them and season the meat with a pinch of good salt and freshly ground black pepper. Resist the urge to over season!
- Season the turkey flesh with a pinch of good salt - I use sea salt, but you could use one of the flavored salts as well and a twist or two of freshly ground black pepper.
- Use your favorite sage bread stuffing recipe (you only need a cup for each turkey thigh) so you may want to improvise with a simple recipe or even (gasp!) one from a box!
- Place a handful (about 1/4 cup) in the center of the open thigh and wrap the meat around it.
- Use kitchen twine (100% cotton string) or a butcher's net to hold the stuffed thigh together.
- Season the outside of the tied roast with salt, pepper and spritz of canola oil.
- Preheat the smoker or your grill set up for indirect heat with smoker box. I use my standard mix of 1 part each Cherry, Apple & Mesquite dry wood chips.
- Place wrapped stuffed turkey thigh on grate or rack and smoke-roast at about 250-275°F with smoke for about 45 minutes or sooner, when the outside of the meat has achieved color from the smoke.
- Increase heat and finish at 350°F degrees until the internal temperature reads 165°F degrees when a thermometer probe is inserted into the stuffing.
- When a thermometer is placed in the roast, the probe in the center of the stuffing should read 165°F degrees and the roast is done.
NOTE: Depending upon the cooker you use, the consistency of temperature during the cook and the temperature you choose to cook this dish.