Holiday Trends: Talking Turkey—With A Southern Accent

Nov 5, 2013

An increasing number of Americans are finding that a holiday tradition long popular in the South gets a warm welcome from family and friends everywhere: a succulent turkey, deepfried in 100 percent peanut oil— the second most popular way to cook the bird.

To stick to the Southern flavor, try using the same oil to turn out hush puppies, fried okra, sweet potato fries, and veggie chips, since the flavors won’t transfer with the oil. Peanut oil can safely be reused three or four times before it needs to be re placed. Just let the oil cool completely after use, strain it, and store in a cool place.

Peanut oil has a high smoke point and slightly nutty flavor and the whole process takes about half the time it does to roast a turkey in the oven.

The oil is also trans fat–free, cholesterol-free, low in saturated fats, and high in unsaturated fats, to benefit heart health. The American Heart Association considers peanuts a heart-healthy food and research suggests that peanut oil can even improve cholesterol levels and prevent chronic diseases such as diabetes and heart disease.

Here’s a recipe to try:

Crispy and Juicy Deep-Fried

  • Turkey 1 whole turkey
  • 1 tablespoon of salt
  • 1 teaspoon of black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon of garlic powder
  • 2 tablespoons of your favorite dry rub
  • 3 to 4 gallons of 100% peanut oil (just enough to cover the turkey)


  1. Wash bird inside and out and allow it to drain.
  2. Rub turkey with the salt, pepper, garlic and dry rub.
  3. Allow turkey to sit at room temperature for 1 hour or until completely thawed and dry.
  4. Preheat peanut oil in an outdoor or countertop turkey fryer to 350˚ F.
  5. Make sure there is no moisture on the skin and carefully lower turkey into hot oil either in a fryer basket or using a sturdy tool inserted into the chest cavity. Submerge the turkey completely.
  6. Fry turkey for 3 minutes per pound plus 5 minutes per bird. Internal temperature should reach 165˚ F.
  7. Remove turkey from the oil and let sit 20 minutes be – fore serving.

Makes 4 servings.