Thanksgiving upgrade: 8 turkey-cooking gadgets

The perennial Battle of the Dry Turkey begins in less than 48 hours, and this year you're going to emerge victorious. But if you're not talented in the culinary arts, or downright lucky, you'll need a little help from some clever technology to win this age-old war. That's why we put together this list of 8 essential examples of turkey tech, assisting you in your annual demonstration of cooking prowess.

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1. Masterbuilt Butterball Indoor Electric Turkey Fryer
If you don't mind your house smelling like a Kentucky Fried Chicken shack until long past Black Friday, plop your turkey in this $148 Indoor Electric Turkey Fryer, frying it up country style. It's supposed to seal in all those juices, while adding some special grease of its own at the same time. Maybe this spacious vat, capable of accommodating a 14-pound turkey, will make the stuff moistly palatable.

2. NuWave Oven Pro
The NuWave Oven Pro attacks that turkey with a triple threat: conduction, convection and infrared. It works so well, it's said to cook that hunk of meat in two hours flat. We're gripped by the fantasy of magic cooking, but quickly turn skeptical when the price of such an appliance is quoted in three payments of $39.99 plus shipping and handling. For the mathematically challenged, that's three pennies shy of $120.

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3. Turkey Cannon
With this weaponized name for a turkey cooker, you'd think people hated both white meat and dark. Maybe they really do. Like it or not, this Turkey Cannon is an ingenious idea, propping up the turkey to enhance heat circulation, and then filling that hollow tube that's propping it up with your favorite beverage. That'll moisten the turkey's interior with steamy beer, wine, soda, water, or whatever else you feel like putting in there.

4. Deep Fried Turkey Thermometer
Deep frying a turkey is indeed a science, and requires sophisticated paraphernalia like this deep fried turkey thermometer. It has a nice long probe to get into the center of that turkey, and because deep frying anything that large might be potentially explosive (or at least, flammable), you can stand 150 feet away while you wirelessly monitor its temperature. We like the idea of remote thermometer, and this one's on sale, now $39.95.

5. All Clad Turkey Lifters
If you have a big turkey, you're going to have to do some heavy lifting when it's time to take it out of that roasting pan and put it on the platter. You'll heft the festive fowl in style with these pitchfork-like All Clad turkey lifters, $30 for a set of two. You'll impress your relatives, too, because if they know high-end cooking utensils, they'll recognize that unmistakable All Clad look and name. Or if you're less formal and not status-conscious, just dump the turkey out in the sink, onto a waiting platter and save yourself 30 bucks. These might also come in handy if you're planning to turn your turkey upside-down while it's cooking, resulting in a more moist, albeit ugly finished product.

6. Turkey Frying Safety System
Deep frying a turkey needs a safety system? Now we're starting to get worried. If you're smart, you don't want to hold a 14-pound turkey over a vat of hot oil and just let go of it, kerplunking up the searing liquid with a deadly splash that can turn into a conflagration. No, a fire suit isn't necessary — this $50 turkey frying safety system attaches to any deep fryer, and lets you lower the turkey in manageable increments, and then you can easily hold it up to drain once it's done.

7. Pop-up Flag Thermometer
Nobody wants an underdone or overdone turkey, and this clever Pop-up Thermometer is here to help. The red one in the picture above is specifically for turkey and chicken, clearly indicating when the interior of the meat has reached that super-safe, bacteria-free 180°F. There are also pop-ups for fish, whose ideal temperature is 145°F, beef, at 160°, and lamb/pork at 170°. They're cheap, too, ten for $4.

8. Dual Baster/Injector
Turkey doesn't have to be dry — not if you baste it inside and out with this Dual Baster/Injector. One of its attachments is for injecting that special marinade (try using brine for salty goodness) of yours into the turkey, and the other gives the bird a shower of moisture. It's like a bird bath for your turkey. That ought to do it.

Special Bonus: Turkey Calculator
Here's one for you, first-timers: it's a turkey calculator website. Great if you're wondering how long to cook a turkey, how long it takes to thaw — anything you need to know about turkeys and the time it takes to prepare them — you just enter the turkey's weight and you'll have all the info you need right there in front of you. You can thank us later.

Have a happy Thanksgiving, dear readers, and remember everything you have to be thankful for.