Saturday, June 22, 2024

FOOD FOR THE SOUL – Game day grilled turkey drumsticks

November 17, 2011 by  
Filed under Food

Most people will serve chicken for tailgates, but you know we like to shake it up a bit, so we serve turkey legs—or “Fred Flintstone bones,” as I like to call them.

To give ours a kick, we let them marinate overnight in buttermilk, hot sauce, lemon, onion, and garlic. Then we take them out the next day, let the excess drip off, brush on the olive oil, and throw them on the grill. Folks will be asking for these so fast, you may never get to your business with the glaze.


– 2 cups buttermilk
– 2 tablespoons hot sauce, preferably Tabasco
– Juice of 1 lemon
– 1 onion, sliced
– 4 cloves garlic, smashed and peeled
– 8 turkey drumsticks (14 to 16 ounces each; ask your butcher for them)
– Olive oil, for drumsticks and grill
– Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
– 1 recipe Game- day glaze (recipe follows)

The night before the game, prepare the marinade: Whisk together the buttermilk, hot sauce, and lemon juice, and stir in the onion and garlic. Put the turkey legs in a large casserole dish, and pour the marinade over them. (You can also divide the drumsticks and the marinade between two large zip- top bags.) Cover with plastic wrap, and place in the refrigerator overnight.

On game day, preheat your grill to medium heat.

Remove the turkey legs from the marinade, and allow the extra to drip off . Brush the turkey legs with olive oil, and season with salt and pepper. Rub the grill grates with oil, using a clean tea towel or a crumpled- up paper towel. Grill the turkey drumsticks, turning to cook on all sides, for about 15 minutes, until the skin is crisp and golden.
Cover the grill, and continue cooking for another 25 minutes, rotating occasionally to prevent the legs from burning. Brush with the game- day glaze, and cook, turning often, for 10 more minutes.


The great thing about this glaze is that it can be used for any grilled meat. You can brush it onto pork chops, chicken, ribs—anything you feel like grilling on game day! MAKES ABOUT 1⁄2 CUP

– 2 tablespoons butter
– 1⁄2 small onion, minced
– 1⁄4 cup apple- cider vinegar
– 1⁄4 cup molasses
– 2 tablespoons ketchup
– 1 tablespoon yellow mustard
– 1⁄2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
– Dash of Worcestershire sauce
– Dash of hot sauce, preferably Tabasco
– Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

Melt the butter in a medium saute pan over medium heat. Add the onion, and saute until soft, about 3 minutes. Stir in the vinegar, molasses, ketchup, mustard, cayenne, Worcestershire, and hot sauce. Season with salt and pepper. Simmer over medium heat for 10 minutes, so all the flavors can marry.

Excerpted from THE NEELYS’ CELEBRATION COOKBOOK by Pat and Gina Neely. Copyright © 2011 by Pat Neely and Gina Neely. Excerpted by permission of Knopf, a division of Random House. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.


One Response to “FOOD FOR THE SOUL – Game day grilled turkey drumsticks”
  1. The recipe here described is awesome and one can try it.

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