Chef Rob Rainford

Celebrity Chef

& Author of Born to Grill:
Over 100 Recipes from My Backyard to Yours.

Grilled Rolled Turkey Legs

Some days you just sit and stare at the barbecue and you say to yourself what else can I cook on the grill? Well, with this menu, you’ve caught me in one of those “what else” moments. Although most people only cook turkey at Thanksgiving and Christmas, my rolled turkey recipe will have you thinking about it all year round, like I do.

4 turkey legs, deboned (see sidebar)
2 slices white bread, crusts removed
1⁄4 cup (60 mL) milk
8 oz (250 g) ground veal
2 shallots, finely chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 Tbsp (30 mL) Cognac
1 Tbsp (15 mL) finely chopped fresh parsley
1 Tbsp (15 mL) olive oil
1 egg yolk
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste


The Rainford Method
1. Lay a sheet of plastic wrap out on a clean work surface, top with a turkey leg and a second sheet of plastic wrap. Pound the turkey with a kitchen mallet or heavy-bottom pot until the surface area is 25 to 35% larger than its original size. Repeat with the remaining turkey legs.
2. Place the bread in a shallow dish and pour over the milk. Let soak until the bread can be mashed into a paste.
3. Gently mix together the veal, shallots, garlic, Cognac, parsley and olive oil. Add the bread paste, egg yolk and salt and pepper to taste.
4. For each turkey leg, cut six to eight 6-inch (15 cm) lengths of butcher’s twine. Lay the pieces of butcher’s twine 2 nches (5 cm) apart on a cutting board.
5. Lay a turkey leg over the butcher’s twine. Season with salt and pepper. Spread onequarter of the stuffing evenly over the turkey leg and roll into a cylinder. Secure the turkey leg by tying the twine around it, trimming any excess twine. epeat with remaining legs. Refrigerate until the grill is heated.
6. Fire up your charcoal grill and prep the grill for cooking over indirect heat. You need a medium-high temperature of round 350°F (180°C) to grill the turkey. For gas grills, preheat the grill to medium-high then turn off one burner to achieve indirect heat.
7. Sear the turkey legs by placing them on the hot side of the grill. Cook for 5 minutes per side or until well marked. Move the turkey legs to the cooler part of the grill. Close the lid and cook for 20 to 30 minutes or until the internal temperature reaches 170°F (76°C).
8. Remove from the grill and let rest for 10 minutes before carving.

Makes 8 servings

How to Debone a Turkey Leg:
1. Lay turkey leg, skin side down, on a clean cutting board.
2. Using a very sharp boning knife, start at the bottom of the leg and run it gently along the center of the leg, following the bone up to the thigh.
3. Ease your knife under the bone. This will loosen it, and with a little finesse, the bone will come right out.
4. After the bone is out, remove any grizzle or tendons that are left behind.
5. When all else fails, have your butcher do it for you!

Get the Book!

See more recipes from Rob in his latest book Rob Rainford’s Born to Grill: Over 100 Recipes from My Backyard to Yours.

To order an autographed copy of the book please email

About the Book:

Chef Rob Rainford takes grilling to a whole new level–with over 100 recipes and 20 complete menus, all designed for your backyard barbeque.

For Rob, grilling is about entertaining. It’s about gathering friends and family together and spending time cooking and eating outdoors. It’s also about pushing the boundaries of what you think you can do on the grill. Born to Grill takes you where no other barbecue book has gone before …

– 20 international menus, suitable for both charcoal and gas grilling
– Over 100 diverse recipes designed to mix and match
– Unique flavors and dishes from around the world
– Great for novices and grill masters alike

Born to Grill includes advice on the tools and equipment you’ll need to grill like a pro. It also unveils the Rainford Method–a set of techniques designed to take your barbecuing to the next level. Born to Grill gives you all you need to master your grill, embrace the outdoor cooking experience and wow your friends and family with delicious dishes from around the globe–all in your own backyard.