Turkey - brining

Brining is a good way to make a juicy turkey. I personally like to inject saturated salt-milk solutions into the meat, but brining is a classic/proven method of adding flavor and juciness. Here are some tips on brining your bird:
  • 1 turkey, about 12 pounds

The brine:

  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 1/2 to 1 3/4 cups kosher salt
  • 2 1/2 gallons cold water

(the ingredients below are optional, but add a nice touch)

  • 2 bay leaves, torn into pieces
  • 1 bunch fresh thyme
  • 1 head of garlic, cloves separated and peeled
  • 5 whole allspice berries, crushed

To prepare the brine:

  • Remove giblet bag from turkey, along with any extra internal fat and pin feathers.
  • Rinse well under cold tap water.
  • Combine sugar, salt and 3-4 quarts of the cold water in a large bowl. Stir until sugar and salt dissolve. Add remaining brine ingredients except for the remaining 1 1/2 gallons water.
  • Use a special brining bag or double-bag two heavy-duty, unscented trash bags and put them in an ice chest that is large enough to hold the turkey.
  • *you can also use a large stockpot if it fits - just keep this in the fridge
  • Place turkey in bags, pour in brine and remaining 1 1/2 gallons water - there should be enough liquid to completely cover the bird.
  • Press out air in bags; tightly close each bag separately.
  • Keep turkey cold with bags of ice, which will also help keep it submerged in the brine.
  • Brine for 12-24 hours.

2 comments:

jackslao said...

Hey Tom, did you put the note for the crushed juniper berries?

tomkim said...

oops, cut/paste from gracewiki. Theres isn't a note. I'll take it out. Only salt and sugar are really necessary