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Ultimate Brine for Turkey

Brining a turkey results in an incredibly moist and juicy (not “watery”) bird every time.

1 1/2 cups, KOSHER salt (not regular, use Kosher)

1 1/4 cups, brown sugar

10 whole cloves

3 teaspoons, black peppercorns

1 1/2 gallons (6 quarts) apple juice or cider (non-alcoholic)

The peel from one orange or one tangerine (colored part only – not white pith) {I used two}

Optional: 3 teaspoons, dried thyme and/or 3 teaspoons, dried sage

Combine all ingredients in a non-reactive pot, bring mixture to a boil, lower heat and simmer for 15-20 minutes (partly covered). Allow brine to cool completely.

Rinse turkey under cool running water, inside and out (remove giblets from body cavity – but reserve them, if desired, for giblet gravy).

Pat turkey dry with paper towels, then immerse turkey in cooled brine. * Turkey should be COMPLETELY submerged in liquid (place a plate on top of the bird if necessary to keep it covered with the liquid).

Cover the pot and refrigerate for at least 8-10 hours, up to 24 hours.

Remove turkey, rinse, pat dry, and roast as usual.

Let the roast sit at room temperature for at least 1/2 an hour prior to carving.

Note: *Be sure that the container for the turkey in brine is non-reactive: use enamel, glass, crockery, stainless steel, even a plastic bucket – never cast iron or aluminum. The pot should be just large enough to contain the turkey (so the brine will be sufficient to cover the bird).

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