Brining the turkey

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Poverty Pete
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2004/11/22 20:39:14 (permalink)

Brining the turkey

Anybody have any good recipes? I need to brine a 16 pounder Wednesday night before deep-frying it Turkey Day.
#1

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    Sundancer7
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    RE: Brining the turkey 2004/11/22 21:07:30 (permalink)
    Poverty, here is what I do:

    1 1/2 Cups Salt
    1 1/2 Cups Sugar
    1 1/2 Gallons water

    Let it soak no more than 5 hours.

    Paul E. Smith
    Knoxville, TN
    #2
    GordonW
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    RE: Brining the turkey 2004/11/22 22:25:11 (permalink)
    Sundander7's works for me. There are others, but whatever. It's the basic chemistry. Dry; stuff, or otherwise; cook; enjoy.
    #3
    SOS
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    RE: Brining the turkey 2004/11/22 22:29:08 (permalink)
    I heard a terrible rumor that the drippings from a brined turkey are too salty for gravy. Is it true?! What a dilemma -- I just got a new brining bucket!
    #4
    Lucky Bishop
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    RE: Brining the turkey 2004/11/23 02:40:09 (permalink)
    I've brined turkeys for the last three Thanksgivings, and the drippings are by no means too salty for gravy.
    #5
    carlton pierre
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    RE: Brining the turkey 2004/11/23 02:53:21 (permalink)
    What I hear you guys talking sounds like a common occurance, yet I do not know what brining a turkey is all about, and I have made turkeys for years. What is it, and why does one do it?
    #6
    Sundancer7
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    RE: Brining the turkey 2004/11/23 03:16:37 (permalink)
    Here you go Carlton:

    http://bbq.about.com/cs/turkey/a/aa110103a.htm

    Paul E. Smith
    Knoxville, TN
    #7
    carlton pierre
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    RE: Brining the turkey 2004/11/23 09:43:51 (permalink)
    It seems that self basting turkeys do not need this procedure? I've never done it, but maybe that's why what I have heard is "the turkey seems dry". Could be. Comments? Thanks, Paul, for the link.
    #8
    Lucky Bishop
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    RE: Brining the turkey 2004/11/23 12:28:53 (permalink)
    Yeah, basically those "self-basting" Butterballs are pre-brined, but in a straight salt solution that doesn't bring any other flavors into the bird. I use Alton Brown's brine from the "Romancing the Bird" episode of Good Eats, and have never had any complaints.
    #9
    Oneiron339
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    RE: Brining the turkey 2004/11/23 13:23:54 (permalink)
    quote:
    Originally posted by Lucky Bishop

    Yeah, basically those "self-basting" Butterballs are pre-brined, but in a straight salt solution that doesn't bring any other flavors into the bird. I use Alton Brown's brine from the "Romancing the Bird" episode of Good Eats, and have never had any complaints.

    Ditto on that. I also stuff the skin layer w/ stuffing and roast that way after brining. Great results after 3 years and no deep-fry oil to catch fire.
    #10
    Jennifer_4
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    RE: Brining the turkey 2004/11/23 13:51:50 (permalink)
    I did the whole brining thing one year and really didn't get much out of it... now deep frying, that's the only way to go!
    #11
    Lucky Bishop
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    RE: Brining the turkey 2004/11/23 15:26:47 (permalink)
    You know, I've had the deep-fried turkey, and I wasn't impressed. By the time you factor in both the oil and the spices, it just doesn't taste like turkey to me anymore. I don't see the point. Brining the turkey is so successful for me that I now brine my roast chickens and pork loins too! It really does make a tremendous difference.

    Basically, this is how I do it (as I said, this is all basically straight from Alton Brown on Good Eats): tomorrow, I'll pick up my bird (a fresh organic 17-pounder from Bread and Circus) and stop by the hardware store on the way home for a paint bucket. It's like four bucks. Bird goes in the fridge, bucket gets scrubbed out with a bleach solution followed by hot soapy water. (It's food-grade plastic, this is just to get rid of any residual hardware store dust.) Then, about 5 p.m. tomorrow, I'll make the base of my brine:

    1 gallon vegetable broth
    1 cup kosher salt
    1/2 cup brown sugar
    1 tablespoon peppercorns
    1/2 tablespoon allspice berries
    1 tablespoon candied ginger
    1 apple, quartered
    1/2 stick cinnamon

    Bring it all to a boil, kill the heat, cool to room temp, then refrigerate.

    Tomorrow night around midnight, I'll unpackage and rinse the turkey and remove the innards packet, and add it to the bucket with a gallon of water and ice and the brine. Because I live in Boston, I just stick this out in the mudroom with the probe from my thermometer buried in there to make sure it never gets above 40 degrees. (I'd stick it out on the back steps, but we get a lot of urban wildlife and it might not be there in the morning.)

    About 8 a.m. on The Day, I'll pull the bird, rinse it off to remove the excess brine, pat it dry with paper towels and return it to the mudroom (making sure it's still under 40 degrees out there and none of the cats are in there) to dry for a couple hours. This helps crisp the skin a bit more. Around 11 a.m., I'll prepare the stuffing, bring in the bird, stuff and otherwise prep the bird (including a rubdown with canola oil and the creation of a triangle of heavy foil to cover the breast) and throw it into a 500 degree oven for about 40 minutes. Then I'll lower the heat to 350, insert the probe thermometer into the deepest part of the breast, put the triangle of foil over the breast, and cook the whole thing until the thermometer reads 161 degrees and an instant-read thermometer in the middle of the stuffing reads at least 155. (I usually nuke my stuffing for about 10 minutes before I put it in the bird to help make sure it gets properly up to temp.) While the bird rests, you defat the drippings and put together a nice gravy and then you're done.
    #12
    Pogo
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    RE: Brining the turkey 2004/11/23 15:52:15 (permalink)
    I have to second Lucky Bishop's opinion.

    I am so burnt out on fried turkey that last year I followed Alton Brown's recipe/directions for brined turkey. It was without a doubt the best turkey I have ever fixed.
    #13
    Rick F.
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    RE: Brining the turkey 2004/11/23 16:44:58 (permalink)
    I just picked up a Kosher bird to avoid brining it myself, but if I can ever find a fresh and untreated bird I'll try Brown's recipe. If you can get to Cook's Illustrated's web site (http://www.cooksillustrated.com/tastinghome.asp), they compare bird types and discuss brining. I don't know if it's kosher (so to speak), but I downloaded a couple of files to use later.
    #14
    jvsmom
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    RE: Brining the turkey 2004/11/23 18:51:24 (permalink)
    Someone posted a link here last year to directions for brining a turkey. I tried it then with a pretty basic recipe, and couldn't believe how moist the turkey was. This year, I did it again, using the recipe for "The Ultimate Brine" from that same website. My 20-lb. turkey is brining right now in a plastic bag inside a big cooler with ice all around it. The brine consists of apple cider, kosher salt, brown sugar, cloves, and peppercorns. (It's supposed to have orange peel, too, but I forgot that. Oh well. Next year). The plan is to leave it in there, maybe turn it a couple of times, for 24 hours, then take it out tomorrow night and let it sit in the fridge until Thursday morning, when I roast it. Hopefully, the meat will be moist and the skin will be brown and crispy.
    #15
    EdSails
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    RE: Brining the turkey 2004/11/24 15:09:54 (permalink)
    This is the third year I'm following this recipe for brine. Everybody demands it-----they now say my turkeys are the best! My only changes are adding some herbes de provence to the brine (you could also just add some thyme and sage). My turkey is brining at this very moment!

    http://www.melindalee.com/recipearchive.html?action=124&item_id=125
    #16
    EdSails
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    RE: Brining the turkey 2004/11/24 15:12:15 (permalink)
    jvsmom,
    The website you referred to is the one I posted last year and again just now from Melinda Lee. Glad you liked it!
    #17
    jvsmom
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    RE: Brining the turkey 2004/11/29 23:21:14 (permalink)
    quote:
    Originally posted by EdSails

    jvsmom,
    The website you referred to is the one I posted last year and again just now from Melinda Lee. Glad you liked it!


    Thank you Ed - Rather belatedly, and I'm sorry for not thanking you last year. That site is awesome. Although I didn't get the same results this year that I did last. Don't know if it was because the turkey was bigger, or I used a different container, or just didn't have enough brine, but it didn't come out as moist as last year's.

    But anyway, that's beside the point - thank you again, Ed, that link made my holiday!
    #18
    Poverty Pete
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    RE: Brining the turkey 2004/11/30 00:30:33 (permalink)
    Just a quick wrap-up, I fried two turkeys on Thanksgiving Day...a 16 and a 10 pounder. The larger was brined in salt and brown sugar. The little one was injected with Italian dressing and left overnight. I'm sure timing had something to do with it, but the smaller bird was better. With a 10 pounder, it was easier to get the inside done without drying out the outer portions.
    #19
    Charlie1
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    RE: Brining the turkey 2004/12/02 16:15:16 (permalink)
    I used Alton's recipe for brining the turkey this year. I had never before brined a trukey at all and didn't understand the process.
    I have to say that was the most delicious turkey I have ever tasted, let alone made myself.
    #20
    Foodbme
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    RE: Brining the turkey 2010/11/09 14:40:00 (permalink)
     I've deep fried many turkeys and always injected them with Cajun Injector Seasonings.  Has anyone deep fried a Brined Turkey with good results? Does the brine get into the oil and cause any " Oil & Water don't mix" Problems?
    #21
    bdtn
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    RE: Brining the turkey 2010/11/09 15:53:49 (permalink)
    i add old bay spice to my brine and hot sauce about a half cup of old bay and 2-3 table spoons of habanero sauce.
    pickling spice works good too.
    #22
    Foodbme
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    RE: Brining the turkey 2010/11/09 17:35:29 (permalink)
    I just saw a Jar of Brining Seasoning Mix at our Fry's store. Picked it up and read the ingredients - It looked tempting until I read the Price Tag! About $7.00 fo a pint jar! Promptly set it back down!. Too dazed to even look at the brand name. I'll look again and post the brand name on here for anyone interested. I've noticed a general big increase in the price of spices on everything. Anyone else notice it as well? 
    post edited by Foodbme - 2010/11/11 18:18:40
    #23
    rjb
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    RE: Brining the turkey 2010/11/09 17:46:10 (permalink)
    Foodbme

     I've deep fried many turkeys and always injected them with Cajun Injector Seasonings.  Has anyone deep fried a Brined Turkey with good results? Does the brine get into the oil and cause any " Oil & Water don't mix" Problems?

    Shouldn't be a problem provided you dry the surface thoroughly before frying (towel off the bird then air dry in front of a fan -- the drier the skin, the crisper it gets).  Excluding the bones, turkey (and other meat) is largely water anyway, so effect of the brining on your frying shouldn't be noticeable if the exterior is dry.
    #24
    Foodbme
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    RE: Brining the turkey 2010/11/10 00:03:26 (permalink)
    EdSails

    This is the third year I'm following this recipe for brine. Everybody demands it-----they now say my turkeys are the best! My only changes are adding some herbes de provence to the brine (you could also just add some thyme and sage). My turkey is brining at this very moment!

    http://www.melindalee.com/recipearchive.html?action=124&item_id=125

    The instructions on that web site are the most thorough & complete I've ever seen for doing a turkey A to Z! THANX!
    #25
    boyardee65
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    RE: Brining the turkey 2010/11/10 14:38:32 (permalink)
     I used to get fresh chickens from my father in law. I brined them in a mixture of:
     
      2 gallons cold water
      1 1/2 cup sea salt
      1 1/2 cup brown sugar
      3 bay leaves
      20 pepper corns
      fresh garlic
     
      I let this soak for about three days, air dry and then cook normally. Always comes out crispy on the outside and moist and tender on the inside. I'm sure that it will work for turkey.
     
      David O.
     
     
    #26
    Foodbme
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    RE: Brining the turkey 2010/11/11 18:20:02 (permalink)
    EDIT to #23 above:
    I was in the store again today and scoped out the jar of Turkey Brine Mix a little closer. The price was $7.49 with a $1.00 off instant coupon = $6.49.
    Here's the scoop on the product:
    http://www.spicehunter.com/products.asp?id=16 
     
    #27
    BelleReve
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    RE: Brining the turkey 2010/11/14 12:18:32 (permalink)
    this might help: http://www.nomenu.com/recipes/Brined Turkey.html
    #28
    BelleReve
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    RE: Brining the turkey 2010/11/14 12:20:38 (permalink)
    sorry, don't know what happened, this guy cooks his turkeys on the grill, but there's a basic brine recipe and directions
    #29
    Curbside Grill
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    RE: Brining the turkey 2010/11/22 07:08:40 (permalink)
    Know people looking for something different. Secret brine. Cannot use an injected frozen Turkey  9% sodium solution. . Sorry. Fresh non salt injected Turkey. We Smoke the Turkey , but you might try other methods.
    1 Quart Boiling Water
    2 C Salt
    1/2 C Sugar
    Add together and mix till blended.
     
    Now let that cool, and prepare the rest of marinade.
    One huge stock pot or Storing bag.
    7 Quarts of water, Cold
    1 can Chipotle in Adobo Sauce, Pureed
    1/4 C Cummin
    2 Tbsp Chili Powder
    1Tbsp Granulated Garlic
    1 tbsp Oregano
    3 Tbsp Paparika
    Pour over Turkey in pot to cover or Bagged  and put in Refrig to marinate for 12-24 Hrs.
    Remove and drain . pat dry and cook.
     
    That is the Basic but we have added more Pepper to the Mix, with no Complaints.
    We like the Hot Hungarian Paparika. Your Call
    Added 3 Minced Habanaros to the brine also for a Chili Head Fest. Could have done more.
    Now this is for an 11-14 LB Turkey
    Your call on everything.
     
     
     
     
    #30
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