Brining a Turkey
Brining a Turkey for Thanksgiving (or any day) Isn't as Hard as it Sounds
Soaking a turkey overnight in brine is a surprisingly easy to way to create a moist, juicy and flavorful turkey.
This simple recipe will be enough brine an average sized 10-14 pound turkey.
Let's start by gathering up the supplies we'll need....
- 2.5 gallons water
- 2 carrots
- 2 celery
- 1 onion
- 1/2 tbsp parsley
- 1/2 tbsp thyme
- 3 bay leaves
- 1 orange
- 1 lemon
- 1 cup kosher salt
Also, keep on hand sharp knife, cutting board and a large stock pot.
Step 1: Chop the Vegetables & Fruits
Roughly chop the carrots, celery and onion. You don’t need to peel the carrots because they won’t be eaten after this application, they're just used here for flavor. (If you compost you can add them to your bin later)
Slice the orange and lemon in half.
Step 2: Load up Your Stock Pot for the Brine
Add 2 Â½ gallons of water to a large stock pot. Then add your vegetables to the pot of water.
Thoroughly squeeze lemon juice into pot and then drop the lemon pieces in.
Squeeze the orange into the pot and add the pieces as well.
Add Â½ tbsp each of parsley and thyme.
Next, add the 3 bay leaves.
And finally, add the 1 cup of kosher salt. Substitute note: Use about half if you’re using regular table salt.
Now you’re ready to create your brine.
Step 3: Preparing the Brine for the Turkey
Turn the stove to high heat and bring the brine to a boil, but not let it simmer. Turn it off as soon as it starts to boil and remove it from heat immediately.
Allow the brine to cool completely, which can take several hours. Do NOT place the turkey in warm or hot brine as it will start to cook the turkey.
Once the brine has cooled, use a skimmer or slotted spoon to remove all the fruits and vegetables.
Step 4: Begin the Process of Brining the Turkey
Gently lower your turkey into the brine.
Cover the stock pot and chill overnight, up to about 12 hours. When you’re done, remove the bird, pat dry and start roasting.
Because there is a considerable amount of salt in the turkey already, you may wish to avoid using any ingredients with salt during the roasting process as it become too salty.
Meet the Chef in Our House.....
My husband Brian does 99% of the cooking in our house. And does it well. Yes, I am a lucky girl indeed. And now he blogs about it too: http://www.cookingwithzen.com