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Thread: brine the turkey?

  1. #1
    Junior Member pinot's Avatar
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    Goodmorning everybody from white France!

    It's been snowing a lot and the whole western of Europe has troubles because of it. No trains, planes are delayed or not leaving and the roads are terrible. The countries are out of salt to put on the roads.....

    I have a question concerning preparing the turkey. I found a recipe that says that you'll have to dunck the turkey into brine for 6 hours or so. It would give you a more crispy skin...
    Are there any members that prepare it like this?
    I am a bit reluctant to do this. I use to put bacon all over the turkey.
    My children and grandchildren are comming (8 hrs drive) from Holland to France to spent New Years Eve with us.
    Today also the Grace frame was delivered so after the children have left we will start to build the frame.....
    It's so exciting! and I think we'll need two days to achieve it.
    Thanks everybody! Gerry

  2. #2
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    I've never heard of "turkey dunking" but then I'm a very simple cook...but I have basted often with butter and it turned out very crispy. I've even added different spices to the butter to enhance the taste

  3. #3
    Senior Member gypsyquilter's Avatar
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    Hello there,

    Brining doesn't help crisp the skin, in my opiion, it odes help make a moister turkey. However, it is not necessary.

    I usually just season the turkey with salt and pepper, and then give it a good massage with butter. Then roast it - uncovered all the way.
    Oh yes, of course I stuff it as well.

    in the oven he goes, I baste him occasionally, and then enjoy the lovely roast turkey aroma wafting through the house.


    enjoy!

  4. #4
    Senior Member Sewze's Avatar
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    I do 'brine' the turkey. It does help to keep the moisture in the bird. Though, I don't do it except for 2-3 hrs.. The way I do the brining process is as follows: (you need a deep vessel for the brining, so I clean and disinfect my sink and rinse it thoroughly)~ then, first make sure the bird is clean inside and out with no 'pin feathers' or striny parts and then rinse inside and outside; liberally pour salt into the cavities and onto the outside and rub it in; then turn the cold water on and try to cover the bird with the water and let sit in the water for whatever length of time you wish. If you can't cover the bird with the water then turn it over every 1/2 hr. After the brining time has finished, I rinse the bird very thoroughly inside and out many times, each time in fresh water. Pat dry and proceed with your normal way of cooking the bird.

  5. #5
    Super Member feline fanatic's Avatar
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    I always brine my bird. It makes for the moistest most tender turkey you have ever sunk your teeth into. Here is my favorite brine recipe. I got it off of cookinglight.com

    Here is what they say about it....

    "Brining makes for a juicier bird, and the subtle flavors of the brine soak into the turkey. Kosher salt works well for the brine because it dissolves more easily than table salt. If you have time and refrigerator space, the brining procedure is worthwhile. If not, the turkey will still be quite good."

    Here is the brine recipe:
    Ingredients
    BRINE:
    8 quarts water
    3/4 cup kosher salt
    3/4 cup maple syrup
    3 tablespoons black peppercorns
    8 garlic cloves, crushed
    1 lemon, thinly sliced

    Preparation
    To prepare brine, combine first 6 ingredients in a large stockpot, stirring until salt dissolves.
    To prepare turkey, remove and reserve giblets and neck from turkey. Rinse turkey with cold water; pat dry. Trim excess fat. Add turkey to pot, turning to coat. Cover and refrigerate 24 hours, turning occasionally.

    I have made this every year since the recipe first appeared in Cooking Light magazine (probably around 7 years ago). I roast the bird in a slow oven as well. Usually around 325. Try this you won't be disappointed. I also use less salt then the recipe calls for. Between 1/4 and 1/2 cup because I don't have a stock pot big enough to hold the bird and 8 quarts of water. So I use less water and less salt but keep all the other ingredients the same amount. I usually do any where from 12 to 14lb turkey

  6. #6
    Senior Member renee765's Avatar
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    Where have I been? I've never heard of brining a turkey.

  7. #7
    Super Member sweet's Avatar
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    Alton Brown is the brining king. He has really popularized this technique over the past few years.

  8. #8
    Super Member Chele's Avatar
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    Brining is very popular now. Here's another recipe: http://thepioneerwoman.com/cooking/2...-turkey-brine/

    Bon appetit!

  9. #9
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    Well, some of us learn something new everyday.

  10. #10
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    Wow, what a method!! I'm 77 and never heard of this before.
    It does sound neat. I may try that on a big chicken in a few days.

  11. #11
    Power Poster amma's Avatar
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    Brining turkeys helps me get very moist white meat... we also inject them sometimes which makes them even more moist :D:D:D

  12. #12
    Super Member hobo2000's Avatar
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    I brine my turkey and then I smoke it and it is devine.

  13. #13
    Super Member Marlys's Avatar
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    I have never heard of brining a turkey. Let us know how it turns out!
    That's exciting about your Grace frame!

  14. #14
    Super Member amandasgramma's Avatar
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    Last year we ate at a friend's -- she had brined the turkey. That was the first time I'd heard of it. I roasted our Norbest turkey this year and quite frankly, I can't tell the difference. If anything, I think ours tasted better!!!! I pat the turkey dry, rub olive oil over it, then salt it really good. I don't cover it until the skin is browned, then I cover and finish roasting. It has a crispy skin and is moist inside.

  15. #15
    Junior Member pinot's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Marlys
    I have never heard of brining a turkey. Let us know how it turns out!
    That's exciting about your Grace frame!

    Hi Marlys!!! did you get my mail????

  16. #16
    Senior Member QuiltMania's Avatar
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    You can get a really moist turkey without all the work of brining or basting. Put a rack in the bottom of the roaster and cook the turkey with the breast down. About a half hour before the turkey is done, you can turn it over if you want to brown the breast skin. I usually don't flip it though because I carve it in the kitchen and not at the table.

  17. #17
    Super Member sewwhat85's Avatar
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    i have been brineing my bird for many years now. it is the only way i do it now

  18. #18
    Junior Member mardilee's Avatar
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    Hi Pinot,
    If you've not tried brining a turkey, you must do it! Not only is the skin crispy and brown, but the meat is very moist and delicious. Just put 1 cup of salt and 1 cup of sugar in a very large pot. Put the turkey in breast side first. Let it soak overnight. You will be amazed at how delicious your turkey turns out. We did it this Xmas and were delighted with the results.

    Greetings from snowy Michigan (USA)

  19. #19
    Super Member wanderingcreek's Avatar
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    My son brines the turkey now whenever we cook one. He saw a video 2 yrs ago on Food TV with Alton Brown and was hooked. He does his in a large cooler jug and it is in the brine overnight. The tastiest and juciest turkey I have ever had. It also cooks faster because you don't stuff it so I cooked the stuffing separately. Even my dad who is not a big turkey fan said it was really good and my mom loved it. Best of all the leftovers aren't dry at all at least what there is of them. We had 15 for dinner (6 kids and 9 adults) and served a 16lb turkey, a ham and a prime rib roast!

  20. #20
    Power Poster MadQuilter's Avatar
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    I have brined and my recipe called for the bird to be in the juice for 24 hours. It was very tender.

    The turkey we had Christmas was not brined. I put some aromatics (onion, celery, carrots, mushrooms and a little chicken stock) in the bottom of the roaster (under the rack). I melted some butter and oil seasoned with pepper, paprica, poultry seasoning and brushed that on the turkey. Then I baked it in the roaster at 325 degrees F. I basted it throughout - first with more of the butter - later with the juices from the bottom. It was yummy.

  21. #21
    Super Member quiltinghere's Avatar
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    I defrost my frozen turkey in the sink, in the wrapper, in frequently changed cold water. It is stored overnight in the fridge breast side down.

    In the morning the bird skin is dried off, buttered and salt and peppered. This year I put a cut up onion, celery and peeled orange into the cavity. Dressing was on the side.

    It went into a 375 degree oven for 20-30 minutes to seal the skin and keep the juices in. Then temp was turned down to 325 for the remaining time. Breast was covered if the skin started to look too dried out (about 1/2 way through cooking) Check doneness (?) with thermometer.

    The meat was soooo very moist. I think cold water defrosting makes it so.

  22. #22
    Senior Member luvnquilt's Avatar
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    I tried a brine this year for the first time. I thought the brown meat was a little salty, but the white meat was juicy, so I think it was the recipe I used (couldn't have been my fault;) ). I printed the recipe that Feline Fanatic posted here and will try that recipe next year.

  23. #23
    Junior Member judith ann's Avatar
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    For the last 2 thanksgivings i have dry brined our turkey and they has been the best turkeys I have done in 46 years of marriage.I always wanted a picture perfect turkey.

    You know the beautiful brown that the juice runs from the breast meat when cut!!

    I got it with dry brine.It was moist even when cold.

    I read about it here.
    http://www.latimes.com/theguide/holi...ok18-2009nov18,0,4954438.story

    Try it. I will never cook a turkey any other way.
    judy j
    http://hardincountykeepsakes.blogspot.com/
    http://classicclothdolls.blogspot.com/

  24. #24
    Super Member feline fanatic's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by quiltinghere
    I defrost my frozen turkey in the sink, in the wrapper, in frequently changed cold water. It is stored overnight in the fridge breast side down.

    In the morning the bird skin is dried off, buttered and salt and peppered. This year I put a cut up onion, celery and peeled orange into the cavity. Dressing was on the side.

    It went into a 375 degree oven for 20-30 minutes to seal the skin and keep the juices in. Then temp was turned down to 325 for the remaining time. Breast was covered if the skin started to look too dried out (about 1/2 way through cooking) Check doneness (?) with thermometer.

    The meat was soooo very moist. I think cold water defrosting makes it so.
    Actually most frozen birds are already pre-brined. If the package says "May contain up to xx% added moisture" or something like that it was soaked in a saline solution as part of the processing.

  25. #25
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    You can do it, but I wouldn't bother. I made the best turkey I've ever made this year, and it required NO BASTING.

    I took a cube of butter (1/4 lb.) and let it sit out over night so it was very soft. Then I added 1 tablespoon of fresh thyme, and 1 tablespoon of lemon zest and mushed it all together. Then I loosened the skin on the turkey and smeared the butter under the skin all over the turkey. (It helps to use a spoon. Spoon up a glob of butter and slide it under the skin. Use your fingers on TOP of the skin to slide the butter off the spoon, then spread it with your fingers on TOP. Otherwise, the butter just sticks to your hands and it's hard to get it onto the turkey.) Get as much of the butter under the skin as possible. Use whatever is left and smear it over the outside of the bird. The skin will be nice and crisp. The turkey will be dripping with moisture. You won't have to baste, and your turkey will get done faster because you won't need to open the oven door.

    I learned this from Ina Garten, the Barefoot Contessa. Really. Try it! It tasted so good, and it was so easy.

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