1/25/09

Thoughts of Thanksgiving.... in January

A brine of course is simply a salt water mixture you soak your turkey in to plump it and give it great flavor and keep it moist while roasting. What you add to brine is up to you, but always start with a turkey that NOT self-basting nor Kosher as both already have a mixture in them and if you brine it, it will be too salty to eat.
A basic brine has simple needs;

water
salt
sugar
a 5 gallon bucket


To make the brine, mix 2 cups of (table) salt and about 1 cup of sugar in 2 gallons of water. Make sure that the salt and sugar are completely dissolved before adding the seasonings you like but do not use anything that is salt based! No garlic SALT, onion SALT, celery SALT or Seasoned SALT or anything of the sort.

You don't need to add any seasonings to the brine unless you want to. A simple salt/sugar solution is a great basic recipe. However, brines can be spicy with peppers and cayenne, or take on a different flavor with herbs and garlic, or sweet with molasses, honey and brown sugar.

Put your turkey into the bucket, cover completely with the brine solution (make more if you need more to completely cover) and place in a cold place - preferably the refrigerator if you can but in a cooler if you don't have room. Those of us in the upper states know that the garage is perfect in the winter months (unfortunately - ha ha). Brrr!

After at least 12 hours of brining, remove, rinse and roast as usual!
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