> hey what's for dinner mom?: The Time to Brine is Now

11.23.2010

The Time to Brine is Now

We have our home grown bird harvested, plucked and ready to be cooked, it weighs 23 pounds. Last year our bird was good but a tad dry. This year thinking ahead, not by much but ahead none the less, I decided to brine it. I consulted the official word (twitter) to make sure I still had enough time and to get ideas. Turns out I did indeed have enough time left but I needed to get a move on. You need about 24 hours for 12 pounds of meat. I put it in this morning and I'll pull it tomorrow night, not quite as long as needed but it's better than nothing.


I got the general rule of thumb being 1 cup salt to one gallon water, with 1 cup sugar per gallon optional. Spices, fruits and flavors were all recommended too. I used a cooler we use when  harvesting birds, sterilized of course, to put the turkey and brine in.

Turkey Brine
1 gallon water
1 cup salt
1 cup sugar-more, less or none
herbs-sage and rosemary
lemon-no lemon I used cuties-all I had!
bay leaves

mix the salt and sugar with the water until dissolved
pour over turkey
make enough brine to cover the bird by 1-2 inches
let soak for 24 hours per 12 pounds of bird
pat dry and let sit to air dry before roasting

In the picture below my bird is waiting for more brine, but I wanted to get a shot of it before it was submerged. I used brown sugar for a sweet twist and cutie oranges because I didn't have lemons. I will be turning him over and over in the brine to make sure he is evenly brined.
Happy Brining!

Peace and Love--

8 comments :

  1. Did you use something "extra" in your brine liquid (it looks like the color of tea)? I haven't tried brining yet, but it is ALL the rage.

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  2. yes I used brown sugar-it looks odd in the photo but I was standing in the RAIN! at 4:30 tonight!

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  3. I think it looks great Laura! I'm protesting turkey this year (we eat it far too often at J's mom's and I'm sick of it) so we're doing 2 ducks and a ham. IF I had done a turkey I would have brined it.

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  4. of course you can also brine ducks, chickens and pork!

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  5. Yum! It looks fantastic, Laura, and the cutie oranges will give such a lovely flavor.

    I don't brine because in apartment life, I would have nowhere to put it. But I like the idea of brining!

    My butcher just delivered my turkey and I'm literally terrified of it. Its HUGE! 24.5 pounds. No one knows why I ordered such a big bird ... I'm only feeding 10 people. Ack! LOL

    Happy, Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours!!

    xoxoxoxo

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  6. I have heard so much about brining turkeys but have never tried it myself. Thank you for sharing your experience with it. I bet the brown sugar and oranges gave it a lovely flavor!

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  7. We brined our turkey last year and what a difference it made - nice and tender.

    Hope yours turned out good!

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  8. Ohh duh, you're right! Maybe I'll brine a random chicken to roast sometime in the future to give it a try.

    Thanks for sharing w/ Friday Firsts!

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