Learn how to brine a turkey the right way and then expand of that to add flavors that will make this year's feast outstanding. Kick it up a few notches with these easy to follow step by step instructions.
enough ice and water to cover the bird in the bag.
Optional / To Taste Ingredients
2quartsapple cider or juicesubstitute for an equal amount of water
6slices fresh gingeror 2 teaspoons powder
3orangescut in quarters
Combine all of the above ingredients you are using a stockpot but exclude any fresh fruit. Boil 10 minutes then cool.
Clean and place the turkey in the brining container (I love big plastic bags, the Ziplocs are great). Add the cooled brine, fresh fruit if using, and enough water/ice to cover the turkey. Use a large pan to help support the brining bag. It will help you handle the very heavy bag better.
Seal and refrigerate for 12-24 hours. The bird MUST be kept under 40 degrees Fahrenheit for safety. Please see https://www.101cookingfortwo.com/thanksgiving-food-safety-and-food-help/ for more tips.
Be SURE to rinse the bird inside and out when removed from the brine. Pat dry and proceed with the cooking. Be very careful and clean up the area after rinsing. See https://www.101cookingfortwo.com/chicken-rinse-not-rinse/
The ratio of 1 gallon of fluid to about 3/4 cup of kosher salt is a good basic ratio for a wet brining a turkey.
When ever kosher salt is called for it will mean Diamond Crystal or the equivalent of other salts. 1 teaspoon table salt = 1 1/4 teaspoon Morton kosher salt = 2 teaspoons Diamond Crystal kosher salt.
All the other ingredients are for taste.
Be sure to use a food-safe bag, not a garbage bag.
Brine for 12-24 hours.
The salt need to be rinsed off after a brine before cooking. This is a food safety issue so let's be careful.
Do not add any more salt to the turkey.
This recipe is a 2-gallon recipe and is good for 12-20 pounds. You can adjust from there.
Nutrition is for 8 oz of white meat with 200 mg of sodium added per 4 oz. which is an estimate of sodium transfer to the turkey. It may or may not be accurate.
If you have sodium concerns, brining is not for you.
Final Tip: NEVER BRINE AN INJECTED OR PREVIOUSLY BRINED TURKEY- and somebody will still do it.
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