Friday, November 23, 2007

Do you brine?

I must admit - a couple of years ago when my husband ran across the fad of turkey brining, I was not amused.

I'm a bit of a germaphobe when it comes to poultry. I know the irrationality comes from a story I was told in school, and has only been heightened by news stories of salmonella. Or whatever. See, I'm not even sure what bacteria it is.. but I'm still a germaphobe. Turkeys are messy.

The first year I placated him. Declared it a pain in the ass, and decided I would never do it again.

Not only do you have a turkey with all that weird bacteria, now you have to get rid of several gallons of water the turkey has been sitting in.

Three years later, I'm still placating him - and I've decided it is totally worth the effort. Even if you think you've never had a dry turkey. It will knock your socks off how moist the bird will come out if you take the time to brine it.

My recommendation - buy a cheap trash can with a lid. Jumbo zip lock bags.

1 cup of sea salt, and 2 cups of brown sugar per gallon of water.
Make sure to dissolve the salt and sugar in boiling water with whatever spices you like.

Let it cool before adding to the rest of the water and turkey. Let it soak for 12 hours or so.

The rest? Magic!


  1. I have always wanted to do a turkey brine. We've been frying for the last couple of years, but this year I just couldnt be bothered. Unlike just dumping turkey water in the backyard, the oil is a PITA to get rid of. The inconvenience is just not worth the reward.

    I might have to try the jumbo ziplock method next year.

  2. "We've been frying for the last couple of years"

    That is super funny because Mr S. has been trying to talk me into frying. But I didn't want to burn the house down. It doesn't matter that its hardly possible.

    "the oil is a PITA to get rid of."

    No hippes in your area then? Aren't they suppose to be the solution of getting rid of our used fat frying oil?

  3. No hippes in your area then?

    AAAHAHAHAHAHAHHAAAAA!! we live on a military base!! No hippes within miles from us.

    The frying thing is pretty good, but the prep is a pain, and the constant worry that something could go wrong is not too fun. Last year it started to rain just as we were going to start, which sucked, since that late in the day, it's not like you can say. "Well, I'll just pop it into the oven instead!" Add to that the fact that we do not own our own propane tank (I'm a charcoal griller), so we always have to borrow one. So oven bag all the way this year.

  4. OH! right. I knew that.

    I just get so used to 2 out of every 3rd person being some flavor of hippy, I assume they have infiltrated everywhere.

    Yeah.. rain on hot oil does sound like a good fun time.