Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Turkey Brine

It’s that time of year, when everyone’s worried about either the In-laws or the Turkey. Not sure I can help you with the in-law but I think I can definitely help with the turkey. J

I’ve always been a skeptic about brine turkey or just brining in general until I tried it. Just the thought of all that salt perpetrating my bird, made me nervous.

So if this is your first time Brining Turkey   …. Don’t worry YOU GOT THIS!

Here’s a fool proof step by step, finger licking, juicy to the last bite, Brined Turkey  …and hey, maybe that’ll impress the in-laws.

Brining involves soaking your turkey in a salt solution for a period of time, just long enough for the salt to alter the molecular structure of the meat. I know you are probably thinking; “salt water and turkey, no way!”  But trust me on this one; your turkey will be extra juicy this year.

Your supermarket may even sell the ready-made brine solution. But making your own is also good. You’ll need kosher salt and whatever other aromatic ingredient you may want to add. I’m telling you, I make a batch of this and my house smells’ so delicious and that’s just the brine solution.

I use half unsalted vegetable stock and half water, I cannot leave out my rosemary and apples but you can pretty much add whatever aromatics you want, just watch the salt content.

Few things to remember:

1.            Only brine fresh turkey. Reason being, most frozen turkeys are typically already injected with a sodium solution to help with freezing. Be sure to check the package to make sure it doesn’t say “injected with sodium solution”.

2.            When making the gravy for the turkey, if you are using store bought stock, try to buy the one that’s already low in sodium.

3.            Making your gravy from the drippings of a brined turkey is never a good idea, because you could end up with a salty batch. Just be sure to do the taste test before serving.

4.            Remember you can add salt to the dish but you cant take it out



  • 8 cups vegetable stock
  • 1 gallon water
  • 1 gallon Cold Water
  • 2 cups Brown Sugar
  • 1-1/2 cup Kosher Salt
  • 5 cloves Garlic, Minced
  • 4 Tablespoons Fresh Rosemary Leaves
  • 3 Tablespoons Peppercorns
  • 5 whole Bay Leaves
  • 1 large apple
  • 2 teaspoon ginger
  • 1 bag of ice


  1. Combine all ingredients in a large pot
  2. Stir until salt and sugar dissolve. Bring to a boil, then turn off heat and cover
  3. Allow to cool completely, and pour into a large brining bag or pot (I used a small cooler)
  4. Place uncooked turkey in brine solution breast facing down, you can refrigerate for 16 to 24 hours or if you have no space, pour a bag of ice on top of the turkey, cover and let sit. Don’t forget to turn the bird if needed
  5. When ready to roast turkey, remove turkey from brine and discard brine
After Brining
  1. Rinse turkey under cold running water for a few minutes.
  2. Then submerge turkey in a pot or sink of fresh, cold water.
  3. Allow to sit in clean water for 15 minutes to remove salt on the surface and in the cavity.
  4. Remove turkey from clean water, pat dry, and cook according to your normal roasting method
SEE POST on Roasting Turkey

not pictured: I added 2 teaspoon of ground ginger   ~cuz I can :)

add both container of vegetable stock = 8 cups

add you aromatics, roasemary, bay leaves, peppercorn, pimento

brown sugar and salt goes in

I love the smell of cooked apples so I added 1.

this smell so good

I didnt have a brine bag or pot big enough to brine in, so I used a small cooler like a charm.

even though its in the cooler I wanted to be on the safe side,
so I filled a bag of ice and put it inside the cooler with the turkey

all done, just close and let sit :0)

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