In my previous post, Holiday Turkey Brine, I provided a recipe for a turkey brine mixture that can also be turned into a gift. Today I am sharing the process I use for brining the turkey.
Instructions For Brining a Turkey (up to 20 pounds):
- Start with a fresh turkey – one that has not been previously frozen. Or minimally, find one that has not been injected with a sodium solution. If your turkey has already been infused with sodium or is kosher (see caption below) make sure it is gluten free and reduce the total brining time.
- Remove the wrapping, take out the bags of giblets/neck from inside and rinse the turkey.
- Place the bird inside one turkey brining bag or two turkey-sized oven bags or a heavy duty zip-top bag. (NOTE: Bags made specifically for brining turkeys are tougher but they are also more expensive. As an alternative I double-bagged a turkey-sized oven bag and placed it in a roasting pan to ensure against leaks.)
- Add turkey brine dry mixture and fresh ingredients (garlic, orange peel, fresh rosemary, orange juice and honey) to a stock pot with one gallon of water and bring to a boil (stirring occasionally).
- Remove the pot from the heat. (The aroma will be intoxicating!)
- Add one gallon of cold water to the pot and allow to cool completely.
- Pour the brine mixture over the turkey inside the bag(s).
- Seal up the bag tightly and place in the refrigerator for 12-24 hours. (Some people recommend one hour per pound)
- Ideally you will flip the turkey part of the way through the process to ensure even treatment.
In my next post I will show how I roasted the brined turkey.
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