Rewind! Brining A Turkey

This post is a Recipe Rewind!
I originally posted this last December, but thought it would be a good time to post it again,
with American Thanksgiving and Christmas right around the corner!
It’s also a recipe worth sharing over and over again!
Have you ever brined a turkey?  Or eaten one that’s been brined?
A brined turkey is moist, flavourful and so delicious!
They are truly amazing.  I know for us, we will never do a turkey without brining it first.
We’ve done 3 of them now, with our most recent at our Canadian Thanksgiving in October.
Don’t be afraid!  Brining isn’t as hard as it might seem.

 

 

Turkey Brine
 
This recipe works for a 18-25 lb turkey.
Ingredients
  • 28 cups water
  • 1½ cups coarse salt
  • 6 bay leaves
  • 2 tbsp whole black peppercorns
  • 1 tsp mustard seeds
  • 1 tbsp whole coriander seeds
  • 8 garlic cloves
  • 1 large onion, thinly sliced
  • 1 bunch fresh thyme
  • 1 bottle dry white wine (Riesling)
Instructions
  1. Rinse your turkey, removing all the innards (neck, giblets...). Pat it dry
  2. Mix 4 cups of the water with the salt, peppercorns, mustard seeds, bay leaves, and coriander.
  3. Bring to a boil, and stir until all the salt has dissolved. Cool.
  4. Place turkey in a container large enough to hold it, and all the brine. You can use a stock pot, a cooler, a bucket - whatever, as long as it is clean. And as long as you can clean it (with bleach) after you are done!
  5. Add remaining water (24 cups), wine, garlic, onions, fresh thyme and cranberries.
  6. Let your turkey soak in the brine for about 12-24 hours, in the fridge. We did 24.
  7. You should turn the turkey once during the brining process.
Recipe adapted from Martha Stewart.

 

  • If you make gravy from the pan juices of a turkey that has been brined, you will likely find that it is quite salty.  I just cut down the saltiness of the gravy with water from the potatoes I boil for this dinner.  Just taste test as you go.
  • To make an extra festive brine, add 1 cup of whole fresh cranberries to the brine.  It just makes it look pretty!  And pretty is good right?!

 

Comments

  1. I’ve heard that brined turkeys are the best. I think I need to give this method a shot this Thanksgiving. Thanks for the tip.

  2. I wonder how old I will be when I am actually the one cooking the turkey. I guess when my mom or mother in law get too old to do it. Yikes!

  3. Ok – now I am convinced. Thank you for making it so clear and easy to follow. I will be trying this! Stopping over from Serenity Now

  4. I was looking out for a post like this. Any suggestions for a small er bird? I’m getting at 10-14 lb one this year. Thanks for the tips.

  5. Hey Jo-Anna,
    Inspired by you, I have brined a chicken once and will now brine our turkey for this weekend, after your on-line reminder about your recipe. When I did the chicken, I cut the skin over the breasts and slipped in lemon wedges and lemon thyme, a tip I read in another recipe (it actually called for lemon wedges and sage but I adapted it to what I had growing out front). The chicken turned out moist and lemon-y, it was so delicious! I thought I would share this variation. Keep up the good work!

  6. I am unexpectedly out of town this Easter weekend after my father-in-law had a heart attack. He will be discharged from the hospital in time for Easter supper, which also happens to be my mother-in-law’s birthday. With all of my brother in-laws coming to see him, I am so happy to be able to access this recipe and do something special for them at this time!

Trackbacks

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  3. […] Brined and BBQ’d Turkey Turkey Gravy Mashed Potatoes Green Beans Sweet Potato Casserole Glazed Carrots Roasted Brown Sugar & Rosemary Squash Wedges Braided Squash Crescent (Bread) Raisin and Herb Stuffing Cranberry Sauce, Pickles, Olives Pumpkin Pie with Vanilla Whip Cream Pecan Pie […]

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