Turkey Brine

I'm hosting Thanksgiving dinner this year and the best part about that is making some things my way. First of all, I love to brine the turkey overnight for the best results. I really think it makes a big difference.

Here's a photo of my brine cooking on the stove. I make it today so it can cool all day then tomorrow morning it will go over the turkey. That way the turkey can soak for 24 hours before roasting. The scent of the brine while simmering is amazing.

Here's the recipe I use (it's from Pioneer Woman):
  • 3 cups apple juice or apple cider
  • 2 gallons cold water
  • 4 tablespoons fresh rosemary leaves
  • 5 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 1/2 cups kosher salt
  • 2 cups brown sugar
  • 3 tablespoons peppercorns
  • 5 whole bay leaves
  • peel of 3 large oranges
Combine all ingredients in a large pot. Stir until salt and sugar dissolve. Bring to a boil, then turn off heat and cover.

Allow to cool completely, then pour into a large brining bag or pot. Place uncooked turkey in brine solution, then refrigerate for 16 to 24 hours.

When ready to roast turkey, remove from brine. Submerge turkey in a pot or sink of fresh, cold water. Allow to sit in clean water for 15 minutes to remove excess salt from the outside.

Discard brine. Remove turkey from clean water, pat dry, and cook according to your normal roasting method.

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