LC Not Just For Turkey Note
Although this simple-as-can-be brine works magic with your Thanksgiving centerpiece, it’s not just for turkey. Oh no. Far from it. Pork and chicken also respond favorably to its charms. And you can rejigger the recipe any way you see fit by tossing in some alternate flavorings. We’ve offered several of the author’s faves in the recipe that follows, but care to share what you fancy? Please do so in a comment below.
- Quick Glance
- Quick Glance
- 5 M
- 25 M
- Makes 2 gallons brine
Bring the water to a boil in a large stock pot over medium-high heat. Add the salt and stir until it’s completely dissolved and the water is clear. If desired, add other ingredients and allow the brine to come to a low boil. Turn the heat down to low and allow the brine to simmer for about 15 minutes.
Remove from the heat and let cool to room temperature. Then refrigerate until the brine solution reaches a temperature of 33 to 39°F. (This is crucial to keep the turkey safe from spoilage.) Pour the brine into a large nonreactive container of some sort (this could be just about anything that’s large enough to contain the brine and the turkey. Add the turkey. There should be enough brine to submerge the bird. The bird will tend to float, so to keep it completely submerged, place a heavy plate on top of it or stick a brick or can or something heavy in a resealable bag and place it on the bird. Refrigerate for 8 to 12 hours.
This time-saving variation should be used only when you’re keeping the brine basic (that is to say, when you’re not adding any sugar or spices, which would require heat to dissolve or bring out the oils or flavors of the ingredients). Fill a large container with 2 gallons water. Add 2 cups kosher salt and stir until it is completely dissolved and the water is clear. If you wish, add other basic liquid ingredients to this solution, such as low-sodium soy sauce, Worcestershire sauce, hot sauce, lemon juice, apple cider, beer, etc.