Monday, December 7, 2009

Best Holiday Turkey

Don't you hate eating a dry turkey? Eating a dry turkey is just nasty and we've grown so accustomed to it, most folks don't even know it can turn out any other way. In fact, the Southern remedy to the problem is to resort to deep frying - go figure. While I appreciate fried food as much as anyone, the problem is easily overcome using steps that ANYONE can follow.

I recently paid $8 for a whole turkey - who can't afford that?? I then made a very simple brine. A brine is essentially just a salt solution. First figure out how many quarts of water you need to completely cover the turkey in a container. Then using about 30grams of salt per quart and another 30grams of brown sugar, dissolve the salt and sugar in about half the water on your stove. Once dissolved at a simmer, remove from heat and drop in fresh thyme, bay leaves, garlic, and whole peppercorns. Allow to cool completely, then soak the turkey in a cool place for 24 hours (just drop it in frozen). Remove the turkey and dry the outside about an hour. Stuff bay leaves, thyme, and butter under the skin covering the breast and coat the outside generously with S&P. Bake breast side down for about 1.5 hours on 350, then turn the turkey over for about another 1.5 hours until temp reaches about 160, and voila'. Once finished, baste the whole turkey with a light coat of real maple syrup. The result? A perfectly tender and juicy turkey with loads of flavor throughout. The picture is worth a thousand words. If you are not familiar with brining, do yourself a huge favor and give it a try. It will change your mind about that holiday turkey forever.

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