Are you working this week?
I have to work Monday and Tuesday and then I'm off work. For 5 whole days.
Except for Wednesday and Friday, where I have to counsel at night.
But still. During the DAY, I'm going to be free.
I'm going to be eating.
I'm going to be resting.
I'm going to be yoga....ing.
Are you making a turkey on Thursday? Sorry I keep asking questions about your week. I'm interested to know. It should totes be thawed by now, if you're using a frozen one. I really like brining turkeys and whole chickens to keep them super moist while they roast. I brine things when I smoke them too, but the method is the same and works really well no matter how you cook the turkey!
To bring a bird, you need a massive bag to hold the brine and the bird, and a massive bin or cooler to hold THAT. I use a big galvanized drink tub, and it works really well! Get ready to move around some fridge shelves too....it's worth it, though!
Here's what I use in my brine:
- 1 gallon water
- 1 cup white vinegar
- 1 head garlic, cloves peeled and smashed
- ½ cup salt
- ¼ cup sugar
Bring everything to a boil except the garlic cloves - let the mixture boil until it's all dissolved. Then, allow it to cool until you're ready to use it.
Brining takes awhile, so, assuming you're celebrating Thanksgiving on Thursday, let this be your timeline for brining and cooking the turkey:
Monday: Check to be sure you have all brining ingredients. If you're feeling super ambitious, go ahead and make the brine. It can sit on the stovetop to cool fully for a day or two until you're ready to use it.
Tuesday Morning: Stick the turkey in the large bag (unwrapped and giblets removed), and cover it with the cooled brine. If the brine doesn't cover the turkey, add more cold water until the turkey is submerged. Add the garlic cloves, too! Seal the turkey and place it in the fridge.
Wednesday: remove the turkey from the bag and carefully discard the brine. Place it on a roasting pan with a rack UNCOVERED to dry in the fridge for 12 - 24 hours.
Thursday: Roast away! The general rule for roasting turkeys is 325F for 15 minutes per pound, so time accordingly. Some recipes use varying temperatures to get a crispy skin and world peace, so feel free to follow your favorite recipe.
If you're interested in learning how I smoke my turkeys, click here - that's fun too!
It's also fun to place celebratory accessories on birds from the smoker with very dark skin.
Happy Thanksgiving Week! There will be more ideas to come - I'd love to know what you're planning on making this week!