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News 4 Cooks: Thanksgiving turkey in a brine - KVOA | KVOA.com | Tucson, Arizona

News 4 Cooks: Thanksgiving turkey in a brine

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Iron Door Restaurant at Mt. Lemmon Ski Valley: Thanksgiving turkey in a brine

Brine ingredients:

3 quarts of water

1 quart of orange juice

1 cup salt

¾ cup sugar

1/8 cup minced fresh rosemary

½ cup minced fresh garlic

¼ cup minced fresh thyme

Turkey topping ingredients:

Salt and pepper

¼ cup fresh minced garlic

1/8 cup fresh minced rosemary

½ pound softened butter

Start by making your brine mixture, (marinate mixture). Take the water, salt, sugar, rosemary, garlic and thyme and put in a 6-quart pot. Bring mixture to a boil and let it simmer for 20 minutes. You want all of the herbs to begin to make a tea so you're essentially steeping the brine. After 20 minutes, remove from heat and add the orange juice. Let mixture completely cool the transfer to a container large enough to fix your turkey and have it completely submerged with the brine. If your turkey isn't covered in the brine, then make enough more to cover it. You'll want to leave the turkey in the brine for 48 hours. After the 48 hours, you're now ready to remove from brine. You can rinse turkey but it's not required.

Take your turkey and put in roasting pan with the breast up. Take the softened butter and rub all over exposed areas. Sprinkle rosemary and garlic evenly on turkey. Add salt and pepper to your liking.

After approximately 45 minutes, the butter should be melted with some of the turkey drippings and you can start basting your bird. I baste mine every 15 minutes until done as i prefer a crispy skin. As far as cook time, it'll take about 1 hour per 4 pounds of turkey, (add 15 min per pound if stuffed).

You'll want to cook the turkey at least 165 degrees to ensure that it's fully cooked. Always take the temperature on the leg or thigh as the dark meat takes longer to cook than the white breast meat. If your skin is getting too dark you haven't reached the right temperature then you'll want to tent it with foil. The brine will make your turkey so moist that you really don't need to foil to keep moist, only to prevent over cooking the top.

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