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Easy Turkey Brine

(2 Votes)
YIELDS
enough brine for one 16- to 20-pound turkey
CHILL TIME
8 Hr

Why not give your holiday turkey an overnight soak in a seasoned salt water solution? For a moist and flavorful bird, try using the process known as brining. It's easy and we're sure you'll find the result feast-worthy!

What You'll Need:
  • 2 gallons (32 cups) cold water, divided
  • 1 1/2 cups coarse salt
  • 6 bay leaves
  • 2 tablespoons whole black peppercorns
  • 1 tablespoon fennel seeds
  • 1 teaspoon mustard seeds (optional)
  • 1 (16- to 20-pound) fresh whole turkey, rinsed and patted dry
  • 2 cups apple juice
  • 2 onions, thinly sliced
  • 8 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 1 bunch parsley
What To Do:
  1. Bring 4 cups of water to a boil and add salt, bay leaves, peppercorns, fennel and mustard seeds, if desired; simmer 5 minutes. Cool completely.
     
  2. Place turkey in a large oven bag then place in a clean 5-gallon bucket. Add salt water mixture and remaining ingredients and seal the bag. Place a weight on top of  turkey so it doesn’t float.
     
  3. Place bucket in refrigerator overnight (see Notes), turning turkey once to make sure it is evenly brined.
     
  4. One hour before roasting, drain well and pat dry, discarding excess marinade, then follow cooking instructions for the recipe you desire.
Notes
  • If you don't have enough space for a 5-gallon bucket in your refrigerator, you can use a cooler instead. Just make sure you put enough ice in cooler to keep it cold overnight, adding enough ice as needed to keep the temperature at 40 degrees F. Be sure to follow directions as stated, turning turkey once during the process.
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i look forward to trying this, but am mostly curious: could you do this to a chicken as well?

Yes, you can make this recipe with chicken. Just cut the recipe in half because a turkey is about 16-20 lbs and a chicken is about 5- lbs. Sounds yummy!

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