Help with brining an enhanced turkey...
We have a turkey enhanced with an 8% solution (I know- should have bought a non-enhanced bird but too late). Has anyone had success brining an enhanced turkey and, if so, what modifications (if any) should be made to the brine recipe or duration of the brine?
This is a recent thread that may give you some ideas. Very similar situation...
I've done 2 turkeys now...both 8% enhanced. One was 13.5lbs and one was 16lbs. I cut the salt by 1/2 in the brine and the birds came out great.
I'm no expert but I just did an 8% bird yesterday as a trial run for Thanksgiving and according to my guinea pigs, (friends at work) it was amazing. 15 pound bird
2 gal water, I used RO water just because I have well water and Ro tastes better.
8Tbs. garlic POWDER
6Tbs. ground black pepper
1/2 lb salt
1 cup white sugar
Mix until sugar and salt are disolved. Submerge bird and put in fridge. I brined for 10 hours rinsed pat dry with paper towel and let set in fridge uncovered over night. Seasoned with your favorite rub and smoked at 325 for 3 hours. Breast temp 160 pulled from smoker and let rest for 15 minutes before carving. Extremely juicy. Good luck.
I've rebrined a supermarket turkey before. I went very light on salt in my usual brine recipe (at bottom of page), and heavy on the herbs. The soak will allow the salinity inside and outside the bird to equalize, and it'll carry some herb flavor with it. The dry refrigerated rest allows the brine that stays in the bird to distribute within the meat.
Anyone know the formula for brining a turkey per lb with the 8% solution. The turkey I have is 22lbs and most of the brines are using from 10 to 15lb birds, do I need to adjust for size?
Don't stress about the enhanced turkey and brining. I spent days searching the interwebs for the answer of whether or not to brine an enhanced turkey and the exact percentages i should use. At the end of the day I just went ahead and said fark it and brined it anyway. Turned out perfect! Best Birds ever!
Heres what I did:
Apple Juice Brine:
1 part apple juice
3 parts water
good amount of brown sugar
bunch of oranges quartered
fistfull of cloves
two handfulls of garlic cloves
bunch of kosher salt
few bay leaves
bring sugar and apple jiuce to a boil then add the cold water
mix together and brine for 24 hours (I'd do it two days before the cook)
12 hours before the cook I took the birds out of the brine and rubbed them down with a chipotle garlic rub I whipped up.
Smoke on the BGE for about 5 hours and 300-325 degrees. Three birds and they were all awesome in flavor and totally moist.
Don't stress and have fun!
I brined and cooked 2 turkeys two weeks ago and then 4 turkeys last week that were enhanced, and skipped the brining.
I injected all of them with juice and seasoning and rubbed them just before cooking.
They all came out great.
I've been brining my turkeys for more than 15 years, but after giving it a lot of thought, I concluded that enhanced bird cooks just as well as a brined birds, and that injecting just prior to cooking is far more effective at delivering flavor than through brining.
Anything that can make T-Day simpler without compromising the end results gets my vote.
Here's my thoughts, probably should just start a new thread for a sticky. I've seen some guesswork on people's blogs and post and I've tried to get detailed answers from some food scientists.
here's what they're telling me (based on their knowledge, but I did ask if they tested it and they said they hadn't)
You CAN brine an enhanced bird. Why? And no, you don't need to reduce the salt.
Brining works by Osmosis. The idea is that you have a higher concentration (brine) and a lower concentration (bird) and through brining, they achieve equilibrium.
So, that last word is important.
Brining an enhance bird doesn't ADD salt to an already salty bird because the equilbrium will try to be achieved between the % of salt and the two objects.
It's just not an additive effect.
Thus, when you brine, if for example the bird is technically saltier than the brine, it won't take on more salt.
Instead, just the opposite. The brine will draw out salt from the bird.
So, technically, you could soak an enhanced bird in water and it would reduce the % of salt. The problem is it's not just enhanced with salt, but more stuff.
So, I have tested this with the family an friends. I've brined in my Turkey 101/Brining 101 brines my normal 48 hours and no one indicated it was salty.
I've done the test with enhanced birds up to 15%. I haven't test over that percentage (because I didn't want to buy them).
Your individual mileage may vary.
Oh and FYI, the brining 101 link was broken this weekend and should be fixed today or tomorrow. If you want it, just PM me direct.
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