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Unread 11-10-2010, 07:20 PM   #1
bobaftt
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Default brine enhanced bird?

anybody ever brined one? I was thinking it would be too salty but thought I would see what yall thought.
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Unread 11-10-2010, 07:23 PM   #2
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I've rebrined an "enhanced" bird, and it turned out fine! The brine I soaked it in was quite light, and did more to transfer flavors than to add much by way of salt.
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Unread 11-10-2010, 07:43 PM   #3
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You should be ok if you use the ratio of one gallon water; one cup sugar; one half cup salt. Using a full cup of salt will make the bird too salty for sure.
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Unread 11-10-2010, 08:14 PM   #4
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The expert say no , but I did one last year turn out wonderful
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Unread 11-10-2010, 09:10 PM   #5
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yall talked me into it. Now if I can just find a bucket big enough... Did you guys do yours overnight?
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Unread 11-10-2010, 09:20 PM   #6
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Bed Bath and Beyond has brining bags. I've never used one but think it should work fine.
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Unread 11-10-2010, 09:47 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DivaHerself View Post
I've rebrined an "enhanced" bird, and it turned out fine! The brine I soaked it in was quite light, and did more to transfer flavors than to add much by way of salt.
Yep, exactly. The osmosis will take care of equalizing the salt and water
(that, and adding flavor is the whole point of brining), but just go easy on the
salt -- use a light brine, as Alexa and Dave mentioned.

No worries!

John
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Unread 11-11-2010, 05:37 AM   #8
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Brine or not! Mom's turkey is D-R-Y! She has a thing for burnt offerings!
But please don't tell her I said so. I've offered to grill, or smoke, or fry the turkey for years. No luck.
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Unread 11-11-2010, 08:11 AM   #9
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I've been working on a Brining 202 (basically advanced brining). I'm with Patio on this one for the most part, but I don't agree it has to be a "light" brine.

I think the myth most people believe is that if you brine an enhance bird you'll add salt.

Brining doesn't work that way. It worked to equilize the % in the bird with the
% in the brine. Osmosis is how it works. It exchanges liquid in the brine with the liquid in the bird.

You could actually take an enhanced bird (say a 20% bird) and put it in a light solution and some of the bird would try to equalize to the liquid outside thus reducing the original percentage.

It won't "add" to an already enhanced bird unless your solution is saltier than the % enhanced.

Basically for the 8, 12, 15% enhanced bird a normal brine will work just as advertised. I don't think you have to go "light" on the salt at all. Unless your normal brine is not very salty. Over about 15% then the brine isn't very effective.

But NO ONE buys a 20% enhanced bird anymore, right?

Russ
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Unread 11-11-2010, 09:17 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PatioDaddio View Post
Yep, exactly. The osmosis will take care of equalizing the salt and water
(that, and adding flavor is the whole point of brining), but just go easy on the
salt -- use a light brine, as Alexa and Dave mentioned.

No worries!

John
Not trying to be a jerk, but it is diffusion, not osmosis.
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Unread 11-11-2010, 10:20 AM   #11
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We brine all our birds enhanced or not with the same ratio and have never had a problem. just saying
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Unread 11-11-2010, 10:33 AM   #12
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Hey Bob, if you don't have a Bed Bath and Beyond, a big ziploc works well too like a 4 gal size, I know most waly worlds sell them, if not just go to Home Depot or Lowes and get a commercial grade plastic 5 gal bucket. I usually do mine in an ice chest for 48 hours. I use fruit juices, sugar, cloves, and yes salt, and use half the require water becauce I cover the whole thing in ice, the ice melts and gives you the right ratio of water to juice. Do it every year and for some reason the number of people who show up for tureky is growing.
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Unread 11-11-2010, 10:39 AM   #13
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I've never brined a Turkey before...Can some folks post their favorite recipes?

Thanks!
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Unread 11-11-2010, 12:06 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SmokinOkie View Post
... I think the myth most people believe is that if you brine an enhance bird you'll add salt.

Brining doesn't work that way. It worked to equilize the % in the bird with the % in the brine. Osmosis is how it works. It exchanges liquid in the brine with the liquid in the bird.
Not to be argumentative, but I disagree with you disagreeing with me.

Osmosis is a natural process whereby nature seeks to find balance
(homeostasis). As the famous quote states, nature abhors a vacuum.
Brining intentionally creates a salt, sugar and water vacuum inside the
meat.

When there is a saltier solution inside or outside of the meat in the brine,
osmosis will make it equalize, given enough time. You are correct that it
will equalize the concentration.

However, the second thing that a brine does is denature proteins. You can
think of it as sort of unraveling tightly wound strands. As the proteins
denature, they they are still too large to pass through the semi-permeable
cell wall, this means that more brine solution will pass into the cell to help
equalize the pressure. This continues until the pressure inside and outside
the cell are equalized.

The net result of all this is that the meat's cells now contain much more
water, and therefore salt, than they did when you started. This added
water is what causes brined meat to yield a more flavorful and moist final
product -- it started more flavorful (salt) and moist.

As the meat cooks, the proteins tighten and squeeze out water (again, to
equalize the pressure), but since there was more to start with, more is
there in then end.

So, I maintain that if you start with an "enhanced" bird and you brine with
a standard brine, you will necessarily add salt.

Not convinced? Here's what Cook's Illustrated found in their testing

Sodium levels by weight
Fresh - Brined for 4 hours (1 cup table salt per gallon): 0.22%
Fresh - Brined for 12 hours (1/2 cup table salt per gallon): 0.21%
Unbrined enhanced frozen: 0.27%
Brined enhanced frozen: 0.34%
Frozen kosher turkey: 0.16%

Just more food for thought (pun intended).

John
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Unread 11-11-2010, 12:14 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hawg Father of Seoul View Post
Not trying to be a jerk, but it is diffusion, not osmosis.
Actually, it's both.

Diffusion is the what, and osmosis is the how.

Osmosis means the diffusion of certain molecules across the semipermeable
cell membranes (walls) in order to equalize the ion concentrations of either
side.

John
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