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Unread 11-20-2012, 04:48 PM   #31
tish
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tortaboy View Post
Thanks Tish. This is much easier than wet brining....

Just picked up my two fresh birds and used your dry brine recipe (Even down to the fresh Rosemary from my backyard).

After the brine......

What are you planning on doing on Thanksgiving? You adding any seasonings on the outside of your bird just before cooking?
I'll put some lemon wedges inside the bird along with a few sprigs of the fresh rosemary. Then I'll be basting the bird with a good quality unsalted butter. That's it. Keeping it simple and fuss free.

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Originally Posted by rogwadd View Post
Good luck, Tish. I've been up in the air about Thanksgiving this year. Since my family's in Savannah and I usually visit them during Christmas, I've got a second family in the DC area that I've shared Thanksgiving the last several years. So it's either that or an orphans' dinner locally for all my transplant friends.

I've got a friend that dropped off a gimongous Turkey yesterday evening. I think she's looking for a seat on Thursday, so I'm trying to set up a little get together.

She tore off the tag and I don't have a clue how much the thing weighs. I take the thing upstairs to the bathroom and step onto the scale. Drop the turkey and then step back on the scale. The thing weighs 18-19 lbs. My last two adventures with turkey involved ones under 14 lbs.

I stumbled over Parson's article and decided to go the dry brine route as well. The bird is a 3%'er, so I went with a little over 3tbs kosher salt, 1 -1 1/2 tbs lemon pepper, some fresh rosemary in the cavity, a tablespoon or two of Italian seasoning, 1 tsp celery seed, and a couple tsp paprika. I wrapped the bird in about 50 feet of plastic wrap and parked in the frig about an hour ago.

I want to air dry the thing for a while before starting my smoke, so I'll have to decide whether to unwrap tomorrow night or early Thurs morning. I'm guessing I'll spend at least 4 hours cooking plus rest means I've got to start by 11am. Guess we'll see how the the standing juices look throughout Wed night. I'm excirted
Sounds like a plan. If it were me, I'd unwrap early Thursday morning to give the salt every opportunity to draw all that moisture back into the bird. Your seasonings sound great! Let us know how it came out.

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Originally Posted by midwestsmokeboy View Post
I have 2 processed birds that I am smoking for a buddy. It has the pop up thingy in the bird. should I remove this before I smoke it? I am not a big turkey fan. I am a prime rib guy.
Gee, I guess that's up to you. My birds don't come with a pop up thingy, usually. But it's not like it's gonna hurt anything if you leave it in there. I usually wiggle a drumstick, and if it feels right, I double check with the IT temperature. At 155-160*, I'm looking to take it off the cooker.

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Originally Posted by 5string View Post
I always thought brining was to add moisture to the protein, what's the difference between a "dry brine" and a "rub"?
The amount of salt, and the time the salt stays in contact with the meat, I guess. A dry brine is mostly salt, tightly wrapped in plastic, which sits on the meat for days. It draws the moisture out of the meat, and then pulls it back in again along with the flavors of whatever else you put on the meat. Russ Parson describes it as "seasoning all the way to the bone". It's more of a process than a recipe. Rub is a recipe of many flavors that you sprinkle on and rub into the meat a while before cooking, or maybe the night before. Does it penetrate deeply into the meat? I haven't found it to be so, but others may disagree. Most dry brines I've seen have a lot fewer ingredients than your average rub, from what I can tell. They seem simpler. As I said, it's a process more than a recipe.

Quote:
Originally Posted by buccaneer View Post
How's it looking tish, any moisture in the bottom of the bag?
Yup. There's a small puddle in the bottom of the bag. Per Parson, I try to massage the meat through the plastic bag, and just make sure that the salt is still evenly distributed all over the bird. No need to open the bag at all until Thursday morning.
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Unread 11-20-2012, 05:02 PM   #32
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That looks like a good start Tish, I suspect you will nail it as always.

An 8% solution is not a brine, but, it will add sodium to the meat. You can still dry brine it, but, I doubt the benefits will be there. The 8% solution will aid in moisture retention even as the solution is a little low in sodium. I would just go with a good herb rub and let it ride.
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Unread 11-20-2012, 05:11 PM   #33
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Quote:
Originally Posted by landarc View Post
That looks like a good start Tish, I suspect you will nail it as always.

An 8% solution is not a brine, but, it will add sodium to the meat. You can still dry brine it, but, I doubt the benefits will be there. The 8% solution will aid in moisture retention even as the solution is a little low in sodium. I would just go with a good herb rub and let it ride.
I'm inclined to agree with you, Bob. Sometimes less is more.
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Unread 11-20-2012, 06:09 PM   #34
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I would leave the thingy in. I remember an Alton Brown episode where we said to leave it in. You pull and leave a hole for juices to escape.

Quote:
Originally Posted by midwestsmokeboy View Post
I have 2 processed birds that I am smoking for a buddy. It has the pop up thingy in the bird. should I remove this before I smoke it? I am not a big turkey fan. I am a prime rib guy.
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Unread 11-20-2012, 06:27 PM   #35
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^^^Good point!
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Unread 11-20-2012, 06:34 PM   #36
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Completely forgot this. Gonna go massage my bird. brb.

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Originally Posted by tish View Post
Parson, I try to massage the meat through the plastic bag, and just make sure that the salt is still evenly distributed all over the bird. No need to open the bag at all until Thursday morning.
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Unread 11-20-2012, 08:00 PM   #37
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For anyone who's interested in possibly trying this method next year, if you buy a frozen turkey, you can dry-brine it in the fridge while it defrosts. I forgot to mention that earlier, probably because it doesn't apply to my bird. Seeing the thread about wet brine and frozen birds reminded me. I prefer fresh to frozen, but in a pinch, as long as it's unenhanced or very low sodium content, I'd use this method while defrosting a frozen bird. It's always nice to know you have the option.
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Unread 11-20-2012, 08:16 PM   #38
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I've got to say Trish, you've got me thinking. I've got two birds in the fridge ready to be brined tonight. Wife was asking if I was going to do 2 different recipes like I've done in the past, and I told her no, just two brined birds. Think its too late to try this now?
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Unread 11-20-2012, 08:37 PM   #39
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It's your bird, Dave. There's nothing stopping you from giving it a try. But my worry is that the salt is removing moisture from the bird, and if you cut the time short, you're robbing yourself of the return of that moisture. Why not wait until you can give it the full three days, and have it turn out great?
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~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Just a little pyro at heart! Who's got the hot dogs?
Bubba Keg, Weber Genesis E-310 NG
Mini WSM, Shhh!!! Michael's surprise
<'\__!
.// .\\ Puppy baby says 'piss on it and walk away!'
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
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Unread 11-20-2012, 08:52 PM   #40
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Thanks everyone for the replies. I am going to leave the temp thingy in the bird! I"m doing mine on the Pit Barrel Cooker/cooking vertical with the hooks. Going to rub it down with some Olive oil and my all purpose rub. Ill be checking internal temps after about three hours. I guess we'll see. By the way do you know where your thingy is?????
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