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Unread 11-13-2012, 11:14 AM   #1
chilidog
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Default Turkey brine question

I've read the thread on the ultimate Thanksgiving brine. My question is, can you smoke a turkey without a brine? We are trying to cut some of the salt out of our food and I'm not too sure I would like the turkey if it had a sweet flavor from the sugar. Do I need to wrap the turkey at some point to hold in the juice?
Do the brined turkeys have a salty taste?
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Unread 11-13-2012, 11:40 AM   #2
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A standard proper brine will significantly increase the moisture level of the average turkey cook, especially by widening the window when a turkey goes from done to overdone and dry. It will not noticeably increase the saltiness or sweetness. No need to wrap either, just let it rest before carving. Everyone should try it at least once; most people will not go back to an unbrined bird. Good luck!
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Unread 11-13-2012, 11:43 AM   #3
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+1^^^^^^
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Unread 11-13-2012, 12:17 PM   #4
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+2

Well said!
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Unread 11-13-2012, 02:45 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chilidog View Post
I've read the thread on the ultimate Thanksgiving brine. My question is, can you smoke a turkey without a brine? We are trying to cut some of the salt out of our food and I'm not too sure I would like the turkey if it had a sweet flavor from the sugar. Do I need to wrap the turkey at some point to hold in the juice?
Do the brined turkeys have a salty taste?
Kevin
Sir, where is this ultimate turkey brine you speak of?
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Unread 11-13-2012, 02:55 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chilidog View Post
I've read the thread on the ultimate Thanksgiving brine. My question is, can you smoke a turkey without a brine? We are trying to cut some of the salt out of our food and I'm not too sure I would like the turkey if it had a sweet flavor from the sugar. Do I need to wrap the turkey at some point to hold in the juice?
Do the brined turkeys have a salty taste?
Kevin
Sure. I've done a few without brining, just injected with some melted butter and laid the rub to it. Did an unbrined one last year at TG that several people told me it was the best turkey they'd ever eaten-moist, juicy, and tasty.
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Unread 11-13-2012, 02:59 PM   #7
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I have cooked several turkeys a year since 1994. None of them have been brined. All have gotten complements from guests and family. I do keep the kettle temperature down to around 300 deg, which helps increase the chances of not overshooting the desired finished temperature, resulting in dryness. We do not eat the skin, so skin crispness is not an issue.
All I have done on many of them is rubbed the skin with sesame oil, others I rub under the skin with olive oil and spices.
I have brined chickens and turkey legs, though.
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Unread 11-13-2012, 03:01 PM   #8
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I just did a turkey without brining it over the weekend. It was a frozen turkey with the solution already added so I didn't brine, turned out fine. About an hour into the smoke I did place a piece of foil over the breast to help keep it from drying out. 14 lb turkey took 2 hours 40 minutes at 300-325. I hope this helps.
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Unread 11-13-2012, 03:11 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chilidog View Post
I've read the thread on the ultimate Thanksgiving brine. My question is, can you smoke a turkey without a brine? We are trying to cut some of the salt out of our food and I'm not too sure I would like the turkey if it had a sweet flavor from the sugar. Do I need to wrap the turkey at some point to hold in the juice?
Do the brined turkeys have a salty taste?
Kevin
I brine all poultry except chicken wings and have never had a problem with a salt taste.
Mrs Kapn is hyper-critical/sensitive to salt and has always loved the food.

But if you fear it, just buy a bird and cook it.
It will be fine and good eats and the "fears" will not enter into the results.

TIM
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Unread 11-13-2012, 03:15 PM   #10
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Default Surface Brine

I did a surface brine this weekend - rubbing butter all over the bird and then a liberal dusting of salt onto the bird and into the fridge overnight.

I've brined many chickens the traditional way and love them, but think I'll use the surface brine from now on. The results were very moist, but not spongy. The texture of the meat was better and the flavor of the bird came through.

Considering you don't have to go to all the trouble of washing out your cooler, making the brine and tossing in the ice, I think I'll stick with the surface brine from now on.

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Unread 11-13-2012, 03:29 PM   #11
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I brined 2 birds last yuear- one from Turkey 101, the other Pattiodadios Ultimate Turkey Brine Both were excellent Not salty or sweet. Very flavorful. There was little left of 36lbs of turkey
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Unread 11-13-2012, 03:34 PM   #12
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Yup I've used Patio Daddios recipe for two years now. Love it. John Know what he's doing for sure.
http://www.patiodaddiobbq.com/2009/1...key-brine.html
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Unread 11-13-2012, 07:08 PM   #13
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Thanks for all the replys. I may try the brine. My main concern was I didn't want it to be salty or sweet. Will take turkey out of freezer tomorrow and thaw in refrigerator until Saturday then put in brine overnight and smoke Sunday
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Unread 11-13-2012, 07:10 PM   #14
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I use smokin okies holiday brine, two day brine and it's out of control delicious. Going to start doing turkeys this weekend. I tend to get recruited to people's parties to do their primes and turkeys. I can't say no to playing with my grills in the backyard.
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