Turkey: Maple Brine

posted by Cissy 11-14-101 1:57 PM

Maple Brine
(makes enough for a 14 pound turkey)

2 c brown sugar
1 c maple syrup
3/4 c kosher salt
3 head garlic -- cloves separated, not peeled
6 ea bay leaf
1 1/2 c fresh ginger -- unpeeled, chopped
2 tsps dried chile flakes
1 1/2 c soy sauce
5 sprig fresh thyme
3 qts water

Preparing the brine: Bring liquid to a boil. Add salt and sugar (if you are using sugar) and dissovle completely. Add herbs and seasonings. The seasonings are added to the hot liquid to extract the flavors, therefore better flavoring the meat. Cool the brine completely. To speed cooling, heat only juice, sugar and salt, then add flavorings to boiling brine mixture. Add ice water to accelerate cooling process. (It is best to make the brine the day before you plan to brine your turkey or chicken.)

When cool, put meat into a non-corrosive container and pour the brine over it. The meat must be completely covered, so use a plate to weigh it down if necessary.

Suggestion: For a turkey, place the bird inside a Reynolds baking bag and put both into a container that fits snugly around turkey and pour brine into the bag. My pot is too large for the turkey, so I place cans and bottles around the sides of the pan before adding the brine.

Remove product from brine and discard brine. Rinse lightly with tap water and pat dry with paper towels. For turkey, place turkey on plate, uncovered, in fridge for at least 12 hours before roasting. Follow roasting instructions on package. Do not stuff turkey; bake stuffing outside of bird in a casserole.

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