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Old 11-03-2003, 10:31 AM   #3
Rowan Bailey
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Join Date: Aug 2003
Location: So. California
Posts: 484


Brining a Turkey
This is a great way to add moisture to any turkey. I stuff the turkey with the fruit that I used in the brine instead of stuffing. It cooks quicker and I don't make stuffing. I only make one - two carb dishes for thanksgiving.
1 (10 to 12-pound) turkey
Soak the turkey in the brine, covered and refrigerated, for at least 4 hours and up to 24 hours.

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F.

Remove the turkey from the brine and rinse well under cold running water. Pat dry with paper towels, inside and out. Place breast side down in a large, heavy roasting pan, and rub on all sides with the butter. Season lightly inside and out with salt and pepper.

Roast the turkey, uncovered, breast side down for 1 hour. Remove from the oven, turn, and baste with 1/2 cup stock. Continue roasting with the breast side up until an instant-read meat thermometer registers 165 degrees F when inserted into the largest section of thigh (avoiding the bone), about 2 3/4 to 3 hours total cooking time. Baste the turkey once every hour with 1/2 to 3/4 cup chicken or turkey stock.

Remove from the oven and place on a platter. Tent with aluminum foil and let rest for 20 minutes before carving.

1 cup salt
1 cup brown sugar
2 oranges, sliced
2 lemons, sliced
2 limes, sliced
6 sprigs thyme
4 sprigs rosemary

To make the brining solution, dissolve the salt and sugar in 2 gallons of cold water in a non-reactive container (such as a clean bucket or large stockpot, or a clean, heavy-duty, plastic garbage bag.) Add the oranges, lemons, thyme, and rosemary.

Note: if you have a big turkey and need more brine than this, use 1/2 cup salt and 1/2 cup brown sugar for every gallon of water.

I bought a small trashcan like for a bathroom, and lined it with a trash bag and then closed the trashbag and put it in the bottom of the refrigerator....I suggest brining for at least 12 hours....

Here are some alternatives for traditional thanksgiving dishes...

instead of sweet potatos -- mash butternut squash mixed with butter or margarine cinnamon and nutmeg and some splenda.....

instead of mashed potatos, try roasting red potatos sprayed with olive oil and rosemary, salt and pepper....less calories and higher glycemic count for low carb diets.

make cranberry sauce fresh...mix fresh cranberries with fresh orange juice, juice of a fresh lemon, throw in cinnamon sticks and sweeten to taste with sweetner. If you cook slow (cover it they will spit as they cook) it will thicken, stir often. You can add some thickner if you want it thicker, unflavored gelatin, arrowroot or corn starch.

Instead of that green bean casserole, cook fresh green beans and mix with fresh garlic slices, mint and salt and pepper tossed in olive oil. Serve at room temperature.

Serve a Spinach Salad tossed with a mild feta cheese, sliced fresh strawberries and either pecans or walnuts tossed in your favorite light vingarette, I make one with olive oil, balsamic, salt and pepper, the balsamic is sweet and that brings out the tast of the strawberries.

I say don't be afraid to introduce new things to traditional meals....people will complain, but they will eat and they will like it. They will also not go into a food coma afterwards, and they will be grateful for that.
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