[phpBB Debug] PHP Notice: in file /viewtopic.php on line 988: date(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected the timezone 'UTC' for now, but please set date.timezone to select your timezone.
[phpBB Debug] PHP Notice: in file /viewtopic.php on line 988: getdate(): It is not safe to rely on the system's timezone settings. You are *required* to use the date.timezone setting or the date_default_timezone_set() function. In case you used any of those methods and you are still getting this warning, you most likely misspelled the timezone identifier. We selected the timezone 'UTC' for now, but please set date.timezone to select your timezone.
[phpBB Debug] PHP Notice: in file /includes/functions.php on line 4505: Cannot modify header information - headers already sent by (output started at /includes/functions.php:3706)
[phpBB Debug] PHP Notice: in file /includes/functions.php on line 4507: Cannot modify header information - headers already sent by (output started at /includes/functions.php:3706)
[phpBB Debug] PHP Notice: in file /includes/functions.php on line 4508: Cannot modify header information - headers already sent by (output started at /includes/functions.php:3706)
[phpBB Debug] PHP Notice: in file /includes/functions.php on line 4509: Cannot modify header information - headers already sent by (output started at /includes/functions.php:3706)
www.goodeatsfanpage.com • View topic - Dry Brining Turkey

Dry Brining Turkey

Here you'll find tutorials, how-to's, gear discussions and everything you need to make your kitchen a well-oiled machine.

Moderators: Grovite, Slamdunkpro

Dry Brining Turkey

Postby Slamdunkpro » Mon Nov 08, 2010 11:55 am

Thanks to Party Flavor for posting this, I've copied it here so it doesn't get lost.

Party Flavor wrote: ......
About two years ago, I started dry brining after reading about it on some food sites. I had done AB's brines (both w/ and w/o aromatics) for the previous five or six years, with what I thought was great success. Wet brining is much better than no brining at all. It produces a turkey that seems nice and moist. When compared with a dry-brined turkey, however, what you think is "moist" is more accurately described as "wet." There's a dilution of flavor that occurs with all of the added water in a wet brine. Conversely, dry brining produces a turkey of similar moisture, but with a more concentrated turkey flavor.

Even more prominent, however, is the difference in texture. A dry brine results in a turkey that's firm and dense, while wet brining yields a bird whose meat is stringy and quite spongy in comparison. (I just saw everyone who wet brines say, "My turkey's not spongy." Sorry, but it is.)

And then there's the level of difficulty. Dry brining is much easier than wet brining. This hasn't been a factor for me, but it might be a tipping point for some. I'm generally willing to go the extra mile if I think the end product will be worth it, but in this case, it's foolish to do more and wind up with less.

Same moisture. Better flavor. Much better texture. Easier...

No-brainer.


The major caveat I will offer to the following is that I've done the following only on 12-20 lb. fresh turkeys without added solutions. My "technique" is a combination of experience and a number of recipes, most notably a series done by the L.A. Times in recent years. Below is a cut-and-pasted base recipe of theirs with my modifications:

If you let the turkey approach room temperature before step 1, the process will work even better...

1. Wash the turkey inside and out (removing neck and giblets), pat it dry and weigh it. Measure 1 tablespoon of salt into a bowl for every 5 pounds the turkey weighs (for a 15-pound turkey, you'd have 3 tablespoons). You can add any savory additions you like to the salt at this point - ground sage, crumbled bay leaves, lemon zest, minced rosemary, paprika, et cetera. I have experimented with added flavors and have found that they're generally subtle, though I've been cautious with my amounts so as not to overpower the flavor of the turkey itself. YMMV.

2. Sprinkle the inside of the turkey lightly with salt. Place the turkey on its back and salt the breasts, concentrating the salt in the center, where the meat is thickest. You'll probably use a little more than a tablespoon. It should look liberally seasoned, but not oversalted.

3. Turn the turkey on one side and sprinkle the entire side with salt, concentrating on the thigh. You should use a little less than a tablespoon. Flip the turkey over and do the same with the opposite side.

4. Place the turkey in a 2 1/2 -gallon sealable plastic bag (these work fine), press out the air and seal tightly. Place the turkey breast-side up in the refrigerator. Chill for 3 days, leaving it in the bag, but turning it and massaging the salt into the skin every day. For the last day, flip the turkey breast-side down before returning to the refrigerator.

5. Remove the turkey from the bag. There should be no salt visible on the surface and the skin should be moist but not wet. Wipe the turkey dry with a paper towel, place it breast-side up on a plate and refrigerate uncovered for at least 8 hours.

Let's recap so far. If you are cooking on Thursday:

- Sunday: Wash, dry, salt. Put in a plastic bag, breast-side up in the fridge.
- Monday: Massage to redistribute the salt. Return to fridge breast-side up.
- Tuesday: Massage to redistribute the salt. Return to fridge breast-side down.
- Wednesday: Remove from bag, dry well with paper towels (DO NOT RINSE!), return to fridge uncovered.


6. On the day it is to be cooked, remove the turkey from the refrigerator and leave it at room temperature at least 1 hour (preferably 2). Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. Truss your turkey with butcher's twine (as seen here - it's easy). Smear your turkey all over with softened (not melted) unsalted butter. If you desire, at this point you can use an injection if you'd like, although it's fine without it. You should probably mind the salt, however. I've recently tried a mixture of low sodium chicken broth, unsalted butter, white wine, grapeseed oil, brown sugar, and some spices. That gave it a nice, subtle sweetness, but I was again fairly conservative. If you do use an injection, try to avoid poking too many holes in the skin. The breasts can be injected at either end of the bird without piercing the skin.

7. Place the turkey breast-side down on a roasting rack in a roasting pan; put it in the oven. After 1 hour, remove the pan from the oven and carefully turn the turkey over so the breast is facing up. (It's easiest to do this by hand, using kitchen towels or oven mitts.). The original recipes have usually said 30 minutes for this step, but I've found the dark meat to be slightly underdone that way. Use this flip as an opportunity to smear more softened butter over your turkey and to insert your probe thermometer (yes, invest in one if you don't have one). If I recall correctly, the last turkey I did had a breast temperature around 90-95 degrees at this point, but don't hold me to that.

8. Reduce the oven temperature to 325 degrees, return the turkey to the oven (I smear with more softened butter about every 20 degrees and rotate the pan)... until it's done... which is kind of up to you. Until recently, I've pulled my poultry when it reached 160 degrees in the deepest part of the breast, with the expectation that it would rise a few degrees after that. In doing some reading online, I've since concluded that anything above about 150 degrees is a matter of personal preference (more to do with the texture and appearance of the meat rather than safety). For the last turkey I did, I pulled it at about 157 degrees and it was fine. I might try dropping that even more in the future. Total cooking time will obviously depend on the size of the bird, how cold it was at the start, how much you've bunny around with it, etc. You can probably ballpark it at 3-4 hours.

If near the end of your cooking time (maybe the last 5 degrees), the skin is not as brown as you'd like, a very short blast of high heat should do the trick, although this hasn't been much of a problem for me.

9. Remove the turkey from the oven, transfer it to a warm platter or carving board; tent loosely with foil. Let stand at least 30 minutes to let the juices redistribute through the meat. Carve and serve.

Image

... at least, that's what I do....


Party Flavor wrote:
n8urebabe wrote:Do you find the turkey to be very wet after the first day in the fridge?

No, I've never found it to be very wet, but again, I've never started from frozen and try to dry it very well before I salt. There will be some moisture in the bag (particularly in the first day or two), but generally, at most, it's just enough to make the inside of the bag cling to the bird and not so much that it forms a puddle or anything.

Russ Parsons of the L.A. Times wrote:Can I use a frozen turkey? Yes, see this year's story. We experimented with this last year and found that salting a frozen turkey and letting it defrost and brine at the same time works just fine. Just rinse the bird in cool running water to start the defrosting (and to un-freeze the bag of giblets inside enough that you can pull them out). Pat the bird dry with a paper towel and you're ready to go.

It's only been a day, but there's some moisture in the bag, should I worry? No. The salt pulls moisture from the turkey, but almost all of it will be reabsorbed. That's the way this thing works. If you're using a frozen turkey, there may even be a little moisture in the bag at the end of the brining.


ghenne wrote:
I smear with more softened butter about every 20 degrees and rotate the pan


I think I might give this dry brining a try this year.

I have a few questions on reapplying the butter.

As the temp increases and the turkey is getting hotter and hotter to handle what are you using to reapply the butter? A basting brush?

Is the butter melted or softened?

Thanks.

Party Flavor wrote:I use softened butter throughout because I think it provides better coverage. When the turkey is too hot to touch, I fold some paper towels into a small pad and use that to apply the butter. I scoop up enough butter each time so that the paper towels never brush against the skin.

koshersalty wrote:Thanks VERY much, PF. This was just what I was looking for.

Did you do all of the salting on the outside of the skin? Sounds like a silly question, but some of the tutorials showed them loosening the skin and salting between the skin and breast/thigh. This would explain the chicken I did today being just a little salty tasting.

Can't wait to try this. I want to make my MIL cry this year :twisted:


Party Flavor wrote:
koshersalty wrote:Did you do all of the salting on the outside of the skin? Sounds like a silly question, but some of the tutorials showed them loosening the skin and salting between the skin and breast/thigh. This would explain the chicken I did today being just a little salty tasting.


Yes, other than what you sprinkle in the cavity, all of the salt goes on the outside of the skin (see the salt distribution breakdown in steps 2 & 3). I've never done the CI version referenced in the article carla posted above.

I've tried putting non-salt-based additions (like herbs or truffle butter) under the skin just prior to cooking a dry-brined turkey and that works fine, but a) I find that loosening the skin too much makes for a slightly drier bird, and b) I tend to be a flavor purist - I like my turkey to taste like turkey.

Party Flavor wrote:
Parrothead wrote:I should try this same method with some chickens for beer can chicken - I bet it would work really well.


Russ Parsons said the inspiration was Judy Rodgers' famous chicken at Zuni Cafe in SF, so yes, the technique works fine for those as well. I've roasted a couple dry-brined chickens, too. You can get away with salting them for two days or less. I tend to stick to Thomas Keller's chicken roast chicken recipe, tough.


Party Flavor wrote:
SingingWillow wrote:During the first 3 days, Could I use a cooler filled with ice?


Two thoughts:

- I would make very sure the bag doesn't touch the ice. If water from the outside gets in, it could really screw things up. Even if water didn't get in from the outside, I'm not sure ice directly on the bird is a good idea. It might cause issues with condensation, where the salt washes off and just pools in the bag..

- Secondly, I think there may be too much water vapor inside a cooler for the "drying the skin overnight" step. You can skip that, but I think it adds a lot.
No Clicky Blind Linky's!
There is no problem that can’t be solved with a liberal application of sex, tequila, money, or high explosives, not necessarily in that order
I've been kissed by Pixie!
User avatar
Slamdunkpro
Fleet Admiral Briner
 
Posts: 5155
Joined: Sat Jan 21, 2006 6:11 pm
Location: Northern Virginia

Re: Dry Brining Turkey

Postby Pixietoes » Sat Nov 26, 2011 8:28 pm

We didn't make our turkey until today, but it always comes out perfectly following this method. I'm so glad to have something I like better than wet brining and/or deep frying the turkey. By far this method results in the best turkey for the least amount of effort!
“...If you can make a girl laugh - you can make her do anything...” Marilyn Monroe
User avatar
Pixietoes
Mom
 
Posts: 4907
Joined: Thu Aug 05, 2004 1:08 pm
Location: Coca-Cola Land

Re: Dry Brining Turkey

Postby Cheez-Wiz » Sat Nov 26, 2011 10:59 pm

Copied and pasted to my recipe collection

Thanks PF for the tutorial and beautiful picture.
And to Slam, for not letting this go off into the abyss. :)
User avatar
Cheez-Wiz
Commander Briner
 
Posts: 485
Joined: Fri Sep 09, 2005 12:29 am
Location: Dark Side of the Moon

Re: Dry Brining Turkey

Postby Arrianna » Wed May 22, 2013 5:47 pm

I forgot to say thank you for this information 2 Thanksgivings ago. It really made a difference.
Lady Barronmore
User avatar
Arrianna
Vice Admiral Briner
 
Posts: 1676
Joined: Tue Aug 31, 2004 5:26 pm
Location: Southern, Utah

Re: Dry Brining Turkey

Postby Kamidanshir » Wed May 22, 2013 11:55 pm

Arrianna wrote:I forgot to say thank you for this information 2 Thanksgivings ago. It really made a difference.


Wow, a voice from the past! Great to hear from you, hope everything is going well.
Ash nazg durbatuluk, ash nazg gimbatul,
ash nazg thrakatuluk agh burzum-ishi krimpatul
User avatar
Kamidanshir
Dread Pirate Briner
 
Posts: 2671
Joined: Tue Jul 22, 2003 10:55 pm
Location: Eel-infested waters

Re: Dry Brining Turkey

Postby Party Flavor » Tue Nov 26, 2013 10:03 am

A couple changes in protocol over the years...

- The initial, inverted roast is now closer to two hours, rather than one.
- No butter smear/basting. Any liquid or oil on the skin takes you further from crispy.
- Target temp is 145-148 in the breast. Anything above is just drying it out. If the dark meat isn't at 165 by this point, put those pieces back in without the breasts.
An opinionated non-authority, petit four lover, and backward telescope aficionado

I can explain it to you, but I can't understand it for you.

When a chef tells me he is cooking with his grandmother's recipe, I always wonder why. Did talent skip the past two generations?
User avatar
Party Flavor
Admiral Briner
 
Posts: 5027
Joined: Wed Sep 10, 2003 7:32 pm


Return to GEFP College Of Knowledge

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest

cron