Looking to spice up your Thanksgiving bird? Try this twist on your typical Turkey brine. It might just become your new Thanksgiving tradition!
2 gallons Water
1/2 cup Salt
1 750ml bottle good-quality Bourbon (if you wouldn’t drink it, don’t cook with it)
1 1/2 cups Brown Sugar
2 cups roughly-chopped Mirepoix (Carrots, Celery, and Onions)
12 Garlic cloves, smashed and peeled
6 Bay Leaves
1 bunch fresh Thyme
1 bunch fresh Sage
1 tbsp whole black Peppercorns
1/4 cup Juniper Berries
3 Cinnamon Sticks (optional because I don’t like cinnamon)
1 fresh, whole Turkey
In a large stock pot, bring all ingredients to a simmer for 10 minutes. Cool to, at least, room temperature. Brine whole raw turkey for 24 hours minimum. Leave all of the veggies and spices in the brine with the turkey.
DO NOT ADD THE TURKEY TO THE BRINE UNTIL THE BRINE IS COOLED!
Remove turkey from brine, drain, pat dry, season with desired spices, and bake in a roasting pan at 325 degrees for 15-20 minutes per pound. My thoughts on basting, covering, and other cooking methods can be found by clicking here.