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Old 11-16-2006, 12:40 PM   #1
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Brining a Butterball Turkey?

I got a not-frozen Butterball turkey at Costco to smoke for Thanksgiving and have a couple of questions. I had been planning to brine the turkey before smoking. Then I read someone's comments that they thought that kosher and Butterball turkeys has already been brined. I also read someone else's comment to look for a turkey that was marked 'minimally processed' and it probably would not have already been brined. This Butterball turkey does not say anything about being brined and it is marked 'minimally processed'.

Any suggestions?

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Old 11-16-2006, 12:42 PM   #2
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I personally have never used a butterball, but my sister does. From what I understand, they have stuff in them already so brining would be superfluous.
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Old 11-16-2006, 12:46 PM   #3
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I am with Alix. I believe they are already brined. I would call Butterball and ask them though. They will be able to tell you exactly what, if anything, was done to the bird.
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Old 11-16-2006, 01:01 PM   #4
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Butterball.com says their turkeys are 'basted', whatever that means, so they don't need to be brined.

I suppose you could brine with some specially flavored brine and add some new flavors.
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Old 11-16-2006, 01:05 PM   #5
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I just called Butterball because I was curious (1-800-butterball). The woman who answered said that their fresh turkeys are not brined, but the frozen ones are.

I also asked what "minimally processed" means. She said that is means that the only things done to it are that it is cleaned. Nothing is added (including brine).
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Old 11-16-2006, 01:14 PM   #6
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Thanks, GB. That info differs from what's on their website. At least the terminology is different.
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Old 11-16-2006, 01:16 PM   #7
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Yeah it looks like the site is trying to avoid the word "brine" for some reason. Instead they went with "deep basted".
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Old 11-16-2006, 01:48 PM   #8
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Adding another--they are brined/ injected.
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Old 11-16-2006, 02:35 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GB
Yeah it looks like the site is trying to avoid the word "brine" for some reason. Instead they went with "deep basted".

I'd bet it's the fear of salt issue.
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Old 11-16-2006, 02:47 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gretchen
Adding another--they are brined/ injected.
No not all of them are.

Like GB says, Butterball's "fresh" turkeys are not brined.

I have brined many of them over the years.

Their "fresh" turkeys can be held at temperatures as low as 28 degrees, so they will probably appear at least slightly frozen. But not as frozen 100 solid as their other birds.

CHECK THE LABEL. It must say if it's been treated with a solution. I wouldn't look for "minimally processed" or any othe euphamism -- it'll say pretty clearly if it's been injected with "broth" or sodium solution.
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