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Old 11-29-2004, 02:47 PM   #11
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I am still too chicken to do more than salt, sugar and a very few herbs. I will say though that I found the difference between just salt and salt AND sugar to be dramatic. When you try it next time, will you let us know what you think Otter?
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Old 11-29-2004, 02:54 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Alix
I am still too chicken to do more than salt, sugar and a very few herbs. I will say though that I found the difference between just salt and salt AND sugar to be dramatic. When you try it next time, will you let us know what you think Otter?
Will do. When you say "sugar" was it brown sugar?
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Old 11-29-2004, 03:11 PM   #13
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I was a little worried that the bird would end up tasting very spiced; after all I used some very strong tasting herbs with the ginger, cinnamon, sage, and rosemary. I think though that they actually helped enhance the flavor of the bird, making the flavor of the turkey itself more pronouced. IMO herbs are highly recommended.
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Old 11-29-2004, 03:11 PM   #14
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I have to add my 2 cents :roll:

I brined in apple juice (mostly) and added some water - then I added sald, brown sugar, fresh rosemary, fresh thyme, fresh bay leaves, smashed garlic, cut oranges, limes, lemons (I think that's all). When I cooked it I put a cut up Granny Smith apple and about 1/2 - 3/4 cup dry sherry in the cavity.

I started brining Tuesday, removed on Wednesday, sat in fridge overnight to dry - I decided to try cooking it upside down this time.

It was WONDERFUL!!!!!!!!! When I turned it over I WAS going to brown it on top but it was fine and the legs just fell away - it was the most tender bird I have done yet.

BUT I also used a Butterball which had a small amount of brine in it too. When I went to make the gravy I had to add a LOT of milk to counteract the saltiness - but the gravy was the best gravy too - so it all worked out!
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Old 11-29-2004, 05:34 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Otter
Quote:
Originally Posted by Alix
I am still too chicken to do more than salt, sugar and a very few herbs. I will say though that I found the difference between just salt and salt AND sugar to be dramatic. When you try it next time, will you let us know what you think Otter?
Will do. When you say "sugar" was it brown sugar?
Yes Otter, brown sugar. Equal portions of sugar and salt.
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Old 11-29-2004, 05:37 PM   #16
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Alix,

Don't be afraid to use a lot of herbs - (I forgot to mention that I also used a lot of fresh sage) - none of these flavors overpower the bird - even as much apple juice as I used only produced a great flavor - not a strong apple flavor (made the bird a funky color though before it was cooked :oops: - my DH said - that bird looks old).

All these flavors produced just that - a great flavor - with nothing standing out.
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Old 12-01-2004, 12:47 AM   #17
 
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Sorry I can't resist, but "beer-butting" birds with cranberry juice variants "pinks them up" in the meat and I expect that using this in lieu of water for brining would do the same...

Its sort of "neat" to note the kudos for the sugar in the brine (and I dunno where I heard of it, its sure wasn't my invention!)...the fruit juice would certainly add to this...

I have studied a lot of the posts on the Board and a lot of my own "notes" on cooking, and have not seen even one that said the bird tasted "sweet", let alone "too sweet"...that would "argue" on not using some form of "sweetener" in the brine...

A late night "wild hare" would be who amongst us will be bold enough to pour a half bottle of rum into the brine as the sweetening agent?

Since the boiling of the brining mixture is brief, and I, at least, if not most of "us" "shock" it back with ice cubes, the dispersion of "herbal oils" from sage, rosemary, thyme, etc is probably pretty minimal, I doubt that it will be possible to "over-herb" a bird...there's not been one complaint in this line on this board, let alone others...I think the technique of brining that we are sort of "timidly" entering would have to be wildly different to state that the meat tasted "too much of sage" (or anything else!)

Just a few thoughts, that you guys might want to toss around...

Lifter

(Revelating that there's a chicken in the freezer that I could "torture test"!) Anyone got any "big fears" or concepts? I'll sacrifice this bird to anyone's "fear factor" and record, carefully, the quantities and qualities, as best I can, if you want!

Lifter
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Old 12-01-2004, 07:16 AM   #18
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A Strong Teriyaki marinade might give a nice twist to the flavor. But be aware that it will only affect the outermost laryer of meat, and so will be relatively mild, unless injected into the meat, and even then, shouldn't be overpowering.

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