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Thanksgiving turkey brine/ marinade

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Ive tried all of the common methods for cooking my Thanksgiving turkey.  Stuffed, un-stuffed each with different seasonings. in an oven bag, deep fried then injected and deep fried.  Back in 2006 I gave brining a try and Ill never do anything else. My concoction is more of a mix between a marinade and a brine ( A true brine is salt and water, meant to preserve foods) My mixture starts with a 6 pack of a decent winter ale,  (I use Sam adams winter ale)I add brown sugar, honey, salt ( the brine angle) peppercorns, cloves,and apple cider, sometimes wedges of apples cut up.  I mix all ingredients and bring to a boil 6 days before thanksgiving and have a frozen turkey. The next evening I add the frozen bird to the mixture in a large pot and add enough cold water to completely submerge the turkey in the liquid and cover it. The trick over the next 4 days is to make sure the temperature never rise above 40 degrees. Hopefully, you have room in your refrigerator  but if you dont, you can add Ice during the days and keep it on an outsige porch at night if you live in a cold enough climate. Sometimes mother nature helps and temps fall right where you want them.  Rinse the turkey off inside and out and cook unstuffed according to normal roasting guidelines. Youll find that the entire bird if full of flavor like youve never had before

Recipe:

Davids Turkey Brine recipeMake this recipe 6 days before you need to serve the turkey

6 pack winter beer

1 half gallon apple cider or 6 cut up apples

2 cup honey

2 cups salt

2 cups brown sugar

3 tablespoons peppercorns

ice cold water

Bring all ingredients except water to boil in extra large pot

Simmer on low for 1 hour

Turn off heat and let cool to room temp

Next day Place frozen turkey in brine and top off if needed with cold water

Keep covered and in cool area between 33-40 degrees for 4-  41/2 days

Rinse turkey inside and out

Cook unstuffed at 325 for 20-25 minutes per pound covered with foil

Remove foil for last 20 minutes to brown

Try different beers, but keep with full flavored beers.

What Mrchimneyman does in his spare time?

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My 2 most favorite things to do when Im not working or doing my duty as a husband of my beautiful wife Melissa, or father to my twin 15 year old daughters Erin and Allison, is to Cook and Golf.

I am a creator in the kitchen, I dream up recipe concoctions during my work day or even in my sleep and experiment with my ideas when I have time at home

Today, I spent time thinking about a few recipes that I like and how I could combine them into a great new dish.

How could I take a gourmet mac n cheese, and combine it with a great spinach soup recipe that I have with tons of butter, and cheeses including cream cheese, jarlsburg swiss and fontana cheeses?

My cooking mostly starts caramelized onions, Not sugar added, not soda added, but rather cooking the onions so slowly that you drive out the moisture, and then change starches to sugar.  See my video lesson here

So tonight, I boiled about 3 cups of chicken broth in a large pot, added 3 bags of baby spinach, 2 tablespoons minced garlic, a cup of caramelized onion, various steak seasoning spices, teaspoon of crushed red pepper, 2 cups heavy cream, a stick of butter, a large wedge of jarlsburg swiss cheese and another of fontana cheese probably about 2 cups shredded of each and cooked through about 10 minutes

Cooked a box of penne pasta for only 5 minutes then threw the pasta into a large casserole dish with the cheese sauce mixture, some shredded chicken from a previous roasted chicken meal topped with a cup of shredded pecorini romano cheese and baked for 45 minutes.

Dont worry about under cooking the penne- it sucks in the liquidy cheese sauce and turns out perfect

Dont be afraid to explore…. Change from spinach to broccoli or another vegetable you crave, change the cheeses you use, go without meat or change to another meat or even seafood.

Feel free to contact me if you have questions or comments about my recipe creations

Enjoy!