Monday, November 29, 2010

Pom Brine for my Thanksgiving Turkey

A beautiful deep burgundy hue formed around my bird this year.  Slow roasted (250 degrees in a roasting pan) to an internal temperature of 170 degrees, the bird looked wonderful!

But the brining insured a moist juicy bird.  In my opinion, brining your bird is probably the single most important thing a home cook can do to get a consistent restaurant quality turkey.  It's not to early to plan for Christmas.  

Be honest, was your bird just a bit too dry this year?

Here's what I did to mine...

juice from 3 Pomegranates (About 4 cups)
1 gallons water
1 gallon worth of ice
1 1/2 cups kosher Salt
15 black peppercorns cracked
6 bay leaves
1/2 cup "Not Your Grandmothers Herbes de Provence" Mediterranean Herb mix
1/4 cup "Sodom and Gomorrah" Salt-Garlic-Sesame Seed Spice mix
4 stems of Rosemary stripped

I have a cooler that i use as a dedicated brine pan.  they also make food safe brining bags, or a VERY LARGE stock pot will work.  What ever size you need to get the bird totally submersed.

Start with a totally thawed bird.  You should make sure all the stuffing bits are removed and the cavities are empty.

Next, boil the water, add the salt and be sure that all has dissolved.  Remove from the heat.  Add the remaining ingredients and mix.  Put the bird in the brining vessel, pour the brine into the vessel and be sure you have enough to cover.  Add more water if needed.

I brine turkeys overnight, up to 16 hours.  When you remove the bird, be sure to rinse several times before roasting.

I am sorry I don't have a photo of the whole bird, but it was BEAUTIFUL!  Just the right look of crispy burgundy hue.  But the taste was the winner.  The seasonings were perfect and most important, the juices from the bird were locked in.  No over cooked, over done, over dry bird for me!


  1. That looks great! I love the color!

  2. I never would have thought about using the POM as a brine! Nice going Dave. I cooked my 2nd turkey and was very pleased I didn't over cook it!

    And I didn't comment yesterday, but I loved the rainbow cake you made, what a fun project to do with the kids. I love it!

  3. Gorgeous! Sounds and looks scrumptious! Smoked one and roasted one, this year. Doing seafood and a ham for Christmas! :)

  4. Your turkey and all of your food looks marvelous Dave. We are still on the road so it is hard to take time to blog, but I am doing the kitchen reveal tomorrow morning. See if some of the Krazy Kitchen girls are interested in participating. Looking forward to seeing your new kitchen.

  5. Yeah, you can't beat brining for a juicilicous bird. The Pom did infuse a deep color didn't it?