Dry versus wet bring. Which is better? More efficient? Which is easier? Every year there is always some one trying to dis the idea of wet brining. Like it was just thought up a few years ago or something. I am certain the Chinese and Scandinavians would take issue with that as they have practiced it for a 1,000 years or longer. Here’s a lovely piece from Buzzfeed that causes me to post about it. I wrote about wet brining last year…HERE.
IF you can get past the obvious click bait words, “stupid” and “wrong” and ignore the “why my idea is better” atmosphere of the buzzfeed article then we can actually talk about different ways to prep your turkey.
My wife cooks the Thanksgiving turkey at our house. I usually cook a duck, small turkey or chicken, and this year I am throwing in a rack of ribs as well! My wife typically does wet brining. And I know why, cause it works for her. She found a recipe (egad! who follows recipes?!?!) online a few years back. Her turkeys are great. I typically do whatever I feel like at the time. Dry brine sometimes, wet brine other times. I hate the tone of the above linked buzzfeed article but I think it is fair in asking why should we have to go thru the wet brine process if we can find another way that would make us happy? Not wrong. Not Stupid, just another way. Did you know that ButterBall used to inject the turkeys with butter? Hence the name? They don’t do that anymore but you can do it! Forget the brine all together, inject that bird with butter!
Anyways, I am making this post because if you are researching brining I don’t want you to use the buzzfeed link as an information tool for wet and/or dry bringing. I want you to view the following two pages before you set you virgin brining eyes on that click bait craze buzzfeed article.
AMAZINGRIBS.COM Ultimate Smoked Turkey
by: Meathead Goldwyn
This page has a plethera of information. Ignore the “smoked” part of the link. It has tons of turkey info. All pretty much proven by science. This page has some kicks ass, I mean kick ass information. I am not partial, I swear. 🙂
The Food Lab: Turkey Brining Basics
This page does a great job of explaining wet brining and is written by a serious chef, not a blogger like me. Yeah yeah, the author of that buzzfeed article is likely more educated than me on the topic. But I promise not an expert. A simple question for qualifying anyone is, would you allow your lawyer to call them in as an expert witness? LOL Anyway this site also talks about a lower “done” temperature like 140*-150*. I think internal temp is one of the biggest players in making meats dry. That’s an obvious statement, I know. But you are told to cook your turkey to 165* (FDA item #3). AND if you read that AmazingRib write up you’ll see those pop up temp thingies are just a “tad” wrong.
Don’t forget our Food Science expert Alton Brown! You don’t like Alton? Put your mouse or finger over the small x in the top right corner and never come back to this site again. Please. Here is Alton’s Thanksgiving page (tagged keyword site LOL) HERE. He also did a video on Brine Thawing. A clever way of thawing your turkey and brining at the same time. View Site link HERE or the Facebook Video Link HERE
Any way you shake your turkey leg, have fun and do test runs. And remember, the recipe is only for guidance. Get a feel for what works and start messing around with what you got until you are happy! Happy Thanksgiving!!