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Ken's Brined Chicken or Turkey

Ken's Brined Chicken or Turkey

Brining chicken or turkey before cooking keeps it moist and juicy and prevents that terrible "dried out" result.

So let's make the brine. You'll need some pure salt with no additivies. Don't use regular table salt. My favorite is Maldon salt. Also, most brands of Kosher salt are free of additives.

Put a gallon of water in a pot and add 1 cup of your salt. Add a few tablespoons of brown sugar. Then add some peppercorns. Then add any botanicals you like such as Juniper.

Trick: A clever way to get sophisticated botanicals is to add a cup of high quality Gin. Gin? Yes, Gin contains a selection of botanicals that are almost impossible to buy seperately. And don't worry about the alcohol, it boils off. Gin botanicals are legendary.

For example: Bombay Saphire Gin contains these botanicals:

Juniper Berries
Coriander Seeds
Angelica Root
Orris Root
Lemon Peel
Liquorice Root
Cassia Bark
Cubeb Berries
Grains of Paradise

Bring to the boil and stir. Then switch off the heat and allow it to cool to room termperature. You just made brine.

Now pop your chicken into the brine and make sure it's totally covered. Place in refrigerator and let it sit for at least 12 hours but no more than 24.

Remove the chicken, rinse it well and dry it.

Now use it as usual for your favorite chicken recipe.

Tech Notes:
If you're brining a whole turkey (maybe for Thanksgiving) you'll need more than a gallon of brine. Just scale the recipe as needed. Make sure the turkey is totally submerged in the brine. Brine a whole turkey for at least 12 hours but no more than 24. Keep it refrigerated during the brining. Rinse the turkey well after brining. Then cook as usual.

Content written and posted by Ken Abbott
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