In regular Doin’ the Most fashion, we make turkey in a somewhat unconventional way. This deconstructed bird cooks faster and better than a whole bird. It’s beautiful on the platter and convenient for sandwiches! While it will require a couple of days of brining time, the wait is worth it.
Turkey is tough to do right. Brining really is the key to getting a juicy, flavorful bird. Turkey is a blank canvas. Your brine is your palette. This has been BC’s go-to turkey recipe for several years now, and it never fails to impress.
Be certain to watch the how-to video prior to making this turkey, as it goes in-depth on how to disassemble the bird and contains an extra step to prepare the legs with a little added flair. Enjoy!Print
Brined Thanksgiving Turkey
A delightful sweet, savory, and well-balanced turkey cooked to perfection. But it takes a little extra time and effort!
- 4 quarts water
- 3 cups dark brown sugar
- 1 cup soy sauce
- 3/4 cup sea salt
- 8 whole peeled garlic cloves, smashed
- 6 bay leaves
- 3 sprigs thyme
- 3 sprigs rosemary
- 2 tsp black pepper
- 1 cup bourbon
- 2 oz organic maple extract (no alcohol)
- Place two (of the four) quarts of water in stockpot or Dutch oven.
- Add all other ingredients except for the maple extract.
- Bring to a boil and stir to combine.
- Turn off the burner, remove from heat.
- Add maple extract and remaining two quarts of water.
- Break down the bird.
- Brine turkey breast meat for 48 hours and dark meat for 24 hours.
- Remove from brine, dry meat and allow to rest one hour.
- Preheat oven to 425F.
- Heat up an oven-safe skillet (cast iron preferred) over medium-high heat with a tablespoon of oil.
- Place breast portion skin-side down in the skillet and place in the oven. Cook for 30 minutes.
- Prepare dry, unsalted stuffing in a roasting pan.
- Remove breast from oven, flip skin-side up onto the stuffing. Place legs on stuffing and push stuffing beneath the bird so no stuffing is exposed. Brush legs with vegetable oil, salt lightly.
- Roast in oven for 30 minute more.
- Reduce oven temp to 350F and cook an additional 40 minutes. Begin checking internal temp of the turkey.
- Cooking is complete when the internal temp reaches 165F.
- Rest turkey on cutting board 30 minutes before carving.