Turkey Brine with fresh pressed cider & ginger

turkey.jpg

Ingredients:

1 (14 to 16 pound) frozen young turkey
For the brine:
1 cup kosher salt
1/2 cup light brown sugar

6 cups apple cider
1 gallon turkey or chicken stock
1 tablespoon black peppercorns
1 1/2 teaspoons allspice berries
1 1/2 teaspoons chopped candied ginger
1 gallon iced water


For the aromatics:
2 apples, sliced
1/2 onion, sliced
1 cinnamon stick
1 cup water
4 sprigs rosemary
6 leaves sage
peanut oil

Combine the cider, stock, kosher salt, brown sugar, peppercorns, allspice berries, and candied ginger in a large stockpot over medium-high heat. Stir occasionally to dissolve solids and bring to a boil. Then remove the brine from the heat, cool to room temperature, and refrigerate.


Early on the day or the night before you'd like to eat:
Combine the brine, water and ice in the 5-gallon bucket. Place the thawed turkey (with innards removed) breast side down in brine. If necessary, weigh down the bird to ensure it is fully immersed, cover, and refrigerate or set in cool area for 8 to 16 hours, turning the bird once half way through brining if necessary.


Preheat the oven to 475 degrees F. Remove the bird from brine and rinse inside and out with cold water. Discard the brine.


Place the bird on roasting rack inside a half sheet pan and pat dry with paper towels.
Combine the apples, onion, cinnamon stick, and 1 cup of water in a microwave safe dish and microwave on high for 5 minutes. Add steeped aromatics to the turkey's cavity along with the rosemary and sage. Tuck the wings underneath the bird and coat the skin liberally with peanut oil.


Roast the turkey on lowest level of the oven at 475 degrees F for 25-30 minutes. Insert a probe thermometer into thickest part of the breast and reduce the oven temperature to 325 degrees F. Set the thermometer alarm (if available) to 161 degrees F. A 14 to 16 pound bird should require a total of 2 to 2 1/2 hours of roasting. Let the turkey rest, loosely covered with foil for about 15 minutes before carving.