Vegetarians look away! Raw turkey flesh photographed in poor lighting adorns this post. Photography lovers might as well look away too.
We’re having a Room Painting and Turkey Roasting Thanksgiving this weekend. We’re taking advantage of the stretch of uninterrupted days to get a chance to paint the bathroom. Finally. It’s been an unattractive beige for more years than I’d like to admit. In order to spend more time painting and less time cleaning up in the kitchen we’re taking a few shortcuts (boxed stuffing, can shaped cranberry) that I’d like to think of as nostalgia rather than outright laziness. I am from the Midwest after all, these are the traditional dishes as I remember them. But I couldn’t pass up the chance to cook a turkey for the first time.
I bought this one from Bob’s Quality Meats in my neighborhood. It’s been there for three generations, I hear, and the sign is a fixture. I have to admit that I was intimidated going in for the first time but I was greeted cheerfully and instantly fell in love. Yay for awesome and old school local butchers! I was a little late in ordering my turkey and ended with the 10-12 pound range. Mine came out to be closer to 12 pounds. Gulp.
Just as I was realizing I needed to learn to brine a turkey Savory Sweet Life came out with this perfect Easy Turkey Brine Recipe. I had been thinking I was going to need to buy a cooler to brine my turkey but Alice points out that the lower drawer of a fridge is just the right size for this. She uses a plastic turkey sized oven bag, brilliant.
The photo above marks the point that Scott saved Thanksgiving. I tentatively poked around the turkey and pulled out the neck but couldn’t find the giblets. So I shrugged and started pouring the brine over the top (that’s the little green bits you’re seeing). Scott decided to keep looking and, other turkey noobs take note!, found the bag of giblets tucked in the neck cavity. Thank you Scott, you’re my hero.
I washed the bottom drawer of our fridge very carefully, though I’m happy to report it was very clean following a massive and likely Hoarders-inspired scrub down of the interior of the fridge last summer. Should it spill all the brine will end up in the drawer and not, hooray, dripping down other stuff in the fridge.
And there it sits in the fridge. Tomorrow I’ll turn it over. So far so good.