24 November 2008

How's your bird?

Again this year, we're hosting Thanksgiving.

I love this particular holiday as I fancy myself quite the cook and I annually get raves about my brined turkey. It's actually a pretty easy holiday in that it's only there to eat and there's no worries about gifts or having to be in multiple locations.

Thanksgiving for us has been the bringing together of the two sets of in-laws and it's a really nice night. We get to fancy up the dining room (we only use it for T-give and maybe a few other limited events), pull out the china and the Waterford and act like big-time adults.

This year, of course, we have a special guest in a high chair who gets to be at his first. The "year of firsts" is quickly coming to an end and its like it just STARTED. We know he likes chicken and turkey already so I'm sure he'll have fun.

So back to my brining. It really means that I start working on Tuesday night. After getting all of the ingredients into a pot, you need to bring it to a rolling boil and then put it into the fridge to cool off. Then, 24 hours prior to when you're going to start cooking the bird, you have to put the bird into the brine and back into the fridge. What this does is infuse the bird with some salt and other aromatics and after it's done cooking, it retains a lot of juiciness and flavor.

I think the only change this year is that we're going for a bigger bird (23 pounder). We really didn't have that much leftover last year and that's one of our favorite things. Turkey sammies the day after are boss and I might even want to try my hand at making some Turkey a la King. So upward and onward to a bigga bird.

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