During the holidays I cook with lots of butter and alcohol. Well seriously why not? Its one of the few times I can eat eat and eat with no guilt. So If I'm going to pinch those calories for the rest of the year, I might as well go ahead and splurge on the holidays.
So today I'm going to share my TOP SECRET Drunkin Turkey recipe. Seriously.. Its the best Turkey I have ever had, and once I started making this, my Turkey fryer has sat neglected in the garage.
In my house we like to have a Drunkin Turkey Party while we are putting it together. It makes it all the more better.
Ready?.. get some pen and paper.. ill wait.. its a pretty long list.. but so worth it..
2 quarts apple cider
2 cups packed dark brown sugar
2 cups kosher salt
1/4 cup black peppercorns
1 tablespoon juniper berries
4 bay leaves
two 3 inch cinnamon sticks
1 teaspoon whole cloves
4 quarts of dark beer
8 - 10 lb turkey
10 quart cooler
heavy duty CLEAN trash bag
3 cups chopped yellow onions
1 1/2 cups chopped celery
1 1/2 cups chopped carrots
6 garlic cloves peeled and smashed
1 stick of butter
2 tablespoons Cajun seasoning
4 cups chicken stock
Now this is where the fun begins....
Ok.. make sure your cooler is clean, and also your trash bag. I use white, as heavy duty as I can find.. and triple them up.
Put your bag in the cooler.. Inside.. combine the apple cider, beer, brown sugar, salt, peppercorns, juniper berries, bay leaves, cinnamon, and cloves. Stir it up to dissolve the sugar and salt. Place the turkey in the brine in the bag.
*tip* I treat the wings so they are not pointy and puncture my bags.
take your bag.. (it should already be in the cooler) and squeeze the air out of it, that allows the brine to cover your turkey, seal off. Cover it with Ice, close the lid, and let it sit for 36 to 48 hours.
Our cooler sits in the kitchen, and we talk to him, name him and just have fun. The kids decorate the cooler.. It really is a good time.
Getting ready for the big event!!!
Spread the onions, celery, carrots, and garlic in the bottom of a large roasting pan, Add the turkey neck to the bottom of the pan. Preheat the oven to 400 F
Remove the turkey from the brine and rinse. Your going to need some help with this.. Its a bit tricky to coordinate with just one set of hands. Pat dry with paper towels and place on top of the vegetables.
Combine 1 stick of butter and Cajun seasoning in a pan and melt over medium heat. remove it from the heat. With a pastry brush, baste the top and sides of the turkey with half of the butter. Roast for 30 Min
** Please don't cover your turkey, this turkey gets cooked uncovered**
Baste the turkey with the remaining seasoned butter, reduce the oven temp to 300 and roast for 30 min
Baste the turkey with 1/2 cup of chicken stock. Return to the oven and roast until golden and thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the thigh registers 160F
If your turkey starts to get "Dark" spots. take a tiny bit of foil and place over that spot.
Once its reached the temperature, remove from the oven and transfer to a platter or cutting board. Now you tent with foil and let rest for 15-20 min before carving.
I hope you enjoy this Drunkin Turkey as much as my family does.