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Malibu Beach Recovery Diet: A Perfect Moist Bird

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Malibu Beach Recovery Diet: A Perfect Moist Bird

By Chef Licia Jaccard
In Recipes

happy thanksgiving stampThanksgiving is here and I hope you are prepared. But if you are not then that is OK. I might have a tip for you to make your Thanksgiving memorable. The one thing that I hear every year over and over is complaints about a dry turkey. So being a chef I do get asked every year, “How do I make a perfect moist turkey?”

The trick is brining. The great thing about brining is that even if you over cook your turkey, it will still come out moist. When you brine, you are soaking the turkey over night in a solution of water, salt, sugar and any other added flavors to absorb into your bird. But since we are cooking with a low glycemic diet we will be substituting the sugar with agave. It is not the water that makes the bird moist, but it is the chemical reaction the salt makes in the protein of the meat that keeps the juices in the meat and stops the juices from leaking out of the bird.
So if you follow this simple tip this year and from now on you too can make your Thanksgivings memorable.

Brining a Turkey

16-22 lb Turkey
1 gallon boiling water
1.5 cup kosher salt
1.5 cups agave
4 bay leaves
1 orange (only the skin cut off the orange)
6 rosemary sprigs
15 thyme sprigs
3 tablespoons peppercorns whole
4 garlic cloves minced
1 gallon ice water

5 gallon bucket or large stock pot

Boil 1 gallon of water with all the ingredients in it except the gallon of ice water. Boil for 20 minutes stirring occasionally. Pour this brine into your bucket or stock pot. Add in the gallon of ice water and stir. When the brine is at room temperature you can add your turkey to the brine.

The brine should cover your turkey. If it doesn’t the add enough water so that the turkey is fully submerged.

Place in your refrigerator for 6-8 hours. It is best to do this the night before you roast your turkey.

Take the turkey out 1 hour before cooking and drain out the brine liquid and discard everything else. Pat the turkey with paper towels till it is dry all around.

Roasted Turkey

4 Tbsp melted butter
2 Tbsp paprika
1 Tbsp ground pepper
3 Tbsp chopped rosemary
3 Tbsp chopped thyme leaves
1 apple quartered
1 bunch parsley
1 onion quartered
6 spring of rosemary
10 sprigs of thyme

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees

Your turkey should be dry now. Pour melted butter over turkey and distribute evenly. Sprinkle the paprika, pepper, rosemary and pepper over the buttered bird. Do NOT add anymore salt since your turkey has been brined in a salt solution.

Stuff the turkey with parsley, apples, onion, thyme and rosemary. Place the turkey on a roasting rack on a roasting pan breast side up.

Put the turkey in the oven for 15 minutes. Then drop the temperature to 325 degrees. You should cook your turkey for 13-15 minutes per lb. A 16 lb turkey should cook for 3 hours 28 minutes to 4 hours. Stick a meat thermometer in the thigh about 1 inch in to get a correct read on the bird.

Bon Appetit.

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