If you volunteered to cook the turkey this year and you’re feeling nervous about serving a dry bird, we have a bit of advice for you: brine it! Turkey is naturally a very lean bird and without the extra fat, it’s easy for the meat to become dry and tough. Giving a turkey a 24-hour soak in a brining solution is a fool-proof way to prevent dryness and to boost flavor.
Remove the bag of giblets from the turkey and set aside. Heat 6-8 cups of the water, then stir in the salt & brown sugar until dissolved. Set this mixture aside and allow to return to room temperature. Place the turkey into the brining vessel and add all ingredients. Add additional water, if needed, to cover the turkey. Cover the brining vessel and refrigerate (or leave outside on a cold porch/patio) for 24 hours. About a half-hour before you plan to cook the turkey, remove it from the brine and pat it dry. Allow it to sit on its roasting rack until it reaches room temp and the skin is nice and dry. Stuff the cavity with some of your brining components, if desired. Cook turkey as usual, keeping mind that you won’t want to add additional salt.