We have used this turkey brine recipe several times (we smoke our turkeys) and I wanted to share in case anyone was making a turkey for Christmas Dinner. You will need lots of room in a fridge or a big cooler to do this.
Adapted from: The Neelys on Food Network
1 gallon water
1 cups salt, we use kosher
3 cups apple juice
1 cup bourbon
1 T black peppercorms
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 turkey (approx 22 lbs)
Heat water & salt on stove top until the salt is dissolved (the heat helps dissolve the salt). Add the salt water to the apple juice, bourbon, peppercorns and sugar in a 5 gallon bucket lined with a resealable bag, make sure the sugar dissovles fully.
Add turkey to the brine. In a garbage bag-lined ice chest filled with ice, place the bucket in and surround with ice. Keep in a cool place and let brine for 6 hours (or overnight). Turn the turkey after 3 hours. Remove turkey and pat dry with paper towels.
Rub the turkey with olive oil and massage a rub onto the turkey. We use a rub that we purchase from the grocery store -- The Salt Lick Rub (it is a local bbq place).