This is hands down the best turkey I have ever tasted. It was bursting with moisture and smoky flavor and super tender too. Sodium level in the meat was perfect. No bland turkey here, and no need for any sauce or adornment. Perfect!
Smoked Turkey Breast
Photo: Jody Horton; Styling: Heather Chadduck Hillegas
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Total: 10 Hours, 5 Minutes
- 1 (64-oz.) bottle apple cider
- 3/4 cup kosher salt (such as Diamond Crystal)
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
- 3 (4-inch) fresh thyme sprigs
- 2 (4-inch) fresh rosemary sprigs
- 10 fresh sage leaves
- 1 garlic bulb, cut in half crosswise
- 4 cups ice cubes
- 1 (5 3/4- to 6-lb.) bone-in turkey breast
- 4 hickory wood chunks
- 1. Bring cider and next 7 ingredients to a boil in a large stockpot or 8-qt. Dutch oven over medium-high heat; reduce heat to medium, and simmer, stirring occasionally, 5 minutes. Remove from heat. Stir in ice. Cool completely (1 hour).
- 2. Place turkey in brine; cover and chill 5 to 12 hours.
- 3. Prepare smoker according to manufacturer's directions, bringing internal temperature to 225° to 250°; maintain temperature 15 to 20 minutes. Place wood chunks on coals.
- 4. Remove turkey from brine, and pat dry with paper towels. Smoke turkey, maintaining temperature inside smoker between 225° and 250°, for 3 1/2 to 4 hours or until a meat thermometer inserted into thickest portion registers 165°.
- 5. Remove turkey, cover loosely with aluminum foil, and let stand 10 to 15 minutes before slicing.
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