Tips for Perfect La Caja China Turkeys
~Chef Perry Perkins~
Always, always, always brine your turkeys (or chickens) before roasting! The differences in the flavor, the tenderness, and the juiciness of the meat are indescribable.
To brine one turkey, bring 1 quart of water to a simmer, add salt and sugar, stir to dissolve completely. Add 3 quarts of very cold water to cool.
Place turkeys in a water-tight container, large enough to allow a little space around each, and pour the cooled brine over the turkeys, add more cold water to cover (if needed).
Move turkeys to a cold area, or refrigerate 8-10 hours.
Discard brine and rinse turkeys thoroughly, before prepping for roasting.
I know I’m a bit of a broken record on this subject, but it really is important.
Lifting the lid from the box effectively removes all the cooking heat, and it takes a LONG time to build back up, as
your turkey is cooling at the same time.
Use a remote probe thermometer in the thickest part of the thigh, and (personal opinion) a metal dust pan and scoop to remove the ashes, instead of removing the lid. NEVER lift the lid until your turkey has reached “resting temp”…which is 10-15F below your target finished temperature.
As a third-generation chef, Perry P. Perkins focuses his love of cooking on barbeque, traditional southern fare, and fresh Northwest cuisine.
Perry runs the non-profit organization, MY KITCHEN Outreach Program, which teaches nutrition, shopping, and hands on cooking classes for at risk youth.
His cookbooks include La Caja China Cooking, La Caja China World, La Caja China Party, and the NEW “La Caja China Grill.”
You can follow the rest of Chef Perry’s cooking adventures at ChefPerryPerkins.com