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For the Birds 

New kit makes brining a holiday turkey easy and convenient

There are many theories about the best way to make a turkey juicy and flavorful, but Chef Brett Alexander of Big EZ Food has added two things to his favorite process that other methods lack -- ease and convenience.

The chef and entrepreneur advocates flavoring the uncooked turkey -- the process also can be used for fish and other meats -- by placing it in a solution of water, salt and seasonings, which are pulled into the turkey by osmosis and are distributed evenly throughout the meat, making every bite equally flavorful.

Alexander's company offers Bird-Brine, a kit that includes a soft-pack cooler and five flavors of seasonings that make the process of brining a large bird simple. The cooler also frees up space in the refrigerator for other holiday dishes. Big EZ Food introduced it's first Bird-Brine kit last year, but this holiday season replaced the original plastic brining pail with a soft-pack cooler that doesn't require refrigeration and also can be used for other things when you're not preparing a bird for cooking.

Bird-Brine is available with seasonings in five flavors, including classic, Cajun, barbecue, rosemary and garlic, and lemon pepper with dill. The kit also comes with five bags and twist-ties for marinating as well as an instruction booklet with brining tips, directions and recipes. The cooler is about 11 1/2 inches square, and the seasoning packets each contain more than 11 1/2 ounces of spiced mixture. The cost is about $40.

The Bird-Brine cooler kits and individual seasoning packages are available at The Savvy Gourmet (4519 Magazine St., 895-2665; www.savvygourmet.com), Martin Wine Cellar (714 Elmeer Ave., Metairie, 896-7300; www.martinwine.com), Dorignac's Food Center (710 Veterans Memorial Blvd., Metairie, 834-8216; www.dorignacs.com), Robert Fresh Market (5016 W. Esplanade Ave., Metairie, 885-7005) and Langenstein's (800 Metairie Road, Metairie, 831-6682; 1330 Arabella St., 899-9283).

click to enlarge SARA ESSEX
  • Sara Essex
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