While our relationship with his cousin Kevs started off strained, there has never been anything but love between us and Brian. That probably had something to do with the fact we were wooing him to bring Kevs down.
Despite our nefarious plot to use Brian as our pawn, the sweet, delightful guy won us over and helped us heal our issues with Kevin and our broken dreams.
Brian has always had to struggle what with his heart defect and vocal cord dysphonia, yet he has always handled himself with such grace and kindness. Being our polar opposite, we find that intriguing and exciting and have endeavoured to stay close ever since.
Don’t tell him, but we secretly tried to bring down Nick after he bullied him due to his vocal cord issues – no one messes with our sweet, delicate angel. (We made up though obviously, we had to find someone to help us bring Bindi down).
Our friendship with Brian, and I don’t think I am overstating this, has been the most nourishing, fulfilling and generous (non-sexual) relationship in our lives which made our thanksgiving menu planning a breeze.
I mean, what is more nourishing and fulfilling than a Brined Littrell Turkey?
While turkey and the rest of its friends in the poultry family have a nasty habit of going dry, a perfectly brined bird maintains the moistness of the meat and infuses it with a flavour you can’t resist.
Brined Littrell Turkey
4 cups water
¾ cup maldon salt
½ cup honey
4 cups salt-reduced chicken stock
1 tbsp peppercorns
8 sprigs fresh rosemary, to brine
fresh turkey, size 50, neck and giblets removed for the gravy (discard liver)
1 small onion, peeled and quartered
1 fuji apple, quartered
1 bulb garlic, halved
4 sprigs rosemary, for baking
⅓ cup olive oil
The day before you plan to eat, make the brine by bringing the water, salt, honey, stock, peppercorns and rosemary to the boil in a large saucepan, stirring to dissolve salt. Cool to room temperature.
Once cooled, place brine mixture in a large clean bucket or pot and add 4 litres of iced water. Place turkey in the liquid, breast side down to avoid tit-soup, cover and refrigerate overnight, ensuring the turkey is fully submerged. You may need to add more cold water.
To roast the turkey, preheat oven to 160C.
Remove turkey from brine (discard the liquid, definitely don’t drink it) and rinse thoroughly, inside and out, with cool water and dry thoroughly. Season the turkey cavity with salt and pepper and stuff with onion, apple, garlic and rosemary. Place on a roasting rack inside a large roasting pan, tucking the wings back. Rub the turkey with oil and season with salt and pepper. Cover the breast portion with foil and place on the lowest rack in oven (aka the only one that will allow it to fit) and roast for two hours.
Remove the foil and increase the heat up to 220C and roast for a further 45 minutes. Remove the turkey from the oven and insert a thermometer between the breast and thigh (avoiding bones), if it is 75C it is ready.
Remove turkey from the pan, place on a large platter and tent with foil to rest for 20 minutes. Carve, devour, etc.