How long to cure turkey breast?

Discussion in 'Poultry' started by jeff 1, May 16, 2011.

  1. jeff 1

    jeff 1 Smoke Blower

    I have an 8lb turkey breast that I am going to inject and soak in Pops wet cure recipe with 1/2 the salt.  I was thinking 2 days. 
  2. smokinal

    smokinal Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    I guess I don't get out much, but I have never heard of curing a turkey. What do you end up with?
  3. jeff 1

    jeff 1 Smoke Blower

    Just a lil different flavor,  It is basically a brine with cure #1 in it.  I used to work at a old fashioned meat market and we would do a ton of them during the holidays.  Oh and it will be smoked afterwards.
  4. smokinal

    smokinal Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    I'd like to see how it turns out, so when you smoke it don't forget the Q-view.
  5. raptor700

    raptor700 Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    I'm with AL, I want to see the process you use.

    I have wanted to try one but been a little hesitant.

    2 days may not be enough,But someone that knows more than i do will be along to answer your question more precisely.
  6. jeff 1

    jeff 1 Smoke Blower

    Well I figure since I am injecting it and soaking it should not take as long.  Also I will be smokeing it at same temp as if it were not cured so full cure should not be an issue.  Say if I was just brineing it in a normal salt and sugar brine then most people would only go overnight to 1 day for an 8 lb breast.  Only thing I am doing is adding #1 cure to the mix so it will give it a cured meat flavor and texture.    I may go 3 days top
  7. solaryellow

    solaryellow Limited Mod Group Lead

    Having done Pops' brine on a turkey many times before even with injecting, I would give it a minimum of 4 days.
  8. raptor700

    raptor700 Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    Thanks Joel, I new there was an "expert" out there!
  9. raptor700

    raptor700 Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    If your not goin' for the low and looooong smoke then it will be fine,I Brine my turkeys (salt+sugar) for 5 days before smokin'

  10. mac73

    mac73 Newbie

    I have smoked hundreds of turkeys and chickens now.  When curing any type of poultry you want to follow a basic recipe, and from here you can add and spices to your taste.

    you want a container to be able to completly cover your bird or breast with water.

    Add 1 tbs of salt per pound of bird.

    Then I like cutting up an onion in mine, once in a while I subsitute honey for the sugar.

    add everything together make sure sugar and salt are disolved into the water, Place bird into the brine for around 24 hrs.  Keep on ice or in the fridge, then pull out about 1/2 hr before smoking rince and smoke.  It should come out nice and juicey.
  11. jeff 1

    jeff 1 Smoke Blower

    Thanks but I am talking about cureing with sodium nitrite,  not just brineing.
  12. pops6927

    pops6927 Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator Group Lead OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    I've done up to 16 lb turkeys, pickling them for up to a week, but have found that 2 or 3 days is sufficient to get the cure all the way through and still get the flavor without adding excessive salt.  I do pump the breast, one shot on each side, and on a big turkey a shot in each thigh too, allowing it to cure from the inside-out as well as the outside-in.

    A cured and smoked turkey is a delicacy; my dad did them for Christmas and especially for New Year's Eve!  What a delicious way to usher in the New Year!  With it's ham-like flavor and smokey goodness, the delicate tenderness of the breast and the hearty dark meat, the pickling packing tremendous flavor and super moist deliciousness all the way through!





    Sorry, just had to add some pics... the 1000 word thingy.. lol!  Enjoy!
  13. jeff 1

    jeff 1 Smoke Blower

    Thanks Pops[​IMG],  I love your simple wet cure recipe,  I have used it on bacon with a 3/4 the salt and man it was better then any of the dry cured bacon I have made and not to salty, and it is so simple the hardest part makeing room in the fridge to put all my cureing meat[​IMG].  Oh and I love the smoker, makes me want to build one similar to it,   I used to cut meat at an old market that used that style of smokers for cured meats and they work so good,  What kind of temp ranges can you cook at in yours and still maintain desireable smoke?

  14. sylablaw

    sylablaw Newbie


    I love your post and I was wondering if you are able to give me more advice.

    I just recently got into smoking meats. My grandpa in Poland smoked eels for Christmas.Love it.

    I have a smoker in a garden and I was able to achieve temp in a summer of about 200-250F I only have experience in smoking polish sausage and chicken breast. I just got a turkey breast and was doing a search on curing when I came upon this site. I'm planning to use the turkey breast (lbs) using Morton's curing salt, based on the site 3-4 days....How long to you think I should smoke it for? And my only concern is, does it have to reach specific internal temperature in order to be free from bacteria? Please, let me know! Thanks!

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