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Trader Joe's Brined Turkeys - what do you think? [moved from Boston board]

gltsoi Nov 15, 2007 09:16 AM

I love the idea of brining, but am just too lazy to do the work. I usually get around this by buying a kosher bird, which is delicious and moist, but pricer. I saw that TJ's is selling a pre-brined bird for $1.69/lb. Has anyone had good/bad/indifference experience with them from previous years?


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  1. Luther RE: gltsoi Nov 15, 2007 10:06 AM

    As you say, kosher is pre-brined. Also, Butterball and other mass-market frozen turkeys are brined.

    1. BobB RE: gltsoi Nov 15, 2007 11:12 AM

      Whole Foods will brine any turkey you buy from them at no extra charge. Certainly not as cheap as TJ's, but you can get free-range birds if that matters to you.

      4 Replies
      1. re: BobB
        Luther RE: BobB Nov 15, 2007 12:58 PM

        It is extra charge, because they charge you the same per-pound price for a brined turkey as a non-brined turkey.

        1. re: Luther
          BobB RE: Luther Nov 16, 2007 06:09 AM

          Is that true? I did this last year and I was pretty sure they charged me on the pre-brined weight.

          1. re: BobB
            Luther RE: BobB Nov 16, 2007 07:58 AM

            Deja vu all over again...


            1. re: Luther
              BobB RE: Luther Nov 16, 2007 09:59 AM

              Hmm, forgot about that. Still, the original question about whether they charge by the pre- or post-brining weight was never resolved, there or here. Unless you have a definitive statement from them...?

      2. f
        fluffernutty RE: gltsoi Nov 15, 2007 12:37 PM

        i always feel that you always remember (and try to forget) the taste of the thanksgiving turkey. this is one place where i would get a decent kosher.

        2 Replies
        1. re: fluffernutty
          heWho RE: fluffernutty Nov 15, 2007 01:50 PM

          Cooks Illustrated reviewed turkeys this year, and Kosher turkeys did rank high, but even old stand-bys like Butterball faired very well. A Kosher took top billing, but another was ranked lower than Butterball and Jennie-O. The organic bird got slammed, which I found interesting.

          Check it out: http://www.cooksillustrated.com/image...

          1. re: heWho
            foodperv RE: heWho Nov 15, 2007 08:26 PM

            i know it is sometimes luck (or lack of) but i have had none with the butterball over the last 3 decades

        2. g
          ginnyhw RE: gltsoi Nov 16, 2007 09:26 AM

          I had the same question (!) but I posted in Chains under favorite TJ products yesterday and nobody gave me a straight answer either. Kosher and WF are much more expensive and I was asking about the turkey you referred too. I did learn, much to my surprise, that many people find brined turkeys are too salty to stuff or make gravy from so I guess I will stay with the unbrined hotel turkey breast in our freezer. I like my stuffing cooked n the bird and covered with lots of pan made gravy.

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