Cooking and Baking

Turkey parts - should I brine?

I'm cooking turkey pieces this year, due to an initial expectation of just the 2 of us. Now it looks like we'll have a couple of guests, so I bought a little more turkey because I want to have leftovers.

Anyway, I now have 2 split breast halves (on the bone) and 3 thighs from free range turkeys. I don't want to go as far as braising them (a la Bittman's recent suggestion), I do want to roast them as traditionally as possible.

My question is, should I brine the breasts? Since I can cook them separately, the potential for overcooking is alleviated. I'm hesitant to brine because, with other poultry, I've found that the results seem like lunchmeat, mushy and diluted in meaty flavor.

I made turkey stock today with some necks, so I'm not worried much about gravy. But I've never roasted turkey breast on its own, and I'd hate to miss the chance to do it right. Should I stick with the dry pre-salting, a la Judy Rogers? Any other tips or experience cooking turkey parts?


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