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Pheasant Breasts Prep. and Smoke Instructions

post #1 of 9
Thread Starter 
I have a few pheasant breasts that I am thawing out to put into a brine tomorrow night (Friday), and smoke on Saturday. I'm new to brines and smoking, so could you guys give me a few tips. A brine recipe would be great, and temps I need to smoke them at also. What should my internal temp. be when done, and should I wrap them in bacon to prevent them drying out. Do I use a rub or not. All help is appreciated.

I will do a Qview of the whole process.

Thanks in advance.
post #2 of 9
For a brine I do it as I go. With this method don't add the meat until you are done.

Find a container big enough to hold the meat and brine. Fill part of the way with water and add salt until it tastes a little saltier than sea water. I then add some sugar, it shouldn't be sweet but just start to change the flavor a bit (hope that makes sense). The just like salt, sugar helps denature the proteins so they can bind more water to make the meat jucier. During the cooking the sugar helps make a more flavorful bark/exterior by helping brown the meat.

This is the starting point for all my brines then I add things from there depending on what flavors I want.

bay leaves and peppercorns go with almost anything

garlic also great

star anise, cinnamon, corriander for more of an asian kick

soy sauce can also be a great way to get the brine salty.

If the birds have no skin the bacon is less important (but still good), if they are naked then throw on some bacon.

I would do breasts to 165 internal, rest 15min, slice and serve.

post #3 of 9
Thread Starter 
lownslow, I appreciate the tips. Sounds simple enough. What temp. should I try to keep the smoker at, and approx. how long to reach the desired internal temp.
post #4 of 9
I usually smoke mine to 160 then let them rest in foill for 20-30 minutes prior to slicing. Temp at 225 for me for approximately 1.5 hours depending on size of breasts. Some have taken a little longer main thing is to get them to temp prior to pulling them.

This has worked great for me and I have never brined them and they have always turned out delicous!
post #5 of 9
FWIW, I've found that my brines are much more effective in imparting flavor if I bring the water to a boil and then add in the ingredients. I always used to just cold mix my brines, but never again . . .
post #6 of 9
Thread Starter 
Thanks guys for your time and sharing your experiences. Looking forward to this.
post #7 of 9
If your birds dont have the skin on them, watch the amount of salt you use in the brine, it can make the bird waaay too salty. I tend to use a maranade with less salt, or a dry rub now, I have ruined some birds by brining.
post #8 of 9
This is how I will do it next time, when foiling add some low sodium chicken broth, yeah baby I have a couple of birds in the freezer and am gonna try this. Maybe a light rub with some sage or rosmary.
post #9 of 9
I dont use brine on the breasts, i just take some greek seasoning and rub on the breasts, then wrap in bacon, and smoke to 165 deg internal temp, always turn's out good for me.
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