That’s not the only trick Chaey has up her sleeve for a picture-perfect Thanksgiving meal. She recently took to Instagram with a turkey brining suggestion — one that leans into a pantry staple a good number of us probably hadn’t considered before. She writes: “Using soy sauce in turkey brines and glazes is an old trick of the trade in the food world. It gives the turkey that covetable golden-brown skin while also seasoning it inside and out.” Chaey says the soy sauce both adds an umami component and gives a “reddish-brown color” that turns the finished product into what she describes as a “magazine cover-worthy Thanksgiving bird.”
Chaey’s brine calls for 10 ounces of soy sauce, with a quarter cup set aside to make a glaze, then brining the bird with that, water, salt, sugar, garlic, peppercorns, as well as “a handful of woody herbs such as rosemary, thyme and/or sage”, per Kikkoman. And in case you were wondering what makes an herb woody, City Gardening calls these herbs plants that eventually grow wooden stems over time. The classification includes sage, sweet bay, thyme, and tarragon.