The buttermilk-brined turkey of your Thanksgiving dreams

Buttermilk-brined roast turkey, a recipe inspired by the Southern method of marinating chicken overnight in buttermilk before frying, is adapted from Samin Nosrat's roast chicken recipe in her cookbook "Salt, Fat, Acid, Heat." Nosrat decided to find out if the popular roast chicken recipe from her book would work for turkey. / Photo by Romulo Yanes/The New York Times

For someone who didn't grow up celebrating Thanksgiving, I've got a lot of strong opinions about turkey.

It's probably because I've cooked more of it than practically anyone I know, in just about more ways than I can list. I've roasted, braised, grilled, spit-roasted and deep-fried it. I've boned it out and made "turchetta." I've dry-brined it, wet-brined it, injected it with brine and stuffed slabs of herbed butter under its skin. I've built a makeshift cinder-block oven to cook it at a friend's farm that lacked a kitchen. I've even cooked 20 turkeys in a night, working the holiday in a restaurant.

And I once took an impromptu call from famed rancher Bill Niman. He was just starting to raise heritage turkeys and wondered if he could swing by with seven different breeds for me to cook for a blind tasting.