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Old 08-09-2008, 11:38 AM   #11
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I never marinate chicken for longer than 24 hours. Without getting into safety issues, the flesh tends to become unpleasantly soft & mushy.
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Old 08-11-2008, 08:27 AM   #12
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I know if there is any lemon in the marinade, the chicken will actually start to "cook" and the meat will get grainy, in my experience. When stores do flavored chicken it's usually more a rub than an marinade. I just wouldn't feel comfortable for more than a day.
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Old 08-11-2008, 08:42 AM   #13
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And then to add to the mix - I successfully marinate for 3 days in buttermilk (whole, boneless, skinless breasts) and on the 4th day do a flavoring marinade i.e., teriyaki, white wine, pineapple juice, or chicken broth and rosemary, or chicken broth and tarragon. They stay plumb and juicy and are very tender and not mushy.
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Old 08-11-2008, 08:26 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by elitecodex View Post
Interesting - can I ask why? what is a typical time frame for doing something like that? I would be interesting to get a "Shirley Corriher" type response :) Im into the finer details like that.
It depends on the marinade and the protein. Acid alone behaves one way, acid with fat behaves another - the balance of fat and acid also makes a difference, as does the concentration.

Acid with a fat can tenderize and add moisture and flavor (like marinating chicken in buttermilk). The fat helps in the rate of how quickly and deeply the marinade penetrates the meat. Wine can also be used because it is acidic and the alcohol works like fats - since fats are also alcohol soluable. Wine has been used for centuries as a "tenderizing" agent - like in the original recipe for Coq au Vin where a tough old rooster was marinated in wine to tenderize it. Acid can also be used to "cook" proteins - like in ceviche - for fish, crustaceans (like crab, lobster, crayfish, prawns, shrimp), and shellfish (like clams, oysters, scallops).

So the answer is - how the mariade behaves depends on the marinade, the protein being marinated, and for how long. Chicken marinated in buttermilk for 3 days could be tender and juicy - shrimp in lime juice for 3 days could be nothing more than mush.

I would suggest that anyone into the "finer details like that" pick up a copy of On Food and Cooking - The Science and Lore of the Kitchen - Revised Edition by Harold McGee either at the library or buy one someplace like Amazon.com. If you are really really serious - you would also want to pick up a copy of Cookwise: The Secrets of Cooking Revealed by Shirley Corriher. McGee is pure science - Corriher takes that science and applies it to some recipes. Trust me - if you're into the science behind the cooking - you will want both. Another good reference book to add to those two is What Einstein Told His Cook: Kitchen Science Explained by Robert Wolke.

Unfortunately - all of my books are boxed and ready for moving ... and if I remember right - it would be like 20 or more pages to give a totally concise answer.
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Old 05-08-2009, 11:21 PM   #15
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A bit off topic, but it has the same subject, Marinating chicken.

Can you marinate chicken in regular BBQ sauce, or would one need to water it down? I just want to try to get the BBQ taste into the chicken, not just on the skin. Would I need to water it down a bit to get it to soak in, or keep it as is? I only marinate for maybe 24 hours before it gets cooked, usually 12 hours at the most though, if that makes any difference.
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Old 05-09-2009, 12:14 AM   #16
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The key ingredients for marinades come in three groups - acids, such as vinegar or lemon juice; oils; and seasonings. If your BBQ sauce has those 3 groups in it then you could use it as a marinade, otherwise No.

If you want a marinade to penetrate better, punch holes in the meat and/or vacuum-seal it. Watering it down gives you watered down sauce only.
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Old 05-09-2009, 12:22 AM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rubix View Post
A bit off topic, but it has the same subject, Marinating chicken.

Can you marinate chicken in regular BBQ sauce, or would one need to water it down? I just want to try to get the BBQ taste into the chicken, not just on the skin. Would I need to water it down a bit to get it to soak in, or keep it as is? I only marinate for maybe 24 hours before it gets cooked, usually 12 hours at the most though, if that makes any difference.
If you have a meat injector you can inject the BBQ sauce. If not, do like mcnerd suggested...stab a few holes in it with a fork and rub the marinade into the holes.
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Old 05-09-2009, 01:20 PM   #18
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the acid ingredients in the sauces will begin to break down the protiens. i think more than a couple hours or overnight in anything with an acid tends to make the chicken mushy in texture. IMHO

i marinate boneless/skinless breasts in one of these:

olive oil
fresh garlic
oregano
salt
ground black pepper

olive oil
fresh garlic
fresh ginger
salt
ground black pepper
sometimes i add onions

or a basic fresh italian dressing with vinegar
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Old 05-09-2009, 03:57 PM   #19
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Mmmm! that sounds really good msmofet :)
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Old 05-09-2009, 04:00 PM   #20
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Mmmm! that sounds really good msmofet :)
thank you!! which one do you like best?

i use the ginger one without the onions for making a stirfry.

heres my Basic Salad Dressing

Olive oil
Canola oil
Red Wine Vinegar
Chianti Wine Vinegar
Champagne Vinegar
Grated fresh garlic - grated on a microplane type grater or minced fine - to taste
Green olive paste - to taste
Anchovy paste - to taste
Granulated Garlic powder (if your fresh garlic is mild)
Onion powder
Adobo seasoning
Maggi Seasoning/Sauce (if unavailable use soy sauce as a sub)
Ground black pepper
Accent (or MSG) - if needed to correct flavor
Salt - if needed to correct flavor

All to taste.
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