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Old 08-25-2006, 08:59 PM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Barb L
What do you brine in ? Thanks for the info.
Hi barb,

This is what I do (for pork & chicken):

1 Qt vegetable stock, chilled
1/2 cup kosher salt
1/2 C dark brown sugar
1 tsp black peppercorns
2 bay leaves
1 Qt orange juice, chilled
2 Qt of ice and some water (total volume of 2 Qt)

In a pot bring 2 C of the stock, salt, sugar, peppercorns and bay leaves just to a boil. Stir to dissolve sugar and salt. Add remaining stock, orange juice, and 2 quarts ice water, and pour into a 2-gallon bucket. When mixture has cooled to below 40F, add the meat and place bucket in a cool place. Let brine for at least 8 hours and up to 48 hours. (You can freeze in portions with the brine at this point. Use ziplock bags.)

Remove meat from the brine, pat dry with paper towels (don't rinse!), and cook as desired.
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Old 08-25-2006, 09:34 PM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chopstix
Let brine for at least 8 hours and up to 48 hours. (You can freeze in portions with the brine at this point. Use ziplock bags.)
Most brine "recipes" use a lot more salt than that and brine for waaaay less time.

The usual ratio is a cup of kosher salt to a gallon of water. Sometimes even more salt is used to speed up brining time. But using less salt doesn't work.

Brining chicken for 48 hours will ruin it. In a normal strength brine, chicken pieces take 1-3 hours.

And it's fine to rinse the meat. In fact you should if there is lots of sugar in the brine and you are going to grill it.

All About Brining
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Old 08-25-2006, 10:09 PM   #23
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Try this recipe and all your questions will be answered:

4 skinless, boneless chicken breast halves (6 to 8 ounces each)
¼ cup coarse kosher salt
¼ cup firmly packed dark-brown sugar
12 whole black peppercorns
1 fresh red chili pepper, thinly sliced (jalapeño, not bell pepper)
2 whole bay leaves
1 cup hot water
3 cups cold water
1 lemon, thinly sliced, slices cut in half
1 small onion, thinly sliced, slices cut in half
2 cloves of garlic, peeled, then crushed with the side of a cleaver

1. Place the salt, brown sugar, peppercorns, sliced chili pepper, and bay leaves in a large, non-reactive bowl, preferably one with a lid.

2. Add the hot water and whisk until the salt and brown sugar dissolve.

3. Add the cold water, the lemon slices, onion slices, and crushed garlic.

4. Cool brine to room temperature, then add chicken.

5. Cover the dish with lid or plastic wrap

6. Refrigerate for 2 hours, turning the chicken once or twice.

7. Grill chicken over high heat, 4 to 6 minutes per side.
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Old 08-25-2006, 10:32 PM   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jennyema
Most brine "recipes" use a lot more salt than that and brine for waaaay less time.

The usual ratio is a cup of kosher salt to a gallon of water. Sometimes even more salt is used to speed up brining time. But using less salt doesn't work.

Brining chicken for 48 hours will ruin it. In a normal strength brine, chicken pieces take 1-3 hours.

And it's fine to rinse the meat. In fact you should if there is lots of sugar in the brine and you are going to grill it.

All About Brining
Hi Jennyema!

I'm no expert myself. The brine recipe (and advice) I posted is from my idol Alton Brown's book, 'I'm just here for the Food'. It always works very well for me, so far
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Old 08-25-2006, 11:10 PM   #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chopstix
Hi Jennyema!

I'm no expert myself. The brine recipe (and advice) I posted is from my idol Alton Brown's book, 'I'm just here for the Food'. It always works very well for me, so far
I thought it looked familiar -- with the orange juice.

Anyway, I have the book here and he uses 1 1/2 cup of kosher salt for 2 gallons of liquid, which is more than yours but less than what most recipes call for.

He also says to brine a 16-18 pound turkey for 6-8 hours.

I can't imagine a recipe calling for brining anything for 48 hours, unless you are making corned beef.

Edited to add ...

I was reading the book in bed and found the exact recipe that you are referring to on page 185, exactly as you state it. So apologies for confusing it with the turkey brine, though it is almost identical.

I love Alton, but he is all over the map on this.

On the next page is a pork brine recipe that calls for 1 1/2 cup salt for only 2 quarts of water. Says that a half an hour will season it, then later says pork should brine for 6-12 hours.

Next is a shrimp brine recipe that uses 1/4 cup salt and a pound of ice, which, I believe, is just a pint.

Most recipes use more than 1/2 cup of salt for a gallon of water. It's the salt that makes the brine work, chemically.
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Old 08-26-2006, 04:57 AM   #26
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chopstix
Hi barb,

This is what I do (for pork & chicken):

1 Qt vegetable stock, chilled
1/2 cup kosher salt
1/2 C dark brown sugar
1 tsp black peppercorns
2 bay leaves
1 Qt orange juice, chilled
2 Qt of ice and some water (total volume of 2 Qt)

In a pot bring 2 C of the stock, salt, sugar, peppercorns and bay leaves just to a boil. Stir to dissolve sugar and salt. Add remaining stock, orange juice, and 2 quarts ice water, and pour into a 2-gallon bucket. When mixture has cooled to below 40F, add the meat and place bucket in a cool place. Let brine for at least 8 hours and up to 48 hours. (You can freeze in portions with the brine at this point. Use ziplock bags.)

Remove meat from the brine, pat dry with paper towels (don't rinse!), and cook as desired.
Thanks for all your help ! Barb
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Old 08-26-2006, 07:50 AM   #27
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jennyema

I was reading the book in bed and found the exact recipe that you are referring to on page 185, exactly as you state it. So apologies for confusing it with the turkey brine, though it is almost identical.
No problem Jenny! Thank you for clarifying it. And you're absolutely right, AB is all over the place on this one! Hope you didn't have to get out of bed! Sleep tight!
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Old 08-26-2006, 04:46 PM   #28
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chopstix
No problem Jenny! Thank you for clarifying it. And you're absolutely right, AB is all over the place on this one! Hope you didn't have to get out of bed! Sleep tight!
Alton does love to brine. Just a search of Brine on foodtv.com and he's there a half dozen times with different ideas. I'm thinking of trying his brine with honey this year. Anyone tried that yet? It's for turkey.
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