Take the time to brine

Basic Brine with lemon slices in pot
This basic brine will provide a lot of flavor without overpowering with too much spice.

 

A devoted convert

The story goes that my grandmother had a little jet stream diner in NYC back in the day.  In that diner, she supposedly had the best chicken.  The taste of which, you simply couldn’t get at home. When asked what her secret to making her chicken so juicy and tender, she would tell you to soak it in salted water before cooking, aka brining.  She believed it cleaned the chicken from all of its impurities, making it taste fresh, juicy and all things good.  Needless to say, I am devoted convert to the method.

For the past 5 years or so, I’ve been experimenting with various techniques, spice and flavor combinations.  I try to always brine my poultry before roasting, broiling, frying, stewing, etc. There is always a ziplock bag of chicken soaking in it either in the fridge for the weeknight dinners ahead or one frozen in the freezer to defrost and throw in some chicken.

A brine for every season

I’ve also created different variations of brine each depending on what flavor profile I want to bring out.  I have a chili one for or for a spicy stir fry.  I have a thyme and rosemary brine perfect for a Sunday Roast chicken or crispy chicken cutlets.  There’s even a hickory concoction for making bbq chicken legs roasted in the oven.  I guarantee you that this is a good way to add flavor without adding a lot of fat as well as an excellent way to prevent the chicken from drying out during cooking. Squeaky and dry poultry NO MORE!  From now on, you’re eating the good stuff.



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Spicy brine with lemon slices and spices in pot

Take the time to brine


  • Author: Spicepaw
  • Prep Time: 10
  • Cook Time: 15
  • Total Time: 35 minutes

Description

What’s the secret to succulent and juicy chicken? The answer is bringing the night before. Basic and spicy brine recipes for the perfect seasoned poultry.  #chicken #poultry #brine


Scale

Ingredients

Basic Brine
  • 100g (about 1/2 cup) salt
  • 100g (about 1/2 cup) sugar
  • 1 tbsp peppercorn
  • 1 lemon thinly sliced (this allows you to add both the juice of the lemon and the zest of the lemon peel)
  • 1 head of garlic (garlic cloves crushed)
  • 34 bay leaves
  • 2.5 L (8 1/2 cups) water
Red Chili Brine
    • 100g (about 1/2 cup) salt
    • 100g (about 1/2 cup) sugar
    • 1 tbsp peppercorn
    • 1 lemon thinly sliced (this allows you to add both the juice of the lemon and the zest of the lemon peel)
    • 1 head of garlic (garlic cloves crushed)
    • 34 bay leaves
    • 1 tbsp red pepper flakes
    • 1 tsp thyme
    • 2.5 L (8 1/2 cups) water

Instructions

Basic Brine
  1. Thinly slice 1 lemon and add them to a medium to the large-sized pot, making sure to squeeze out all of the juice from the lemon slices in the pot.
  2. Add salt, sugar, crushed garlic cloves, bay leaves and 1 L of water and bring to a boil over high heat.
  3. Boil for 10 minutes, making sure the brine mixture does not boil over onto the stovetop.
  4. After 10 min, remove from heat and let cool.
  5. Once at room temperature, add the remaining 1.5 liters of water.  The mixture should taste like a salty soup.  If you find it to be too salty, add a mug or two of water but not much more as you don’t want to dilute the brine too much.
  6. In a ziplock bag or Tupperware container,  cover the poultry in brine and let soak overnight or up to 2-3 days in the refrigerator. When ready to cook, remove poultry from brine, pat dry and remove any herbs that might remain on the meat.
  7. Discard brine once used, do not reuse.
Red Chili Brine
  1. Thinly slice 1 lemon and add them to a medium to large-sized pot, making sure to squeeze out all of the juice from the lemon slices in the pot.
  2. Add salt, sugar, crushed garlic cloves, bay leaves, red pepper flakes, thyme and 1 L of water and bring to a boil over high heat.
  3. Boil for 10 minutes, making sure the brine mixture does not boil over onto the stovetop.
  4. After 10 min, remove from heat and let cool.
  5. Once at room temperature, add the remaining 1.5 liters of water.  The mixture should taste like a salty soup.  If you find it to be too salty, add a mug or two of water but not much more as you don’t want to dilute the brine too much.
  6. In a ziplock bag or Tupperware container, cover the poultry in brine and let soak overnight or up to 2-3 days in the refrigerator. When ready to cook, remove poultry from brine, pat dry and remove any herbs that might remain on the meat.
  7. Discard brine once used, do not reuse.

  • Category: Poultry
  • Method: boiling
  • Cuisine: Western

Keywords: Poultry, chicken, brine, spicy, thyme, garlic, bay leaves



Red Chili Brine

Spicy brine with lemon slices and spices in pot
Made with red chili powder, thyme and lemon, this Red Chili Brine is perfect for those with a spice tooth.


Yum

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