Brining, is a great way to keep your poultry (or other meats) from drying out when BBQ’ing.
Brining makes cooked meat moister by hydrating the cells of its muscle tissue before cooking, via the process of osmosis, and by allowing the cells to hold on to the water while they are cooked, via the process of denaturation. The brine surrounding the cells has a higher concentration of salt than the fluid within the cells, but the cell fluid has a higher concentration of other solutes. This leads salt ions to diffuse into the cell, whilst the solutes in the cells cannot diffuse through the cell membranes into the brine. The increased salinity of the cell fluid causes the cell to absorb water from the brine via osmosis. The salt introduced into the cell also denatures its proteins. The proteins coagulate, forming a matrix that traps water molecules and holds them during cooking. This prevents the meat from dehydrating.
I’ve been playing around with a brining recipe for poultry for awhile now. Last night I think I stumbled upon a winner.
The chicken was awesome. I brined it over night and smoked it for 4.5 hrs.
Here is my recipe
1 – Gallon of Water (I use filtered water)
3/4 – Cup of Kosher Salt
3/4 – Cup of Brown Sugar
1.5 – Tbs of Poultry Seasonings (I used one from penzeys.com) or any other brand
2 – Tbs of Garlic Powder
2 – Tbs of Onion Powder
1 – Tbs of Chili Powder
1/2 – Tbs of Green Goddess herbs (I used one from penzeys.com) – if you dont have, just add some dill & basil.
2 – Tbs of Cajun / Creole spice mix, any brand should do well
Mix everything in a large, clean stock pot and add your poultry to the pot.
Refrigerate over night
The great thing about brining recipes, is that you can add whatever you want & like. Remember, experimenting is half the fun.