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Brine Too Salty

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Post Tue Jul 06, 2004 11:43 pm
Vinsect well done
well done

Posts: 576
Location: Middle Tennessee
I just posted having done a Chicken Marsala on my grill in my previous post. It came out great other than having been too salty.

Refresh my memory on what ratio of salt to liquid a brine should be?
Thanks
If it aint broke, Break it!
Then rebuild it better.

Post Wed Jul 07, 2004 9:08 am
Bob-BQN User avatar
well done
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Posts: 12904
Location: Texas
If your using kosher salt it's about 1 cup to one gallon. You've got to love the Virtual Weber Bullet site it covers so much ground. Take a look at this. However, "All Recipes" has a much weaker ratio.
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Post Wed Jul 07, 2004 10:25 am
Airfoils well done
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Posts: 1063
I use a weaker ration myself usually. More brown sugar is often in order when I do a brine.

Post Wed Jul 07, 2004 3:11 pm
Info@Workman Site Admin
Site Admin

Posts: 590

And don't forget that the different brands of kosher salt apparently require different measurements. That's just to keep it interesting, I suppose (you'd think at least salt could just be salt!).

Info

Post Wed Jul 07, 2004 10:11 pm
ThrRoff well done
well done

Posts: 999
Location: Washington, DC

Vinsect,

I agree with Bob's ratio of salt and water. And, I always rinse the meat after brining, and be sure to dry it before smoking or cooking. Here is a brine that I have been using on fish lately and I bet it would do well with chicken. I think I will give it a try this wekend.

½ cup lemon juice

½ cup kosher salt

2 cups cold water

¾ cup honey

¼ cup bourbon or brandy

Juniper berries, pepper corns or other spices you like
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Post Thu Jul 08, 2004 8:09 am
Airfoils well done
well done

Posts: 1063
Just curious ThRoff but why brine fish? I've never done this as I've found the meat light enough to readily take up marinades in a short period of time so I reserve brining primarily for denser meats that don't take up falvor from mariande as readily. Plus, a lot of fish spend their whole lives swimming in salt water and naturally have a 'briny' taste (though not all of them). Do you just brine for a much shorter period?

Post Thu Jul 08, 2004 8:45 am
Vinsect well done
well done

Posts: 576
Location: Middle Tennessee
Yep, I was definitely putting in way to much salt. If the brand matters, I think it was Morton's Kosher salt.
If it aint broke, Break it!
Then rebuild it better.

Post Thu Jul 08, 2004 8:49 am
Airfoils well done
well done

Posts: 1063
Vinsect I don't think the brand matters so much as the type. E.g. kosher vs. table. I think that's what Amy was getting at. Kosher salt is nothing but pure sodium chloride (supposedly) so if your salt truly is kosher, I can't see there being much difference between brands other than crystal size maybe which may attribute to measuring differences but in the quantities we're discussing, IMHO I think it's negligible.

For those willing to wade through info on salt: http://www.saltinstitute.org/

Some of it is actually interesting.

Post Thu Jul 08, 2004 9:37 am
Info@Workman Site Admin
Site Admin

Posts: 590

Actually, I was talking about the brand. It's weird, but something I read in Cook's Illustrated. And you're right, Morton's has a smaller grain and is thus "more salty" per cup than Diamond (so if a brine recipe called for 2 cups of Diamond, you'd use 1 1/2 of Morton's). I wouldn't know this except I happened to move, change brands of salt, and end up with really salty pork chops once. Maybe it made so much of a difference because the pieces of meat were so small.

Info

Post Thu Jul 08, 2004 11:15 am
Airfoils well done
well done

Posts: 1063
Wow you found a 1/2 cup differernce from grain size? That's surprising because I use Mortons Kosher and have never cut back on recipes yet none of mine seem extra salty by any stretch and I'm sure at least the in-laws would have let me have it if it were :lol: . Next time I'm at the store I'll pick up another box and do some measurement comparisons on a scale. If anything, we're shining the light on the importance of grain size.

EDIT: I'm going to use a kosher salt comparison. For those of you that are new, understanding the difference between table and kosher salt is important. You'll always use less table salt as it is much finer than kosher salt. Also, understanding where your recipe came from is important. In every case that I'm aware of in Steve's books he is using kosher salt wit perhaps an exception or 2 but I can' recall. I highly reccomend kosher salt over iodized myself but if you are using table salt keep this in mind when preparing Steve's dishes. :wink:

Post Thu Jul 08, 2004 10:30 pm
ThrRoff well done
well done

Posts: 999
Location: Washington, DC

Airfoils.

We like smoked fish done in a similar way as Steven's Rum Smoked Salmon in HTG. (A great recipe, I might add.) While we are not cold smoking fish, I am getting the taste we like by curing the fish in a brine solution for anywhere from 1 to 4 hours. Smoking time -- make that roast smoking times -- will vary from a scant 30 minutes to over an hour where the temperatre is around 350.
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Post Sat Jul 10, 2004 10:57 am
BBcue-Z well done
well done

Posts: 3045
Location: Atlanta-GA
I agree with info. Smaller grains will definitely yield saltier solution. Smaller grains dissolve faster and produce more salt per cup than larger grains. I found the best way to judge a brine is tasting it prior to placing the meat in it. If taste too salty to you, then the meat will be as such. It should taste the same way as your preference of saltiness. Also the amount of time you leave the meat in the solution has great effect on its degree of saltiness. Sweetners will definitely mask the saltiness of anything. But sometimes the recipe does not call for it.
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