Home Cooking

Brining Times? (and other queries)


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Home Cooking

Brining Times? (and other queries)

eight_inch_pestle | | Mar 3, 2011 12:42 AM

Prelim research reveals the board teems with brining threads, but I find none dedicated to immersion time. Myriad suggestions abound when the topic arises tangentially: <i>Cooks Illustrated</i> and others rock an hour to the pound, while some---including CH-ers I trust---push 8 to 12 hours for a pork loin, which obviously checks in at neither 8 nor 12 pounds. Perhaps this relates to differing Schools of Saltiness: I'm deploying 1/2 cup sugar and 1/2 cup (Diamond kosher) salt in 4 cups of unsuspecting water, if that helps.

The gf dines down in Rip City tonight (March 3), so I thought I'd guinea pig myself on a bone-in center-cut chop or a pork tenderloin. Much indebted to any assistance.



PS: You still reading? Then indulge me in a couple queries regarding the post-brining experience:

1. Rinse before drying? I assume so, but countless instructions ignore this step
2. Salt as normal before browning? Some say no, others don't say no

PPS: If you're <b>still</b> reading, answer me a meta inquiry: Is there actually a CH Home Cooking consensus on whether brining is an unadulterated good? I've gotten to home plate but once with brining, and while the meat was possibly moister (and only possibly), it was, well, watery---especially for the nice pasture-raised pork we ate, and moist and juicy ain't synonymous. I also didn't love the mushier texture. But I lost that brine virginity to a simple water/salt/sugar brine, which is why I'm considering a nice local apple cider spiked with ample spices and herbs in tomorrow's brine. And I'm open to the possibility the bad texture was due to either the vagaries of meat and cooking or a novice briner.

Anyhow, thanks for reading and considering. And mad apologies in advance if a little research failed to unearth a thread nailing all of this.

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