How to Brine Chicken
Brining is often regarded as a secret trick to achieve juicier and more flavourful chicken. It improves the taste and texture of chicken tremendously when smoked, grilled or roasted.
The brining solutions vary in the amount of salt, which is used according to one’s preference in saltiness. The more salt that is used the quicker the brining time, but it will also result in the outer layer of the meat being very salty. Using a less salty solution and longer brining time will result in a more even seasoning through all layers to the bone. The brining solution and the chicken are placed in a large bowl and stored in the refrigerator during the brining process.
A guideline for the duration of brining is as follow:
• A whole chicken- up to 10 hours
• Half chicken – up to 6 hours
• Chicken breast- up to one hour
This is a basic recipe of a brining solution:
• 2 liters cold water
• ½ cup salt
• ¼ cup sugar
• 2 bay leaves
• 2 whole garlic
Bring 1 liter of the water, salt and sugar to boil, stir until the salt and sugar are completely dissolved. Remove from heat, add bay leaves and garlic and allow to cool completely. Transfer the solution into a big bowl and add the remaining 1 liter of water. Add in the chicken and make sure the chicken is completely covered in the brine.
To keep the chicken submerged, place a heavy plate, or a fiat-bottomed bowl filled with some water over the chicken in the brine container. Place the container in the refrigerator for 6 to 10 hours. Once the time is up, rinse the chicken under cold, running water. Pat dry with a clean paper towel. Season lightly and set to cook. The end result – a plump and flavourful chicken!