how to brine meat

What is Brining?

A brine is simply sugar and salt dissolved in water. In order to brine meat, submerge the meat in the solution, and let it sit for 30 minutes to 30 hours depending on the size of the meat and intensity of the flavor you want. This works because meat is composed of cells, and cells have these things called membranes. Membranes try very hard to attain balance. So, if there is more salt on one side of the membrane than the other, some salt is moved across the membrane in a process called diffusion. Diffusion of a liquid across a membrane is called osmosis. Osmosis is the key to brining. To the right are the basic tools you may need to brine meat, and the detailed brining articles are below.

Tools for Brining

  • Stock pots – varying sizes for various jobs.
  • Cooler – for large brining jobs just use ice in place of half the water.
  • Whisk – for mixing the salt and sugar into the water.
  • Brining bag – if you have room in your fridge the bag works well.