Friday, August 20, 2010

Brined chicken = the best chicken

The other day I was in a bad mood and I made big pronouncements at the dinner table.  I pronounced "Dry chicken is for losers!"  My girlfriend did not like this.  Ranting.  But the chicken was undeniably moist!  So she dealt with me.  You can learn how to make your significant other deal with your ranting, too!  If you can predict today that you will want chicken tomorrow, you can brine chicken.  Here's what you do...   

Add 1/4 cup of kosher salt to each quart of water, and then you soak your chicken in the salty water for 8 hours or so.  If you don't have 8 hours on your hands, you can get away with 4 and some extra salt.  If you don't have four hours, you can soak the chicken at room temperature and maybe bump up the salt just a wee bit more.  Point is, put that chicken into a salt bath, and add to that salt bath some spices such as a bay leaf, some fresh chilies, come coriander seeds, some crushed peppercorns, some garlic, some of this some of that, pretty much whatever you got will work, just use your head and you'll be cool. 

cold chicken tacos are awesome summer left-over food
Once your chicken has been brined, prepare in any way you would normally prepare chicken: roasted, fried, marinated and grilled, and so forth.  The salt will seep into the muscle tissue and help the chicken pull marinades into the flesh *and* help it retain water; here, "retained water" means delicious chicken, not something else.  Anyway, these are the cold chicken tacos I made for lunch today.  (I call them cold chicken tacos because the chicken was cold.)  Maybe on another day I will talk about the absurdity of putting cheese AND sour cream on a meat taco.  Until then, cheese has no place on a meat taco and flour tortillas are absurd for tacos.  Sorry.   


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