brine for one chicken breast
what would be the approximate amounts of water and salt to brine one half chicken breast?
how long should it be in the brine?
I usually marinade in teryaki sauce with brown sugar and thought I'd like to try something new.
For a basic brine, mix one quart of water with 1/4 cup of kosher salt. Let the chicken breast soak in the brine for 1-2 hours for a bone-in, skin-on breast. 30 minutes to an hour for boneless, skinless. Maybe someone else can confirm. I usually look it up in one of my cookbooks to double-check because I can never remember and don't want to end up with overly salty food.
Hi you two,
I've been using a brine of 1 tsp salt, 1 tsp sugar in 2 cups of water for a half boneless/skinless breast, also a 4-5 ounce pork sirloin cut, leaving the meat in the brine for only 30-45 minutes depending on size.
Takes maybe a minute to mix it up. I poke the meat all over with a fork after it is in the brine.
The results have been very good. The chicken turned out juicy and tender instead of tough and stringy. The pork the same. Sirloin is not as tender as loin. My guess is for loin it would take less time, maybe 20 minutes.
re: I used to know how to cook...
Interesting. I'm not a fan of chicken breasts but my family likes them a whole lot. I never brine breasts and they never come out tough and stringy. I just try to never over cook them. I did brine BSCB once before tossing them on my smoker but found them more salty than I cared for.
The breasts I had trouble with were the boneless-skinless kind that are vacuum packed in plastic. (I had bought some to grind and didn't use all of them...)
I don't have problems with the bone and skin on kind. That's what I generally buy.
Not wanting the breast to be salty is why I used just a teaspoon of salt and the same of sugar with two cups of water. Worked for me!
Anyway, whatever works, right?? : )
The ratio from "alliebear" works for any quantity of meat. You just need to stick to the timing.
The strength of the brine does not change for the size of the meat only the time. You may only need half the quantity for one breast but the salt to water ratio will still be the same for a 2 hour soak.
Speaking only in generalities, the ratio of Kosher salt to table salt runs about 3 to 2, with a given amount of table salt weighing about 1.5 times as much as a the same amount of Kosher salt. But Kosher salt doesn't dissolve as readily as table salt and the actual ratio between the two will vary depending on the size of the granules produced in the manufacture of brand of salt selected.
I don't use Kosher salt a brine because I find it to be quite difficult to dissolve in cold water; the choice is yours.
Using alliebear's formula, I'd try 1/8 cup of table salt to replace the Kosher and see how that worked and work on a trial and error basis from that point on. It is, after all, only one chicken breast.
I've always boiled my brine first to make sure everything is nice and dissolved, but I guess if you're only cooking one chicken breast, it would be a lot of work for a little pay off. I usually add garlic powder and other things though.
On a side note (speaking of brine), I used this one this past Thanksgiving and it was FANTASTIC... just in case you were looking for something a little different...
I tested it out on chicken a couple of days before and it turned out great.