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May 16, 2011 10:03 PM

I dry-brined my nice chicken overnight but...

I didn't wash it before I salted it (it's in the refrigerator, half-covered right now) plan was to rinse off the salt tomorrow, before roasting it. Is this bad? Should I have rinsed off the bird, then salted it?

My other question is: if you dry-brine, do you need to rinse the bird and then salt again before roasting?

The bird is from WF Bell and Evans..

Thank you!


First time dry-briner

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  1. I rinse after dry-brining the bird overnight. Then before roasting I re-season (adjusting, of course, for the fact that the bird has been dry brined and will be much saltier than normal).

    4 Replies
    1. re: ipsedixit

      thanks ips. so, i will rinse it tomorrow before roasting. but how do i know how much kosher salt to put on again? just a light dusting?

      and just out of curiousity, what temps do YOU roast your chicken at?

      1. re: xiaobao12

        Just curious, what's the point of rinsing the bird after dry brining it? Is it because you think it's too salty?

        The way I do my bird is rinsing it, patting dry with paper towels, seasoning for a day or two then I roast it... I don't see the point in rinsing it after the dry brine.

        As far as the temp of roasting the bird, i know your'e asking ips, but I feel it really depends on the size of your bird.

        1. re: darrentran87

          I agree with darrentran87 and cook my exactly the same .

          Other "tip" I would pass on is to pre-heat the pan in the oven (I use a cast iron grill pan from IKEA that works a charm - no rack needed because of the ridges). Also the bird should fit snuggly into the pan. In general I heat the oven and pan at 220 C and turn it down to 180 C when the bird goes in. I also always rest the bird when it comes out for about 15 mins.

          This method gives you a crispy skin and very moist bird.

          Good luck!

          1. re: darrentran87

            Yes, b/c I don't like it too salty. I rinse and pat dry. I want the brine to make my chicken a bit more tender and juicy, and a bit more flavorful but not overwhelmingly taste like a salt lick.

        1. re: Woodfireguy

          thanks for that link. it is talking specifically about wet-brining and how salt affects the proteins. it doesn't mention anything about dry brining - is it just as effective?

          1. re: xiaobao12

            I think that wet bring is all you need. My personal opinion is that dry bring only takes an hour or two depending the size of the meat. The time frame is what’s important like it describes in the link. To much and you will dry out the meat which is the opposite of what you want….right.

            1. re: Woodfireguy

              I think that wet bring is all you need.
              it's really a matter of preference...mine is for the dry method. i like the texture and taste better, and as a bonus it's not as messy as wet brining. but that's just my opinion.

              as an aside, i greatly prefer dry-aged beef to wet-aged as well. i know wet aging doesn't involve immersing the meat in liquid the same way, but something about keeping any type of meat sitting in a moist environment for a long period of time has an unpleasant affect on taste & texture for me.

              to the OP, i use the same method as ipse - rinse and pat dry before roasting - because i'm not a fan of anything that's overly salty.

                1. re: goodhealthgourmet

                  Yes, wet aging beef is counterproductive. The whole purpose of aging beef is to reduce the moisture content and intensify the flavor. I have some flat iron steaks on a rack in the fridge right now.

          2. There is no need to rinse it either before or after salting it. One of the benefits of salting it, rather than brining it, is that the skin will be dry and crisp up better, this would be undone by rinsing it.

            2 Replies
            1. re: ESNY

              OK - so ESNY, you don't wash your chickens before you salt? You aren't worried about dirt and grime?

              1. re: xiaobao12

                dirt and grime, no? I can't say I've ever gotten a piece of meat from the store that was dirty, and I'd think twice about buying if it did.

            2. I don't wash either before or after. I wouldn't rinse it after because you want the dry skin for the crispiness. I stand by the Zuni chicken method:


              If the skin is not completely dry, it'll stick when you try to flip it.

              1 Reply
              1. re: chowser

                plus one - ha! I won't even try to improve on perfection. No rinsing either.

              2. I don't wash my chickens before or after either.

                8 Replies
                1. re: King of Northern Blvd

                  Nor I. The whole point of a dry brine is to introduce salt without adding wetness to the meat/skin. I salt, wrap tightly in plastic wrap and leave for a day or so, then unwrap and refrigerate uncovered for another day so the skin can get completely dry.

                  1. re: biondanonima

                    Rub the skin with cornstarch, and you'll get even crispier skin.

                    1. re: ipsedixit

                      When do you rub it, just before baking? How much?

                      1. re: chowser

                        Depending on the size of the bird (5 pounder usually), use about 1.5 teaspoons of corn starch. Dry the bird, then rub corn starch (and other seasonings) over the bird just before you stick it in the oven.

                    2. re: biondanonima

                      bion, do you mean that you wrap the chicken itself tightly or you cover the vessel?

                      1. re: xiaobao12

                        I wrap the chicken itself tightly. That way, any juices that are pulled out of the chicken by the salt are kept in contact with the bird and are mostly reabsorbed, which pulls the salt into the meat (which is what you want to have happen). Once any extruded juices are reabsorbed (usually within a day), then I uncover to allow the skin to get dry.

                        1. re: biondanonima

                          thanks biod - will give that a try next time.