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Flavor-neutral marinade recipe for moist grilled chicken skewers (for mole)?

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All,

I've agreed to be the grillmaster for a mole taste-testing party for about 60 people. I need to make bite-sized pieces of chicken for people to dip in to mole (they are testing 4 diffferent recipes to decide which one to enter in a city-wide contest).

I therefore need to make the chicken neutral-flavored, BUT not dried out, so as not to clash or confuse with the mole sauce. All of my favorite marinade/chicken grill recipes involve big flavors.

Cooks Illustrated has this wacky bacon puree that they baste chicken skewers with... that's a nonstarter because of the bacon flavor.

Thoughts? also, dark or white meat?

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  1. I'd use a generic salt brine.

    4 Replies
    1. re: Kelli2006

      dry or wet?

      1. re: kingfisher5

        Wet.

        Packing meat with dry salt will not add any moisture and it will instead draw moisture out of the meat because the salt on the outside is much dryer than the meat. Moisture wants to seek an equilibrium so it will move from the wetter meat to the very dry salt, so it is technically a cure despite what some authors claim.

        You could replace 1-2 cups of the water with apple cider or cider vinegar because it is relatively neutral in flavor.

        1. re: Kelli2006

          Definitely a wet brine. I'd probably add peppercorns, bay leaves and honey. None of those flavors are too big and the chicken should be perfectly moist.

          1. re: nihongojoe

            thanks to both of you! should I be concerned about the chicken being too salty if I brine it in bite-sized pieces?