Friday, October 14, 2011

In the briny deep

So here's my first attempt at brining pork. This is enough to brine 3 or 4 butterfly pork chops, about 1/2 inch thick, or a smallish pork roast.

Brine for pork

2 cups low sodium chicken broth
1/3 cup Kosher salt (or 1/2 cup table salt, not iodized)
1/4 cup brown sugar
1/2 tsp. black peppercorns
2-3 bay leaves
1/2 Tbsp. vinegar
1 Tsp. dried Valencia orange peel
3 cloves garlic, peeled
2 cups ice water

Combine everything but the ice water in a sauce pan, and heat over medium heat until the salt and sugar are completely dissolved. Remove from heat, and stir in the ice water to cool the mixture. It should be cooler than lukewarm. Place the target meat in a large Ziploc bag, and pour in the brine. Seal the bag, place it in a shallow dish, and refrigerate for at least one hour up to 24. The chops are fine after an hour, a roast would take at least 5. Remove the meat from the brine, pat dry, and cook. You can bake, roast, grill, smoke, even pan fry these to good effect.

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