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Brined Vs. Un-Brined Chickens: A Taste Off! - Page 3

post #41 of 57
Thanks for the test and detailed results. I think this was as fair a test as you could do.

It's a no brainer that the brined bird will have more flavor, but is it the flavor you want. Certainly this is personal and also dependent on the brine. I continue to sit on the fence and brine sometimes and other times not.

Good job!
post #42 of 57
The fence is the place to be as a cook/chef IMO. I'd NEVER want to have the one way I always do it; I think that would be a terrible thing given the incredible variety of choices available to us.

The only time such a method pays off is if you're trying to develop a commercial brand with a strong identity for sale & profit.
post #43 of 57
I would suggest that perhaps the meat was "mushy" because it was brined too long. If you cut the time down to 6 or 8 hours, you may reduce this with no loss of juiciness.

post #44 of 57
I use a cooler with ice. Keeps very nice through the night.

I noticed in the OP that you are using a metal bowl. I have read in places that you should not use metal when brining. Not sure if this is true or not, and if so I am not sure why.

I have always used a cooler when I brined.
post #45 of 57
My vote would go to the brined chicken, I cooked a 4lb chicken last night and did not brine. Same smoke and temp and rub, as the brined chicks I've done in the past.I didn't tell my wife that I did any thing different, First thing she says is this didn't come out as good as the last one. The receipt that I use I got from another site several months ago, and I use it in place of beer can chicken. I butter fly then brine for 4 to 6 hours.

4 cups hot water
¾ cup kosher salt
¾ cup dark brown sugar, packed
1 tablespoon coursely ground black pepper
6 bay leaves, crumbled
2 X 12 oz. bottles/cans cold lager beer
1 tray of ice cubes
2 cups cold water
2 teaspoons sweet paprika
½ teaspoon ground cumin
½ teaspoon kosher salt
½ teaspoon dark brown sugar, packed
¼ teaspoon celery salt
¼ teaspoon chili powder
¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
pinch of dried oregano
post #46 of 57
Well, now you have me thinking. BUT, I have done it for years, and know many others who do this as well. so I am assuming so. But like everything else in this world, I am sure there are those who will tell me its not. But we are all still alive and healthy so I will take that as a sign that yes, they are safe to use for brining.
post #47 of 57
I just looked at the boxes I have here. The smaller white bags for in the house say do not use for food storage. But it doesn't say why. The larger black bags, for large trash cans don't say anything.

I'm not trying to be a smart-arse here but, I've know folks who smoked tobacco their whole lives and showed no ill effects. But I won't start smoking because of that either..........
post #48 of 57
I use a a porcelain-coated lobster pot. Works well, but takes lotsa room in the fridge.
post #49 of 57
Good work, however I agree that a completely unseasoned chicken will never beat a seasoned chicken in a taste test. I think a better comparison would have been a brined bird vs an injected bird. A good buttery injection is awful hard to beat. Looks like Tip has a good injection recipe there.
post #50 of 57
I have to go along with Flash and say that nothing beats a rotisserie bird. I have one of those Ron Popiel Showtime rotisseries that really is set it and forget it. I also have a Smoke daddy that I can use to direct smoke into the smoke daddy. The chicken turns out moist and very flavourful with a really nice crispy skin.

In my opinion nothing else brined or unbrined comes close.... but now your test has got me thinking ( a dangerous thing ) ..... brine a chicken then do it in the Showtime ......hmmmmm.....wonder how that would turn out.

Thanks Rivet for all your fine work on this. Points!
post #51 of 57
I hear ya. But I did not use a trash bag because someone told me they did it for years. It is I that have used it for years with no ill effects. So while i expect no one to use a trash bag because I have said I have used it for years, I am just saying that I have no ill effects from actual usage of it, so I am basing my opinion on actual experience.

I have smoked tobacco most of my life, I wish I could say i have no ill effects from it. lol.
post #52 of 57

brine bucket?

I use a clean cooler with 2 liter bottles filled with water and frozen to keep the birds held under and cold, works well when hams or bacon are brined for a long time, just change the bottles out every day, it won't water down the brine that way.
post #53 of 57
man cool test!! Last time I did some quarters I forgot to brine, I couldn't tell the difference, but I guess side by side there really is a difference. I just hate going through the mess of brining but will if we have company over. Nice job on that!
post #54 of 57
I am smoking a whole mess of chicken breasts, legs and wings today...brined it all...

The perk I have found with is the poultry will soak up more water due to the high salt content...and be juicier at the end of the smoke.
post #55 of 57
I wouldn't be using a regular trash bag, some manufacturers even use deodorizers, UV stabilizers or insecticides in their resins. Nothing we want in our food.

Here's what Glad Bag people say, from their site under FAQ.

Can I store food for a party in GLAD Trash Bags?

No. GLAD Trash Bags are not recommended for food storage. However, GLAD Food Bags and GladWare® Containers are ideal for food storage and come in various sizes to suit your needs.

Our other trash and garbage products are made from plastic resins that are not recommended for food storage use. Of course, the resin used for GLAD Food Storage Bags has been approved by the FDA for contact with foods.

I'd use a oven cooking bag instead.
post #56 of 57
Thread Starter 
Thanks Ron!

Again, the results ~to me~ showed no difference.

In fairness to the test, most all preferred the brined one.

During tasting interviews, a lot said that given the taste difference, it was not worth the extra hassle of brining.

So, it is what it is. Even discounting my lack of tastebuds icon_mrgreen.gif I am still not convinced that brining a retail, store-bought bird is worth the effort other than to make the cook feel better.
post #57 of 57
MMMMM....more salt too PDT_Armataz_01_07.gifPDT_Armataz_01_29.gif
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