How do they do it?? How does that restaurant have such tender and juicy steaks? How come there chicken is not dry? Where does that flavor come from on their seafood? Is it a mystery? Most likely not....It is probably a marinade!
I love marinades because they do a few things that really help with the cooking process. First, they break down some fo the fibers and tenderize the meat. Now, the marinade won't penetrate the entire piece of meat like a brine will but, it will still provide some great benefits. Second, it provides a nice coating of oil over the meat or fish so it won't dry out. and Lastly, it helps keep your seasonings adhered to your dish.
Let's talk about the basic make up of a marinade; Fat, Acid, and Flavor.
Fat - Oil - In our case we would recommend you start with our blend olive oil. As your skills and your flavor profiles expand we suggest you try some of our flavored Olive oils.
Acid - vinegar, Citrus juice, wine, dairy - We recommend trying our traditional balsamic vinegar or one of our flavored balsamic vinegars.
Flavor - Herbs, Spices, Blends - We have over 90 different blends and many different single source items to choose from.
The mix guideline is 3 parts fat to 1 part acid and add flavoring, as you desire. We recommend to go light on salt, as it can pull moisture from meat and poultry.
Timing is key. If you over marinade you will have mush or in the case of seafood the marinade can actually cook or cure your seafood if you marinade too long. We recommend marinading in glass or plastic such as a resealable plastic bag. Metals can be reactive to the marinades and not suitable for marinading. Please discard any marinade after using. It is not safe to use.
Suggested Marinade Times
Beef 8 to 24 hours
Chicken 4 to 6 hours
Fish 15 to 20 min
Pork 6 to 12 hours
Shrimp and Scallops 5 to 10 min
Vegetables 15 to 30 min
Mix your marinade, pour into your dish or resealable bag.
Add your meat, fish or vegetable.
Close or cover your dish
Place in refrigerator to applicable time.
Prepare according to your preferred method.
Look for marinades coming to our recipe site soon.