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DIY Brining Spices


with Mike Johnston
Founder
June 29, 2015
Tags: brine brining DIY seed to seed

We've come up with five flavor profiles for brining spices you can easily make yourself to take your brine in different directions.

If you’re looking for a classic flavor profile for your brine, we’ve got you covered with our Citrus & Savory Brining Spices. Featuring aromatic garlic and bay leaves, the citrus flavors of coriander, lemon, orange, and lemon verbena, as well as sweet allspice and sharp peppercorns, this is a great all-purpose blend for brining turkey, chicken, pork, or shrimp. If you want to branch out a bit, we've come up with five flavor profiles for brining spices you can easily make yourself to take your brine in a different direction.

This summer, we've been cooking with seeds in our Seed to Seed promotion. Seeds and whole spices make up a lot of the ingredients in these DIY brining recipes. The spices will infuse a protein with flavor and a liquid heavy on salt and sugar will help keep that protein tender and juicy so it won't dry out on the summer grill. Click here for some easy Brining 101 instructions and get brining!

Sweet & Savory Brining Spices

Sweet & Savory Brining Spices featuring Mulling Spices and charnushka seeds; great for chicken or pork.

Ingredients:

1 Tbsp. Mulling Spices

1 tsp. charnushka seeds

½ tsp. dehydrated minced garlic

½ tsp. black Malabar peppercorns

1 tsp. premium French thyme

Notes: This recipe yields about 2 Tbsp. brining spices to flavor up to 2 quarts of brine.

Directions: For 2 quarts of brine, place all ingredients except thyme in a small saute pan and toast over medium heat until aromatic, 3 to 4 min., stirring constantly. Add toasted spices to 1½ cups (of your 2 quarts) of brining liquid, along with 1/2 cup salt and 1/4 cup sugar. Crush the thyme by firmly rubbing it in the palms of your hands; this will help release the fullest flavor. Add crushed thyme to the seasoned brining liquid and bring to a boil for 1 to 2 min. Let the boiled, spiced brine cool completely before adding it back to the remaining brining liquid. Tip: You can speed up the cooling process by adding ice cubes.

Suggestions: Try replacing a quarter or less of the liquid for the brine with one or a combination of the following: apple cider, coconut milk, honey, lime juice, orange juice, or pomegranate molasses.

Seasonings this brine would pair well with: Jamaican Jerk Seasoning, Bajan Seasoning, and Cajun Style Blackening Seasoning.

Sweet & Spicy Brining Spices

Sweet & Spicy Brining Spices featuring coriander, fennel, and mustard seeds; works well with shrimp or pork.

Ingredients:

2 tsp. coriander seeds

1 tsp. Saigon cinnamon chips

1 tsp. fennel seeds

1 tsp. yellow mustard seeds

½ tsp. allspice berries

½ tsp. cracked ginger

½ tsp. dehydrated minced garlic

2 to 4 de Arbol chiles, depending on desired spiciness

Notes: This recipe yields about 2 Tbsp. brining spices to flavor up to 2 quarts of brine.

Directions: For 2 quarts of brine, place all ingredients in a small saute pan and toast over medium heat until aromatic, 3 to 4 min, stirring constantly. Add toasted spices to 1½ cups (of your 2 quarts) of brining liquid, along with 1/2 cup salt and 1/4 cup sugar. Bring to a boil for 1 to 2 min. Let the boiled, spiced brine cool completely before adding it back to the remaining brining liquid. Tip: You can speed up the cooling process by adding ice cubes.

Suggestions: Try replacing a quarter or less of the liquid for the brine with one or a combination of the following: apple cider, buttermilk, Savory’s Cajun Cayenne Hot Sauce, coconut milk, lime juice, orange juice, or pomegranate molasses.

Seasonings this brine would pair well with: Asian Delight BBQ Rub, Hidden Cove Lemon Garlic Blend, and Zanzibar Curry.

Minty & Tangy Brining Spices

Minty & Tangy Brining Spices featuring lemon peel, ajowan seeds, and spearmint; scrumptious with shrimp.

Ingredients:

1 tsp. dehydrated minced lemon peel

1 tsp. ajowan seeds

½ tsp. Mysore green peppercorns

½ tsp. dehydrated minced garlic

1 (3-inch) Indonesian cinnamon stick

2 Madagascar cloves

2 tsp. dried spearmint leaves

1 Turkish bay leaf

2 makrut lime leaves

Notes: This recipe yields about 2 Tbsp. brining spices to flavor up to 2 quarts of brine.

Directions: For 2 quarts of brine, place all ingredients except spearmint, bay, and lime leaves in a small saute pan and toast over medium heat until aromatic, 3 to 4 min., stirring constantly. Add toasted spice to 1½ cups (of your 2 quarts) of brining liquid, along with 1/2 cup salt and 1/4 cup sugar. Rub spearmint, bay, and lime leaves firmly in the palms of your hands; this will help release the fullest flavor. Add crushed leaves to the seasoned brining liquid and bring to a boil for 1 to 2 min. Let the boiled, spiced brine cool completely before adding it back to the remaining brining liquid. Tip: You can speed up the cooling process by adding ice cubes.

Suggestions: Try replacing a quarter or less of the liquid for the brine with one or a combination of the following: buttermilk, coconut milk, cranberry juice, grapefruit juice, lime juice, orange juice, tomato juice, or pomegranate molasses.

Seasonings this brine would pair well with: Mt. Olympus Greek Style Seasoning, Red Thai Curry, and Cuban Island Spice.

Citrus & Sweet Brining Spices

Citrus & Sweet Brining Spices featuring fenugreek, and cardamom seeds; perfect for pork chops or ribs.

Ingredients:

2 tsp. dehydrated minced orange peel

1 tsp. dehydrated minced lemon peel

1 tsp. Saigon cinnamon chips

¾ tsp. fenugreek seeds

½ tsp. anise seeds

½ tsp. allspice berries

¼ tsp. inner cardamom seeds

Notes: This recipe yields about 2 Tbsp. brining spices to flavor up to 2 quarts of brine.

Directions: For 2 quarts of brine, place all ingredients in a small saute pan and toast over medium heat until aromatic, 3 to 4 min., stirring constantly. Add toasted spices to 1½ cups (of your 2 quarts) of your brining liquid, along with 1/2 cup salt and 1/4 cup sugar. Bring to a boil for 1 to 2 min. Let the boiled, spiced brine cool completely before adding it back to the remaining brining liquid. Tip: You can speed up the cooling process by adding ice cubes.

Suggestions: Try replacing a quarter or less of the liquid for the brine with one or a combination of the following: apple cider, buttermilk, cranberry juice, grapefruit juice, lime juice, orange juice, or pomegranate molasses.

Seasonings this brine would pair well with: Coastal California Fennel Pollen Rub, Herbes de Provence, and Mt. Hood Toasted Onion All- Purpose Rub.

Curry & Heat Brining Spices

Curry & Heat Brining Spices featuring Bengal Bay Panch Phoron, coriander, and cumin seeds; terrific for tofu.

Ingredients:

2 tsp. Bengal Bay "Panch Phoron"

1 tsp. Saigon cinnamon chips

¾ tsp. cumin seeds

¾ tsp. dehydrated minced onion

½ tsp. blade mace

½ tsp. black Malabar peppercorns

½ tsp. dehydrated minced garlic

¼ tsp. inner cardamom seeds

3 to 5 pequin chiles, depending on desired spiciness

Notes: This recipe yields about 2 Tbsp. brining spices to flavor up to 2 quarts of brine.

Directions: For 2 quarts of brine, place all ingredients in a small saute pan and toast over medium heat until aromatic, 3 to 4 min., stirring constantly. Add toasted spices to 1½ cups (of your 2 quarts) of your brining liquid, along with 1/2 cup salt and 1/4 cup sugar. . Bring to a boil for 1 to 2 min. Let the boiled, spiced brine cool completely before adding it back to the remaining brining liquid. Tip: You can speed up the cooling process by adding ice cubes.

Suggestions: Try replacing a quarter or less of the liquid for the brine with one or a combination of the following: apple cider, buttermilk, Savory’s Mango Hot Sauce, coconut milk, lime juice, orange juice, liquid tamarind paste concentrate, and tomato juice.

Seasonings this brine would pair well with: Garam Masala, Vindaloo, and Tandoori Seasoning.

♦♦


Comments on this Article


Deanna Montgomery (guest), on August 14, 2015

Hi Mike, Just ran across your website & wanted to say I am so happy for your success is this business. I sold you your first bottles in 2003.. I just wanted to say glad to see you doing well & love your website. Sincerely, Deanna

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