Marinating Made Easy
Cooking tips for the caring cook.
The Art of Marinating
The art of marinating was invented during the Renaissance to prevent the spoilage of meat. Marinades are liquid blends that you soak your meat in before cooking it on your grill. Some marinades work in a few hours, others are best if used overnight. Avoid the "10 minute marinades" you see in the store. These are not very effective.
- Freeze rinsed poultry or meat in a resealable plastic freezer bag with enough of your favorite dressing to coat. Thaw, marinating in the refrigerator over night.
- When possible, cut large pieces of meat into smaller portions before marinating.
- Use large, strong plastic zip bags for mess-free marinating. Marinate meats at least 30 minutes, but if time permits, 2 hours is considered the minimum time to marinate.
- Marinate beef in the refrigerator up to 5 days. Boil used marinade before brushing on cooked beef. Discard any uncooked leftover marinade.
- Be sure to get all the excess air out of the bag before sealing.
- A marinade should completely cover the food. If needed, weigh the food down by placing a plate on top of it.
- Highly acidic ingredients such as citrus or fruit juice help to tenderize low-fat meats. For a flavor twist, add 1/4 cup cranberry juice cocktail to your favorite marinade for really tender "juicy" results.