Marinating does two things: enhances flavor and tenderizes food. It can be applied to just about any type of food: meat, poulty, fish and even vegetables. The goal is for soak/immerse the food in your marinate for a time, allowing the food to absorb the oils, sugars etc. On top of this, if your marinade contains an acidic component, this will break down your food.
Marinating times vary, but be careful not too marinate too long or your food will become stringy or mushy; especially with tender foods. Always check the instructions/recipe, but a good rule of thumb is 2-3 hours for cubed meats and 12-24 hours for whole pieces ranging from 5 to 10 pounds. Always refrigerate while marinating and if working with non-vegetarian items never reuse your marinade that wasn’t cooked.
Tags: kitchen tips