This Citrus Serrano Brine recipe is super easy, packs major flavor and keeps your grilled meat moist. Brining is like a marinade in that it adds flavor, but it’s main purpose is to keep the meat moist and tender. I’ve found that brined poultry and other meats like these boneless pork loin chops are more flavorful and succulent. Brining is a way of increasing the moisture holding capacity of meat resulting in a moister product when it is cooked.
I start off with equal parts kosher salt and sugar, peppercorns, fresh oregano and thyme, serrano peppers sliced down the middle and garlic cloves. Steeping the ingredients for 10 minutes in boiling water to bring out essential oils is imperative. Then shocking with equal parts of cold water stir to mix and add the sliced tangelos or oranges. Add the pork or chicken and allow to brine for a minimum 5 hours or best if overnight.
This is a super penetrating way to get maximum flavor and these ingredients impart such a wonderful flavor. Spicy and peppery with the hint of herbal and tangy citrus flavors add to the grilled meat.
These boneless pork loin chops were super plump and were perfect for grilling. The brining may give the meat a white appearance, but certainly didn’t deter me from making an incredible meal. Pork is the “other” white meat!
Cooked as I normally would, these were delicious on their own.
I thought of making a nice citrus sauce to nap over the grilled boneless pork loin chops and after slicing to test the meat, found it to be great and flavorful all on it’s own. I ended up serving it alongside some beautiful Asparagus and Fennel Orzo.
Serrano Citrus Brine Recipe
- 1/4 cup sugar
- 1/4 cup kosher salt
- 2 serrano chilies
- 6 garlic cloves
- several sprigs of fresh thyme
- several sprigs of fresh oregano
- 1 tbsp peppercorns
- 2 tangelos or oranges
- 8 cups water separated
- In a contain large enough to submerge the meat add the first seven ingredients. Be sure to use the side of a knife and crack the garlic cloves and peppercorns.
- Add 4 cups of boiling water and allow to steep for 10 minutes. Stir to dissolve the sugar and salt.
- Add the juice of 1 tangelo or orange, the other sliced and the 4 cups of cold water. Mix thoroughly and gently add the meat being sure to keep covered with liquid brine.
- Cover and allow to brine a minimum of 5 hours , but I find it best if overnight.
- Remove from brine and grill meat to your liking.