RECIPE: Easy Brined Lemon Garlic Grilled Chicken
Grilled chicken is often a light and easy thing to do during the summer. However, it is often innocuous flavor-wise as well as dried out. I am not a huge fan. If we grill chicken breasts it's usually for a bigger dish like an Asian salad or pasta toss. But sometimes you want something light and easy as a main for those busy nights, and I have the ticket right here.
Brining the breasts in one simple step is easy. After reading a Cooks Illustrated, we found that brining does not get better with time or salt amounts. The protein will only absorb so much salt water, period. Usually it only takes an hour to get it to that point. We tried it a few times this summer, and it worked wonders on our "no-fuss chicken nights". The secret is just one simple hour-no more, no less. From there, continue with your recipe.
We served this chicken with a simple Caprese salad and corn on the cob. Pretty easy. Pretty yummy. This just might make me a "chicken on the grill fan" yet!
Easy Brined Lemon Garlic Grilled Chicken
1 lb. chicken breasts, trimmed
1/4 cup salt
water to cover
11 x 7 square pan
Juice of 1 lemon
1/8 cup chopped parsley
1/8 tsp. ground pepper
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 1/2 Tbsp. olive oil
1/4 cup chicken broth (I dissolved 1/4 tsp. "Better Than Bouillon" in 1/4 cup warm water)
Lay the chicken in the dish. Pour cold water over to cover all the chicken. Add the salt and mix until dissolved. Let sit at room temp. for one hour (any longer will need refrigeration). Take the breasts out and rinse well under cold water and pat dry. Add them to a gallon sized sealable bag. Set aside.
In a small bowl, mix the parsley with the lemon juice, garlic, chicken broth and pepper. With a fork, whisk in the olive oil until emulsified. Add the marinade to the chicken in the bag. Push the air out and seal. Mix the chicken around with the liquid and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes or for up to 4 hours. The longer the marinating, the better.
Grill the chicken over low flame until juices come out clear, about 4-5 minutes on each side. A meat thermometer should read 165˚-175˚ in the middle. Serve warm.