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Wet Brine Math help

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    Wet Brine Math help

    I tried wet brining a few pork chops for the first time the other day. It came out way to salty and I think I mixed up the weights and volumes thing

    I added 1/4 cup (volume) of Morton kosher salt to 16 oz (vol) of water.
    After rereading Meathead book on wet brine again I tried to get the “ weight” thing figured out.
    If I target 7.7% wet brine by weight, I have a gallon of water = 8.34 lb, 7.7% of that would be .64 lb of salt to be added to a gallon of water. .64 lb of salt is 10 oz (wt) of salt. I only want to use a pint of brine so 8 pints in a gallon means divide the 10 oz(wt) of salt by 8 to get 1.25 oz(wt) salt for one pint of water. 1.25 oz(wt) Morton kosher salt comes to about 1 fluid oz volume. So it looks like I need one fluid oz of Morton kosher salt to one pint of water for the wet brine. My first wet brine used 1/4 cup Morton kosher salt in a pint of water so it likes I had double the amount required.

    Can anyone verify my math or just say an ounce(vol) of Morton kosher salt per pint of water sounds right?
    (my head hurts.......)

    #2
    You have just given a great reason to dry brine. My eyes glazed over after reading line 3...

    Comment


    • smokenoob
      smokenoob commented
      Editing a comment
      RonB my eyes were glazed when I started!

    • smokenoob
      smokenoob commented
      Editing a comment
      RonB The reason for trying wet brine was I was hoping to thaw a frozen pork chop in brine to get two steps into one.......but I failed at walking and chewing gum so........

    #3
    So a 7.7% brine is pretty salty to begin with. I prefer a 6.4% brine as recommended by our own Dr. Blonder. To do this properly you really should have a scale, and it is much easier to use the metric system. For a 7.7% brine, if that's the way you want to go, then you need 77 grams of any salt (and since this is measuring weight and not volume, the type of salt doesn't matter) per liter of water. 64 grams per liter for a 6.4% solution.

    Comment


    • pkadare
      pkadare commented
      Editing a comment
      Troutman - actually no, that's not the case at all:
      "Shortcut: Use metrics to make brines
      Making brines is easiest using metrics and a scale. To make a 6% brine just add 60 grams of salt, any salt, to 1 liter of water."
      https://amazingribs.com/tested-recip...nd-wet-brining
      The portion you posted is dealing with volume and not weight.

    • Troutman
      Troutman commented
      Editing a comment
      pkadare Yea I get the volume versus weight argument, I use the displacement method myself. He described using a volumetric measurement so I responded as such. When you use the displacement method with kosher it does end up being close to 2 cups (or 1.8 as he describes)

    • pkadare
      pkadare commented
      Editing a comment
      Troutman - he uses both methods in that post. My comment was specifically talking about the weight, as per his post, in which the type of salt doesn't matter.

    #4
    I think your math is fine based on the 7%. My question is where did you get a1/4 cup of salt per pint of water? That’s really high. I usually do 1cup of kosher to one gallon of water (along with equal parts brown sugar) for a turkey wet brine. I think that’s obviously where you may have errored.

    Comment


    • smokenoob
      smokenoob commented
      Editing a comment
      pg 37 of Meatheads book said 2 cups kosher salt per gallon of water, I just fractioned from there. Maybe he meant to double the water, not the salt when he wrote “double the volume”?
      Last edited by smokenoob; April 19, 2020, 09:51 AM.

    #5
    The other aspect of this is the time spent in the brine. You didn't say anything about how long you brined the chops. Regardless of whether you're using a 6.4% or 7.7% brine, meat will become very salty if left too long in the brine.

    Comment


    • smokenoob
      smokenoob commented
      Editing a comment
      ah, good to know, think I had mine in solution 4 hours

      ah. I see on page 161 it says for a 1” cut, 1-2 hours in brine so I had to much salt and did it to long......oh boy!
      Last edited by smokenoob; April 19, 2020, 10:26 AM.

    • Troutman
      Troutman commented
      Editing a comment
      Good point !! If you're doing a couple of pork chops I'd go no more than a few hours. It's not like dry brining that reaches equilibrium, if left over night they would taste like the Great Salt Lake.

    • IowaGirl
      IowaGirl commented
      Editing a comment
      It doesn't seem like 4 hours should be all that different than 1-2 hours, but it is when it comes to wet brining. I'm glad you figured out the problem!

    #6
    I think I will dial this in empirically, keep reducing salt or time until I find what I like.....
    Sounds like I was close on salt solution and long on time. Next time I’ll try one hour and a little less salt in the pint of water

    Comment


    • Troutman
      Troutman commented
      Editing a comment
      Bingo, it's what your taster tells you is right.

    #7
    I think this all started with me talking about wet brining pork chops :-)

    I use Doc Blonder’s 6.4% brine and scale accordingly. I never go more than about 90 minutes in the brine, usually just 60.

    I think the length of time you brined is the primary culprit. The best way to do the brine is weigh the salt. OR you can use the displacement method a la Doc Blonder’s approach.
    Last edited by ecowper; April 19, 2020, 10:48 AM.

    Comment


    • smokenoob
      smokenoob commented
      Editing a comment
      Yeah, you started it! LOL! When I read up on it I didn’t see the part about time in brine.....doh!
      Thanks for chiming in!

    • ecowper
      ecowper commented
      Editing a comment
      If you do end up with the meat in a wet brine too long, you can soak in fresh water to remove some of the salt. Try giving it 60 minutes in fresh water.

    #8
    Ok, here goes. A pint of water weighs about a pound which is 16 oz. 6% of 16 oz is .96 oz(wt).
    So I will add this much salt to a pint of water on the next try!

    edit: and brine for about 1 hour
    Attached Files
    Last edited by smokenoob; April 19, 2020, 11:04 AM.

    Comment


    • ecowper
      ecowper commented
      Editing a comment
      Sounds right to me .... a pint is .47 Liter and an ounce is 28 grams. 6.4% brine for a pint would be 30 grams .... so you going with .96 oz will be really close to 6%. If your scale can do metric measures, weigh out 500 grams of water (half a liter) and weigh out 32 grams of salt and you will be precisely at 6.4%
      Last edited by ecowper; April 19, 2020, 11:07 AM.

    • smokenoob
      smokenoob commented
      Editing a comment
      Woo Hoo!!!

    #9
    I have done that so many times, by the way, that I just eyeball the salt now. So, I poured out the amount of Morton’s that my eye says is right for 16 oz of water and weighed it. I sorta impressed myself

    Click image for larger version

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    Comment


    • smokenoob
      smokenoob commented
      Editing a comment
      Dayum! Calibrated eyeball!

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