• 2 garlic cloves, peeled
  • 2 serrano chiles, stemmed, seeded, and chopped
  • 1 large onion, peeled
  • 1 celery stalk, trimmed and chopped
  • 1 carrot, trimmed, peeled, and chopped
  • 1 fresh thyme sprig
  • 1 fresh basil sprig
  • 1 fresh cilantro sprig
  • 1 fresh flat-leaf parsley sprig
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 gallon cold water
  • 1/4 cup dry white wine
  • 1/2 cup white wine vinegar
  • 1 cup salt


Put the garlic, chiles, onion, celery, carrot, thyme, basil, cilantro, parsley, and bay leaf in a large stockpot. Add the cold water along with the wine and vinegar. Stir in the salt, place over high heat, and bring to a boil. Lower the heat and simmer for 20 minutes.

Remove the brine from the heat and set aside to cool completely.

When cool, strain through a fine-mesh sieve and discard the solids.

Depending on the size of the meat (or fowl or game) that you are going to smoke, place the brine either in a resealable plastic bag large enough to hold the meat, or in a nonreactive container of the appropriate size. Submerge the meat in the brine and soak for 30 minutes per pound.

When brined, remove the meat from the brine, shaking off the excess. Season the meat, place in the prepared smoker, and smoke according to the manufacturer's directions.

The brine may be frozen and reused up to 3 times. If you do so, always reboil before using.

Makes 1 gallon

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Submitted 4/29/14.
Source: The Texas Food Bible: From Legendary Dishes to New Classics by Dean Fearing
Submitted By: b smith

Texas Brine for Smoking Meat, Game, or Fowl