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Main-Dish Marinades

Marinades are great for adding flavor and keeping meat moist and tender.
Marinades are great for adding flavor and keeping meat moist and tender.

Turn ordinary cuts of pork, beef, and chicken into stellar entrées with flavorful soaking sauces.

Marinade Recipes:

Nail the right combination of acidic, sweet, salty, and seasoning components-balanced with the perfect amount of marinating time-and you'll fall in love with the results. The food will be richly browned, with a tender (not mealy) texture and a hint of marinade flavor that doesn't overpower. Tune up your skills with the "practice" recipes here, and before you know it you'll be mastering your own tasty concoctions.

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Marinade Mixology
"Our recipes are a starting point to help you make your own easy marinades," says Test Kitchens food chemist Kristi Michele Crowe. Every marinade should have one or more ingredients from each of the four categories below. You also need a small amount of olive or vegetable oil to carry these flavors into the meat. "One suggestion," Kristi adds, "is to taste the marinade before adding the meat. Taste for a balance of flavors much as you would a salad dressing."

Acidic ingredients

Sweet additions

Salty components

Spices and seasonings

Marinade Primer

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