Tenderize then Cure or visa versa?

Discussion in 'Curing' started by pit 4 brains, Jul 21, 2016.

  1. pit 4 brains

    pit 4 brains Master of the Pit Group Lead OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    I am looking for a way to improve my curing technique/recipe for dove breasts or any other small meat snack (Mods please do not move to wild game section).

    Currently, I start with clean, boneless breast halves. I cure them overnight - 24 hrs using a dry application of Morton's Tenderquick. I then rinse, dry,  season, rest, then put on the smoke for an IT of 145.

    The end product is a nice, somewhat tender (meat can be a little chewy) and flavorful piece of meat that will last quite a while in ziplock bags (like jerky).

    I'm wanting to improve the tenderness a little by using raw pineapple juice for its bromelain and flavor. I'm thinking there should be just enough bromelain to break down the tissue just enough without making it mushy.

    The big question is, should I marinade in the pineapple juice before curing, after curing, or use the TQ as a wet brine and incorporate the juice into the brine?

    Is there enough bromelain in one pineapple to be effective considering the size of the breasts?



    Cured and resting.


    Delicious take-anywhere snacks..

  2. dirtsailor2003

    dirtsailor2003 Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    I would suggest experimenting with a breast or two, just plain pineapple no cure. Every marinade that I have used pineapple in has made the meat go to mush. Get the meat to the tenderness you want, that matches the cure time you need with the TQ. Then I'd wet brine cure with the pineapple juice as part of the wet brine. Make sense?
  3. pit 4 brains

    pit 4 brains Master of the Pit Group Lead OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    So determine how long to brine, say 12 hours. Now find the amount of pineapple to just get it tender in 12 hours, then use that much in the brine.. I think I got it.

    Does the pineapple turn meat to mush really quick? I've never used it as a marinade before.

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