Strange brining results--advice?
I cooked a couple of chickens on the rotisserie last night. They were nice fat ones--6 to 7 pounds.
I had brined them using the recipe in Ruhlman's 'Charcuterie'--basically, 1 cup of salt per gallon, plus whatever herbs & spices I wanted. The recipe called for 1/2 cup of sugar, but I didn't have any so I didn't use it.
Brined them for about 8 hours, then rinsed them off. Put them back in the fridge, in the now-empty brining pot, oriented vertically--tail up, neck cavity down--for about another 10 hours until it was time to cook them.
Trussed them, then covered the breasts with foil at the beginning of the rotisserizing, removed the foil after about 45 minutes. Took about another 45 minutes for the breast meat to get to 165 degrees.
They came out picture perfect beautiful, golden brown. The breast meat came out exquisite: juicy, flavorful, perfectly seasoned, not at all dry. The dark meat came out excessively salty. Not so salty that it was inedible, but far saltier than I would have preferred.
My question is this: does dark meat have a special affinity for salt compared with white meat? I'm curious as to why one came out perfect, and the other didn't.
Next time I'll halve the salt, use the sugar it called for, and lessen the time in the brine to 4 or 6 hours.
(By the way, this reminds me of a Churchill story. Winston was at a Georgetown dinner party at which chicken was served. He asked the hostess for some more breast, and the blushing hostess informed him that here in the US we used the term 'white meat'. The next day Winston sent her a corsage along with a note that read, 'I would be most obliged if you would pin this on your white meat.')