The thought of marinating may make you want to run and hide, but it can be simple. Follow these tips and tricks, and you’ll have a tender, tasty plate of fish, veggies or meat in no time.

What you need:

Marinades usually have three main ingredients: an oil, an acid and seasonings.

Oil: Oils prevent the food from drying out. Olive oil is the healthiest and most versatile choice, but other oils like sesame and peanut can be used for any Asian-inspired dish
Acid: Acids make the meat tender and help absorb the flavors. Some include citrus juice, wine or vinegar.
Seasonings: Seasonings impart great flavors. Consider using garlic, ginger, soy sauce or  fresh herbs for a savory dish, add chili pepper for a kick and sugar or honey for a sweet dish.

Homegrown Garlic, Rosemary & Lemon Thyme

Photo by Susy Morris

Tip: Use any salad dressing or sauce as a simple marinade if you don’t have time to make your own.

What to do:

1. Mix marinade ingredients together.

June 13 - Marinade

Photo by Scott Hamlin

2. Put raw meat in a plastic freezer bag. Pour marinade into bag. Close completely and refrigerate. Usually the longer the food is marinating, the better, but don’t overdo it. Small pieces of meat or seafood usually take about 2 to 4 hours. Larger cuts take 4 to 6 hours.

3. Cook and enjoy.

Marinated Steak

Photo by Jamie