For us, the epitome of summer is that long lingering evening sitting in the backyard with friends, drinking wine, and feeling oh-so-satiated after a delectable cookout. Summer food is just the best. Fresh, juicy fruits, grilled-to-perfection veggies, herbs on everything, and of course, the star of the show, sweet and smokey grilled meat.
You might be asking yourself: “Why is a goat yogurt company talking about grilling meat?” Well, we’re here to let you in on the best-kept secret in barbecue, the grilling trick Bon Appetit dares to claim “will change your life.”
Yogurt marinade. Yes, it may sound strange to slather your raw meat in dairy, but trust us, the result is some of the juiciest, most tender meat you’ll ever have.
What’s so special about a yogurt marinade?
(Warning, foodie geek-out moment about to ensue). All marinades use acid—think lemon juice or vinegar—to breakdown protein and help tenderize the meat. Fermented dairy products, such as yogurt or buttermilk, contain lactic acid which, according to Popular Science, “react with the proteins in meat at the molecular level.” The yogurt actually breaks down the connective protein wall, acidifying the muscle fiber, enabling the meat to absorb more moisture and flavor.
Translation? Yogurt tenderizes meat more gently and effectively than other marinades resulting in barbecue that is juicy and tender, every time. It’s especially good with leaner meats such as chicken or shrimp that have a tendency to dry out when cooked.
But wait, there’s more.
Yogurt marinades literally make your life easier. Unlike other marinades that turn your meat into rubber if you leave it too long, yogurt is very forgiving (thanks to the higher PH, if you must know). You can marinate for 30 minutes or overnight, it’s all good. Or, should you be distracted by all your awesome guests—or your awesome guest’s not-so-awesome dog digging up your freshly-planted herb garden—and you forget to remove your skewers from the grill when you should, fear not. Yogurt helps lock-in moisture so even slightly overcooked items are still juicy.
Easy to do? Check. Juicy, flavorful barbecue every time? Check.
How about the end result? Here’s the best part. Met with a hot grill, the yogurt coating creates a wonderfully crisp, caramelized crust around your chicken or shrimp, achieving that perfect balance of sweet and smokey.
So, why go goat?
Have we convinced you that yogurt is the Greatest Of All Time of marinades? Yes? Great!
So the only question remains, why would you choose goat yogurt over other options? Two words: flavor balance. According to our friends over at The Spruce Eats, the “tangy top note provided by an acid ingredient will help add zing and freshness to [meat’s] otherwise heavy flavor.” And nothing lends tang like goat’s milk yogurt, making it the ideal choice for your next adventure in marinading. So, go forth on your quest for that perfect bite of succulent barbecue and don’t forget to tag us in your creations when you finally #GoGoat.
Need help getting started? We goat you! Try one of our recipes.