To soak a food such as meat, fish or vegetables in a seasoned liquid mixture called a marinade. The purpose of marinating is for the food to absorb the flavors of the marinade or, as in the case of a tough cut of meat, to tenderize. Because most marinades contain acid ingredients, the marinating should be done in a glass, ceramic or stainless steel containernever in aluminum. Foods should be covered and refrigerated while they're marinating. When fruits are similarly soaked, the term used is macerate.
From The Food Lover's Companion, Fourth edition by Sharon Tyler Herbst and Ron Herbst. Copyright © 2007, 2001, 1995, 1990 by Barron's Educational Series, Inc.