Makes 1 quart- make up additional amounts of brine if needed until meat is submerged.
Stir ingredients together in a saucepan and bring to a boil.
Continue stirring until sugar is dissolved.
Allow to cool.
Place meat or poultry in a food safe plastic bag inside another container for support and leakage control (oven roasting bags are a fine choice- NOT garbage bags).
Pour cooled brine into bag, and squeeze out as much air as possible and seal with a twistie tie.
Refrigerate for 3-4 hours for 3 pounds meat (such as pork ribs), 5-6 hours for a nice roasting hen, or 12-24 hours for a turkey, 12 hours being for a small one and the longer time for those turkeys around 20+ pounds.
Discard brine before using and pat meat dry.
If using poultry, you may want to add citrus fruit such as oranges or lemons, additional fresh herbs, or cloves of garlic into the cavity.