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hallow 01-10-2020 08:21 AM

My mind was blown today
 
I am normally not the type of person to complain about meat. But today I cooked 3lbs of frozen boneless skinless chicken thighs in the crock pot. (The cheap stuff I was cooking for work). I didn't add anything at all to the chicken. When it was done cooking there was enough water in it to make chicken soup. How can 3lbs pounds of chicken turn into 1 1/2lbs? The rest was mostly water. I understand cooking beef, the fat cooks off. But there was no fat on the chicken. It's just really weird to me.
Does organic chicken do the same thing?? I have made chicken thighs with the bone and skin many times and never had that much water.

bobjob 01-10-2020 01:25 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by hallow
I am normally not the type of person to complain about meat. But today I cooked 3lbs of frozen boneless skinless chicken thighs in the crock pot. (The cheap stuff I was cooking for work). I didn't add anything at all to the chicken. When it was done cooking there was enough water in it to make chicken soup. How can 3lbs pounds of chicken turn into 1 1/2lbs? The rest was mostly water. I understand cooking beef, the fat cooks off. But there was no fat on the chicken. It's just really weird to me.
Does organic chicken do the same thing?? I have made chicken thighs with the bone and skin many times and never had that much water.


There used to be a time when chicken was injected with water and/or broth to increase both it's overall size and also its weight, effectively leaving us buying water rather than meat. Might that be the case for you?

I always look for cuts with labels indicating "Less than 3% retained water." but when I've not looked carefully enough and bought the wrong stuff I've found that lots of water is lost when cooking, huge amounts of steam released from the contact grill I use routinely. 15% added broth isn't uncommon in US grocery stores. I find the meat is wet/greasy and over-soft after cooking, more like slow-cooker meat.

I haven't cooked any organic chicken but labelling should disclose what's been added, if anything. And the word 'organic' may mean something different from what we'd perhaps expect it to mean. :wink:

ketzer 01-10-2020 01:43 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by hallow
I am normally not the type of person to complain about meat. But today I cooked 3lbs of frozen boneless skinless chicken thighs in the crock pot. (The cheap stuff I was cooking for work). I didn't add anything at all to the chicken. When it was done cooking there was enough water in it to make chicken soup. How can 3lbs pounds of chicken turn into 1 1/2lbs? The rest was mostly water. I understand cooking beef, the fat cooks off. But there was no fat on the chicken. It's just really weird to me.
Does organic chicken do the same thing?? I have made chicken thighs with the bone and skin many times and never had that much water.

Not entirely surprising, some possible factors to think about.
1) The cheap stuff does often have brine added so that may be part of the answer.
2) The thighs are tastier IMO, because they have much more fat that the breasts.
3) When you freeze meat, ice crystals form and puncture cell membranes allowing additional water to seep out when thawed and cooked. I always notice a big difference between cooking fresh (never frozen) and thawed meat of any kind.
4) You cooked them in a crock pot, a frying pan would have been evaporating much of that water as it cooks, the CP keeps it in the pot.
5) Poultry muscle is about 75% water.
6) You as a whole have an even higher % water content. After all, you are an ugly bag of mostly water...according to some. And perhaps a bit hard of hearing, according to them anyway.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=43DJ1sJJ6Hw

inavalan 01-10-2020 07:47 PM

Maybe this helps ... :smile:
COOKING OF MEAT | Physics and Chemistry
In book: Encyclopedia of Meat Sciences (pp.404-409)
https://www.researchgate.net/publica..._and_Chemistry
Quote:

Muscle tissue contains approximately 75% of water and 20% of protein consisting of sarcoplasmic, myofibrillar, and connective-tissue proteins. During heating, the thermal denaturation of the meat proteins occurs. According to differential scanning calorimetry measurements, a-actinin denatures at 50 C; myosin and actomyosin between 54 and 58 C; sarcoplasmic proteins between 65 and 67 C; actin between 80 and 83 C; tropomyosin and troponin at above 80 C; and titin at 75.6 C (in beef) or 78.4 C (in pork). Generally, during heating the globular (sarcoplasmic) proteins expand and fibrous (myofibrillar) proteins contract. The intramuscular collagen fibers shrink in the range of temperature 5365 C and gelatinize on further heating (7080 C). The structural changes in the meat proteins on heating lead to alterations in the eating quality of meat.
Quote:



Effect of heating temperature on cooking losses (-) and sarcomere length (---) of beef ST muscle samples retorted after 5 days ageing at 4 C. Reproduced from Palka, K., Daun, H., 1999. Changes in texture, cooking losses, and myofibrillar structure of bovine M. semitendinosus during heating. Meat Science 51, 237-243.

ketzer 01-10-2020 08:12 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by inavalan
Maybe this helps ... :smile:
COOKING OF MEAT | Physics and Chemistry
In book: Encyclopedia of Meat Sciences (pp.404-409)
https://www.researchgate.net/publica..._and_Chemistry

"
Muscle tissue contains approximately 75% of water and 20% of protein consisting of sarcoplasmic, myofibrillar, and connective-tissue proteins. During heating, the thermal denaturation of the meat proteins occurs. According to differential scanning calorimetry measurements, a-actinin denatures at 50 C; myosin and actomyosin between 54 and 58 C; sarcoplasmic proteins between 65 and 67 C; actin between 80 and 83 C; tropomyosin and troponin at above 80 C; and titin at 75.6 C (in beef) or 78.4 C (in pork). Generally, during heating the globular (sarcoplasmic) proteins expand and fibrous (myofibrillar) proteins contract. The intramuscular collagen fibers shrink in the range of temperature 5365 C and gelatinize on further heating (7080 C). The structural changes in the meat proteins on heating lead to alterations in the eating quality of meat."
They should put that in an Outback Steakhouse commercial, it really sets my mouth to waterin!
Which I suppose makes me a leaky ugly bag of mostly water. :smile:

inavalan 01-10-2020 08:52 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by ketzer
"
Muscle tissue contains approximately 75% of water and 20% of protein consisting of sarcoplasmic, myofibrillar, and connective-tissue proteins. During heating, the thermal denaturation of the meat proteins occurs. According to differential scanning calorimetry measurements, a-actinin denatures at 50 C; myosin and actomyosin between 54 and 58 C; sarcoplasmic proteins between 65 and 67 C; actin between 80 and 83 C; tropomyosin and troponin at above 80 C; and titin at 75.6 C (in beef) or 78.4 C (in pork). Generally, during heating the globular (sarcoplasmic) proteins expand and fibrous (myofibrillar) proteins contract. The intramuscular collagen fibers shrink in the range of temperature 5365 C and gelatinize on further heating (7080 C). The structural changes in the meat proteins on heating lead to alterations in the eating quality of meat."
They should put that in an Outback Steakhouse commercial, it really sets my mouth to waterin!
Which I suppose makes me a leaky ugly bag of mostly water. :smile:

That's why I quoted it ...


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