Pork bits

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Joined Apr 3, 2008
I need help identifying and solving a problem I have when I cook pork, especially in a frying pan.  As it cooks the pork oozes a white liquidish stuff and I don't know why.  This happens regularly when I cook pork.  What is it and how do I get rid of it?

 
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Most grocery store pork is injected with 12-20% saltwater, that is what is oozing out
 
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Most grocery store pork is injected with 12-20% saltwater, that is what is oozing out
Maybeeeeee the grocery stores that you patronize but not mine.  There are no additives in the cuts of pork that I purchase at Harveys and the local Wallys.
 
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I've had that occasionally. I believe it's the same for pork chops, chicken, bacon, fish, etc... in fact ATK wrote an article on it: http://www.americastestkitchenfeed....albumin-and-we-discovered-how-to-minimize-it/
 
Most grocery store pork is injected with 12-20% saltwater, that is what is oozing out
The article refers to salmon but as @French Fries  notes the science would be the same with pork.

According to the author salt actually helps the situation by preventing/slowing the contraction of the tissue near the top and edges and the subsequent release of albumen (which when cooked looks white).

We sometimes "country fry" round steak (hard to find this cut in my area lately) that has been moistened (just water nothing fancy) and heavily dusted with seasoned flour....same thing leaks out.

Let the bits cook until brown then remove to a bowl....replace just before deglazing...adds quite a bit of flavor to the sauce (or since it is a country dish...pan gravy ;-)

mimi
 
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So basically I just scrape it off.  It is especially ugly on fish.  But I also do not like that it stays in the pan and interferes with my sauce.  I end up always having to strain my pan sauce eventhough I don't always want to.
 
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I am inclined to think that @MaryB  is on to something here.

As she says, most  grocery store pork--and chicken, turkey, etc--is full of "retained water." @kokopuffs, you might be very fortunate on this, but if you live in the US I'm betting you just don't know about it. The trick is that when the animal is slaughtered, it's warm, and it's got to be chilled quickly. So the slaughterhouse usually drops it in cold water. As it cools, it absorbs some of that water.

Now that's the start of it, but once you're allowed to chill meat this way, you start thinking, "hey, if I can encourage  the meat to absorb some water, maybe a little super-light brine or whatever, then I can sell water as meat!" And of course the government says, "big corporation wants to undermine the quality of foods provided to the average American customer? Why yes, please! In fact, we'll write up a label you can stick on your product that will validate your dubious practices!"

Here is a flyer from the USDA explaining, in essence, that all that water is just natural and normal and there's nothing you can do about it. Of course, if you purchase equivalent products in, say, Japan, you find that, mysteriously enough, there's a lot less water oozing out in the pan, but the USDA claims that can't be true. (On a similar note, the USDA says that salmonella is just kind of automatically present in chickens and there's nothing you can do about that except cook it gray--despite the fact that (a) chicken and eggs in Japan almost never have salmonella, because they have careful inspection instead, and (b) eliminating salmonella is not a question of a single temperature threshold but rather a time/temperature gradient. The USDA just wants to cover the behinds of the big corporations like Perdue.)

In any event, @Koukouvagia, one way to discern whether this is what's going on would be to buy a fancy pork chop that's been air-chilled. If you don't happen to have a good pork farm nearby, a real butcher or someplace like Whole Foods could set you up on this. Once you have a chop that's got no "retained (deliberately inserted to save $) water," see whether you have the same squodgy white stuff.

I'm betting you don't.
 
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I don't like that white goo either, but it doesn't always happen. I think, as other said, it depend on the meat. Grocery store pork nearly exudes white goo, no matter whether I cook it at hot temps or low & slow. It also happens at the beginning of cooking.

However, I don't seem to get it with chops I cut myself from a whole pork loin, or from the 'real' butcher shop. I usually brine pork before cooking, but that doesn't seem to make a difference.

White goo from salmon, though, happens when I overcook salmon. I like my salmon rare so it rarely happens!
 
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What a crock of 5h![emoji]10013[/emoji]. I'm glad you can see through it.

In the USA, chickens are sold swimming in water, wrapped in sealed plastic.

In France, chickens are sold dry, loosely wrapped in butcher paper. See pic below.

Two completely different ways to handle them, and the results are vastly different as well.
I deleted the photo because I'm drooling. You rotten b&[email protected]$*d! /img/vbsmilies/smilies/laser.gif
 
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I deleted the photo because I'm drooling. You rotten b&[email protected]$*d! /img/vbsmilies/smilies/laser.gif
Hahaha.... that was your standard French butcher. Wait till I send you some pics of my local butcher who deals only with local hunters and local farms - nothing mainstream. As soon as I'm back in France (this summer). I'll tell you what, if you ever come to France, I'll be happy to invite you to visit the local farms and butchers, and after we go shopping we can go back to my home and I'll cook dinner for you. All I ask in return is that you teach me how to sharpen that $#@*(&^) Togiharu chef knife of mine without clipping the tips of my fingers. Heck if you sharpen it for me I may even make you "Iles flottantes" which I personally despise, just so you can say you've had them at least once in your life. /img/vbsmilies/smilies/lol.gif  
 
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I've had îles flottantes and don't love them much either, to be honest. When I get to France and eat you out of house and home, I will certainly sharpen your knives, but I think perhaps we will also make a better dessert than poached meringue!
 
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