What factors affect chicekn salt/water absorbtion in my soup?

Discussion in 'Food & Cooking' started by chlorinated, Nov 7, 2011.

  1. chlorinated

    chlorinated

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    Hi Guys

    You may remember I was previously asking about how to make the chicken in my soup absorb more salt.  In that thread we basically concluded that with time salt distributes equally in water regardless of weather that water is in the liquid or in the chicken itself.  Therefore there is no way you can make the chicken absorb more salt/taste saltier as it will with time always contain an equal distribution of salt in its water.

    Having cooked again and again to get something that is neither under or over salted I am thinking there are other factors which can make the salt seem/be more saltier even while the idea that salt is equally distributed remains true.

    I can't pinpoint what the factor is, sometimes even though i use the same quantity of water, chicken and salt, sometimes it cooks where the chicken tastes salty and the liquid equally so, other times the liquid tastes overly salty and the chicken less so.  I assume the cause is in the way I am cooking.  Does anybody have any idea what may be causing these different outcomes?

    Suppose you use 4 grams salt, 1kg equal pieces of chicken and 1.5l water every time.  Imagine you boil the chicken for a while, i imagine it will absorb salt, now imagine you overcook it, the chicken will go soft and perhaps more water will leave it and go back into the soups liquid? This would perhaps explain why the liquid tastes salty while the chicken doesn't.  The chicken no longer holds as much water as it is overcooked.

    Anyway I tried to esnure it was lightly cooked today but the liquid still came out too salty and not the chicken.  The previous two days it came out exactly as I wanted.  Can the temperature/speed of heating/cooking affect how much water/salt the chicken will absorb in the first place?  Do you have any ideas?  Based on my cooking results it seems to me it is definately something about how I am cooking which makes the chicken absorb, not absorb in the first place, or absorb then release water/salt.  I just can't figure out which.  Perhaps mine is a question of how does one make chicken absorb and not release water ina  soup?
     
  2. chefbuba

    chefbuba

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    Really, again???????    How hard is it to eff up boiled chicken? 

    I think you need to hire a chemist.

    .
     
  3. phatch

    phatch Moderator Staff Member

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    Also, you're working with natural ingredients. They'll vary from batch to batch and from season to season throughout the year.

    You might also not have bought chicken treated the same way. The evenly salted chicken could have been from a vendor that loads the chicken up with salt water.  This is generally undesirable, but might meet your needs better.
     
  4. chlorinated

    chlorinated

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    I am buying the chicekn fom the same shop regularly over the last few weeks, i doubt that is the cause.

    As previously explained it is the salt which is causing my problems.  Too much salt causes my gastric problems whereas too less also causes me gastric problems.

    I use the exact same amount of salt 4 grams, weigh the chicken and measure the water.  On those days the chicekn absorbs the salt, it comes out perfect and there are no stomach issues.  On those days the chicken doesnt absorb it, the water ends up tasting too salty and there are stomach problems.  By tasting the chicken and water I can tell that the difference in the amount of salt absorbed is very significant, this being the case I am certain its something about the way I am cooking which is causing the degree of salt water absorbtion.
     
  5. french fries

    french fries

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    Have you considered trying to brine your chicken?
     
  6. ishbel

    ishbel

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    Have you considered not eating chicken prepared in this way?
     
  7. chlorinated

    chlorinated

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    Yes, however somebody on this forum previosuly told me  the idea of brining for a soup is ridiculous.  Even so I tried it and what I found was that when cooking the soup, the salt in the brined chicken comes out and evens itself out in the soup.  I may try this again as I did use a lot of salt on that occasion.

    Having said that brining does sound like it is for roasting, grilling etc not simmering.  Moreover since it has been working on occasion where I haven't brined, this suggests the answer is elsewhere.
     
  8. chlorinated

    chlorinated

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    French Frise, apologise for not quoting you in last post.
    How else do you suggest?  If you are referring to vegetables and so, then yes I have considered and tried however I cannot tolerate any vegetables, stews, roast, grilled etc and these only make me worser.  I know it sounds strange but I have a very severe gastric problem and its progressively getting worser.  Being unable tolerate anything except optimally salted protein soup is a sign of heading towards something serious if I don't solve this.  I know my methods are not normal, but there is not much else I can do.
     
  9. phatch

    phatch Moderator Staff Member

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    You need professional medical help, a consulting dietitian and probably a few other pros too. You're in the UK, you have access to affordable care. Get it.
     
  10. koukouvagia

    koukouvagia

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    A lot of people make broth and soup with absolutely no salt in it.  Then measure exactly how much soup you want in your bowl and put the exact measurement of salt you need in the bowl.  I'm sorry you have health issues but you're trying to walk into the first floor of the house by climbing up through the second floor window.  You're making simple cooking very complicated.  People that have issues with salt do not put salt on their food while it is cooking, they put salt in it or on it when it is on their plate.  Trying to make it into a chemistry problem is a lot of work with no solution.  You are not the first person to have gastric issues, I'm sure all of us here have food sensitivities, allergies, food intollerances, and have health issues related to sodium, sugar, wheat, or fat.  It's simply a question of eat a little bit more of this or a little bit less of it.  More importantly, if you have severe gastric issues as you claim then there must be some prescribed diet from your doctor.  I'm sure your doctor must have said something like "you should be consuming around x amount of sodium per day."  I'm almost certain he didn't say "go home and re-invent food."
     
    Last edited: Nov 11, 2011
  11. chlorinated

    chlorinated

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    I only started posting these queries after having consulted these guys and having tried to figure it all out myself.  Having spoken to a whole team of nutritionists they didn't have any answers, the best they came up with was 'you're gonna have to keep cooking and notice what you are doing different on the days it comes out right'.  Subsequently my doctors best advice is I should learn how to live with my condition whilst my gastroenterologist tells me I am better of seeing a nutririonist.  I even asked my doctor that surely there is a food chemist who would know the answer to my cooking query but she says there is no medical specialist like that to whom she can refer me. 
    I did initially try no salt and later  sprinkling a little at the end however these would both give problems.  As explained I have already tried simplicity and my doctors can't cure shit.

    Since anything and everything gives problems except this optmally salted protein soup, logically I must need to be eating it. I'm obsessed with it since this is the only thing that has a positive affect on my stomach.  If indeed there is a reason why it absorbs properly on one day and not another, then I need to find that out.  As you can see it really is a cooking/food chemistry issue for me.  Thank you guys for trying to help/explain alot of the issue even if it didn't solve the problem end of the day.

    I for one will keep on fighting since the alernative could be ending up with parenteral nutrition and a miserable death.
     
  12. phatch

    phatch Moderator Staff Member

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    have you been tested for allergies/intolerance? What are the results
     
  13. chlorinated

    chlorinated

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    You can be rest assured I have exhausted all of these avenues.  Intolerance tests showed I was pretty much intolerant to everything except animal proteins and some group vegetables.  Following a relapse I even became intolerant to those vegetables.  As such I cannot have stews since they require vegetables and grilled/roast/greasy foods also give problems.

    A soup cooked to the aforementioned result will heal me, i known since when it comes out like that it does indeed start to heal .
     
  14. phatch

    phatch Moderator Staff Member

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    OK. I think you have more issues than protein soup will really cover.  

    Such a limited diet will cause problems on its own. High protien diet tends to cause gall bladder problems and the lack of other nutrients and fiber will contribute to higher risks for colon cancer and more.

    But I can see where you're looking for a short term management plan that works before tackling longer term issues. Are you taking any supplements, multi vitamins, a fiber additive or anything? If so, any you can tolerate taking?
     
  15. petemccracken

    petemccracken

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    I may be mistaken, but this seems to be at odds with many of your previous posts about trying to get more fat into your soups rather than less, yet the above seems to indicate you have problems with high fat foods.

    If high animal protein soups appear to be the easiest for you to consume, why not simmer the animal protein(s) in water until all, or nearly all, of the animal protein is dissolved into the water, then dispose of the now nutrient deficient solids, then it would be a simple matter to adjust the salt level(s) to whatever is satisfactory for your system.

    Though proteins are essential as they supply the amino acids essential for cell growth and development, carbohydrates and some fat is also necessary for the energy that cells need.
     
  16. ishbel

    ishbel

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    I would have thought that with your very specific problems, a number of specialist units in the UK would be glad to try to help - including any consultant you might have already consulted.

    Colour me sceptical.
     
  17. chlorinated

    chlorinated

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    You are right, thats why I need to do start healing fast and get to the point where I can tolerate vegetables so that I can reintroduce them.  Protein is required to rebuild the damaged gut wall and my issue isn't a gallbladder one.  If I don't start healing the natural progression is some high risk illness.  Since I know the soup in question is the only thing that works and is having a healing affect, then surely thats my bodies way of telling me this is what it needs.
    I was but they were of no benefit.  My naturopathic/alternative med doctor told me to have soup with fat in it to heal my gut.  He was right as it was working.  I need to be having the soup and taking supplements alongside it but the latter without the former is of no benefit.  Once again it is the salt issue which is preventing the stomach from recovering.

    I posted this issue on another website and got a really interesting answer: http://cooking.stackexchange.com/qu...-chicken-absorb-more-salt-when-cooking-a-soup

    I won't get my hopes up high but i'll try it tommorow and let you know the outcome.
     
  18. petemccracken

    petemccracken

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  19. phatch

    phatch Moderator Staff Member

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    I'm still thinking you're getting salt water treated chicken in some cases and that's what's leading to your variation in batches of soup. Talk to your grocer about ALL of his sources for chicken and make sure you're always getting the chicken that works the way you need it to.
     
  20. chefedb

    chefedb

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    May I suggest going to a Gastro Doctor or an Internist. Most foods come with a natural salts and sugars built in ,asside from many other chemicals. And don't eat Kosher protein foods.