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Old 03-30-2005, 03:58 PM   #1
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Stirfried Chicken oozing water, help please?

The discussion about mongolian beef prompted me to bring this up. Do you ever get like boneless breast from the supermarket and when you stir fry it, it starts to release a ton of water? which of course stops the stir fry process and will really mess up the meat if you leave the water in there. Taking the chicken out and wiping out the water helps, but the chicken will often continue to exude more water after you place it back in...

It seems to me that these supermarkets somehow freeze the chicken from the inside so that while the chicken is soft and pliable on the outside it still has frozen water on the inside. Is that what is going on?

any work arounds this problem? more an annoyance than anything.

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Old 03-30-2005, 04:17 PM   #2
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I have had the same trouble. I now let my chicken thaw out completely before stir frying, and I have been known to squeeze it before slicing.

If you find a solution here I would like to hear it too.
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Old 03-30-2005, 04:21 PM   #3
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JP, or more likely it was

1. flash frozen
2 frozen when the store got it and they let it thaw once in the meat case.
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Old 03-30-2005, 04:28 PM   #4
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yes I think that is what is happening (flash frozen). it seems that more and more stores are doing this.

Alix: how long do you defrost it to get out all the water? a day?
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Old 03-30-2005, 04:29 PM   #5
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I'm wondering if it might have been injected with some sort of saline solution type thing, to enhance flavor, etc. Would that cause excess water when cooking then?
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Old 03-30-2005, 04:36 PM   #6
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see thats sort of what I was thinking, that it was frozen from inside. I asked the guy at the meat dept about this but he denied it. I probably shoudl ask around a bit more.
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Old 03-30-2005, 04:38 PM   #7
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Sometimes, when you put too much meat into a pan at one time, the pan cools down and can't sear the meat properly.

When that happens, the juices in the meat will be squeezed out by the contracting muscle fibers and appear in the pan. Then, you have to get rid of the water before you can brown the meat.

Consider sauteing the meat in smaller batches, in a very hot pan, to help with this problem.
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Old 03-30-2005, 05:31 PM   #8
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As usual, when Andy M speaks, the cooking world should listen. He nailed it. Use a very hot, very heavy pan, and reduce the pan contents.

A similar discussion took place some time ago. Those who worked professionally with oriental food, who were on the site, said that normally, the comercial wok is heated until the metal is near glowing for all stir-fries. Keep the pan hot, both for the meats and veggies.

I had the chance to travel to many places in the orient while in the U.S. Navy. In Hong Kong, the street vendors used a large blow-torch to keep the woks extremely hot. From the time they threw the meat and veggies into it, until the time it was cooked, was a matter of minutes, literally. And it was great stuff.

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Old 03-30-2005, 06:22 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jpinmaryland
yes I think that is what is happening (flash frozen). it seems that more and more stores are doing this.

Alix: how long do you defrost it to get out all the water? a day?
Usually not all day. A few hours will do. Sometimes I start the defrosting in the microwave and it goes quickly after that.
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Old 03-30-2005, 10:50 PM   #10
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I have to agree with Alton Brown he he he, I mean Andy M. Hes so right! To much chicken will cause more water. Or should i say... I second what Andy M. said.
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