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Old 04-16-2005, 09:43 PM   #1
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What causes this? And is it safe?

I had bought a package of boneless chicken breasts the other day, from Tyson, and had noticed something, and was wondering what caused it...

Along the one side of the meat (the outer side) were numerous small holes, a little bit thicker than a pin... There were about 20 holes or so in each piece... it almost looked like someone had taken a thin nail and poked the piece of meat multiple times... I was wondering what it was that causes this, if it's part of processing that I've just never noticed before, or from something else...

My girlfriend also was disconcerted by them and wondered if there were any safety issues that could be related to it?

Can anyone shed some light on this?

Thanks

LoveToCookinNC

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Old 04-16-2005, 10:26 PM   #2
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Does the packaging mention anything about being injected with either a marinate or a saline solution? Was it mechanically tenderized (although that usually looks like a cube steak)?

Most importantly, did you inspect the packaging to see if the plastic was punctured as well?
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Old 04-16-2005, 10:53 PM   #3
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I cook with chicken quite a bit and I've never seen anything like what you described, CookinNC. I agree with Allen, check it out thoroughly. If you have any concerns, toss it.
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Old 04-16-2005, 11:09 PM   #4
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i know alot of places are injecting meats to make them nore flavorful, even to make them more tender. but just like allen said inspect the plastic wrapper and if that appears to have been pierced take the meat back to the store.
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Old 04-16-2005, 11:11 PM   #5
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I'd take it back to the store and have the meat department either refund your money or else explain what those little holes are. I'd not eat it until either I knew it was harmless or at least what caused them.


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Old 04-16-2005, 11:50 PM   #6
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I too would wonder if there was a flavor injection as Allen says, although injections of flavor would concentrate more towards the center of meat as opposed to the outside. And again, agreeing with Allen on the packaging, did you take a look at it? PLUS, take a good smell, just like fish "a nose knows" if it don't smell right....then it ain't right. Aside from that I think it was caused by the removal of the pin feathers from the bird itself.
I have seen Tyson chicken at my local markets and tend to steer away from it, to me, it doesn't look as good as Purdue. But that's just me.
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Old 04-17-2005, 05:10 AM   #7
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I personally think you got a batch of chicken breasts that were abducted by aliens and experimented on, then returned to the store.
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Old 04-17-2005, 08:23 AM   #8
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The package was intact when I bought it, I looked over the package for any relevant information, and noticed a paragraph on the back that said:

"Individually Frozen

Tyson Boneless Skinless Chicken Breasts are ready to Cook, no thawing required! Each portion is broth enhanced for tenderness and individually frozen. ...."

A friend of mine mentioned that she was pretty sure that it was part of the freezing process.


On an unrelated note, this is my first time posting in this forum, love the quick responses, thanks everyone


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Old 04-17-2005, 10:22 AM   #9
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Broth enhanced.......there is your answer. Not part of the freezing process, at least in my opinion. No thawing??? I would disagree with that, If you put it into an oven [or whatever] frozen you would add to your cooking time a great deal. Always defrost in the fridge.
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Old 04-17-2005, 03:23 PM   #10
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Yep, I agree with Topaz ... the holes you see are from the injector needles used when broth was pumped into the meat to "enhance" it.

I, too, would thaw them first and then adjust my cooking time accordingly.
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Old 04-17-2005, 07:33 PM   #11
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Right.


The package will tell you if it'sw been injected.

I always try to stay away from that stuff.
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Old 04-17-2005, 10:34 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LoveToCookinNC
Each portion is broth enhanced
Broth enhanced translates to, "This way, we can charge you chicken breast prices for chicken broth!".
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Old 04-17-2005, 11:13 PM   #13
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Howdy neighbor! What part of NC are you located?
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Old 04-18-2005, 02:00 PM   #14
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We had a discussion about injecting chicken a few weeks ago re: wok cooking. From what I gather above, the "Broth enhancement" would include adding some liquid back into the center of the chicken. Yes?
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Old 04-18-2005, 02:49 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jpinmaryland
We had a discussion about injecting chicken a few weeks ago re: wok cooking. From what I gather above, the "Broth enhancement" would include adding some liquid back into the center of the chicken. Yes?
Yes that is correct. Broth is actually injected into the muscle. You can do the same thing yourself at home (or just brine your chicken). Instead of paying extra for the store to do it.
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Old 04-18-2005, 05:09 PM   #16
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so this could be a source of too much moisture showing up in my wok when I stir fry chicken. Yes?
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Old 04-18-2005, 05:12 PM   #17
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could very well be
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Old 04-18-2005, 05:14 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jpinmaryland
so this could be a source of too much moisture showing up in my wok when I stir fry chicken. Yes?
That could be a possibility, but probably not. More likely your wok is not hot enough and/or you are overcrowding the wok and thus lowering the temp of the pan. The key to stir fry is to use a very hot pan and wok in small batches.
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Old 04-18-2005, 06:14 PM   #19
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Most chicken isnt injected, so I suspect GB is right about the chix throwing off moisture.


Check the package carefully to make sure it isnt.
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Old 04-18-2005, 06:53 PM   #20
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I buy the fresh, individually packaged chicken breasts and have never seen puncture holes in any of them. I would return the whole package to the market and call the holes to the attention of the meat department manager. Perhaps he could explain it.
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