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Denatured muscle fiber

Muscle fiber Perimysium fibers

Denatured perimysium and epimysium

Denatured muscle fiber

Denatured perimysium and epimysium

Figure 7. Diagrammatic representation of the changes in the muscle fibers and connective tissue during cooking in a cross section of muscle related to the change in shear value. The lower the shear values, the more tender the meat. The shear force units in this figure are on a different scale and are approximately four times those in other figures. The cooking temperatures for meat are very rare (55°C), rare (60°C), medium rare (65°C), medium (70°C), medium well done (75°C), well done (80°C) and very well done (85°C). Source: Ref. 2, used with permission.

Figure 7. Diagrammatic representation of the changes in the muscle fibers and connective tissue during cooking in a cross section of muscle related to the change in shear value. The lower the shear values, the more tender the meat. The shear force units in this figure are on a different scale and are approximately four times those in other figures. The cooking temperatures for meat are very rare (55°C), rare (60°C), medium rare (65°C), medium (70°C), medium well done (75°C), well done (80°C) and very well done (85°C). Source: Ref. 2, used with permission.

are virtually unaffected by animal age if cooked to a comparatively rare state. The amount of subcutaneous fat appears to affect tenderness mainly by reducing the chilling rate, and fat within the muscle (ie, marbling) is a poor predictor of tenderness and palatability once there is a minimum amount. It requires large increases in marbling to produce detectable changes in palatability (78,79). Tenderness increases (ie, shear force reduction) and palatability improvement of the cooked meat with excessive marbling are likely because there is less meat, but there is often consumer resistance if they see the meat raw first!

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