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Flavor injectors and syringes: What works?


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13 replies to this topic

#1 Baggy

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Posted 15 May 2007 - 06:21 AM

I have been trying to guess what is going to work to fill some tomato jelly cubes with mozzarella (from the new Planet Marx book).

I came across flavour injectors which are used for preparing turkey. I understand that the injectors are quite thick and can have holes along the length of the tube. This would make it too large and too leaky for injecting a 1” cube.

What is used for putting jam in the centre of a doughnut? I’ve come across using a baster (far too large) and a special attachment for a pastry bag (referred to as a doughnut or Bismarck needle).

And of course, HB used to inject his three-times fried ‘chips’ with tomato ketchup using a syringe.

It seems to be impossible to get either a turkey flavour injector or a doughnut needle in the UK. But I can get syringes from an ingredient supplier (where they are sold, presumably, as part of the kit for making elBulli-style apple caviar).

What does experience show to be the best solution for injecting a thicker filling than apple caviar or jam for a doughnut? And what gauge syringe needle should I try?

Apart from turkey and doughnuts, any ideas for new great dishes using injectors?

#2 Carolyn Tillie

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Posted 15 May 2007 - 07:08 AM

The really huge strawberries that are sold for chocolate-dipping have a sizable cavity! My favorite is to inject coffee liqueur before enrobbing it in chocolate, but Grand Marnier or other nifty flavors will work.

A big college trick was to inject watermelons with vodka a few hours before cutting them open...

For savory, I also inject leg-of-lamb with cognac.

#3 hathor

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Posted 15 May 2007 - 08:45 AM

The really huge strawberries that are sold for chocolate-dipping have a sizable cavity! My favorite is to inject coffee liqueur before enrobbing it in chocolate, but Grand Marnier or other nifty flavors will work.

A big college trick was to inject watermelons with vodka a few hours before cutting them open...

For savory, I also inject leg-of-lamb with cognac.

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What happens when you bite into the strawberry? Does it squirt out coffee liqueur, or does the liqueur get absorbed into the strawberry? Just curious, it sounds like a great idea, but I have visions of all sorts of things running down my chin! :laugh:

#4 toweringpine

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Posted 15 May 2007 - 09:27 AM

Filling a strawberry with booze before dipping in chocolate!! What a brilliant idea!! I will have to try this.

I recieved two injectors for Christmas. I am dissappointed with both of them. The metal thread that screws on to the plastic thread makes a poor seal and tends to fall off. The little holes along the metal tube are so small that they get clogged up with any little bits that are in the injection mix. I guess this wouldn't be a problem for injecting thin liquids like liquor but its not much good for thicker stuff like marinade. I haven't given up on the technique yet but I will have to look carefully before buying another injector and probably will have to spend a bunch more money on the next one.

#5 Carolyn Tillie

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Posted 15 May 2007 - 10:00 AM

The really huge strawberries that are sold for chocolate-dipping have a sizable cavity! My favorite is to inject coffee liqueur before enrobbing it in chocolate, but Grand Marnier or other nifty flavors will work.

A big college trick was to inject watermelons with vodka a few hours before cutting them open...

For savory, I also inject leg-of-lamb with cognac.

View Post


What happens when you bite into the strawberry? Does it squirt out coffee liqueur, or does the liqueur get absorbed into the strawberry? Just curious, it sounds like a great idea, but I have visions of all sorts of things running down my chin! :laugh:

View Post


It truly depends on the size of the cavity -- yes, sometimes there is chin-drip and if one plans this well, then there is a loved-one nearby to help lick up the drippings! :wub:

Often, if the strawberry is small enough, then the entire fruit can be put into the mouth the "squirt" is all contained within that first bite.

#6 DTBarton

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Posted 15 May 2007 - 12:20 PM

I inject pork shoulders with apple juice before and during slow smoking.

#7 BryanZ

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Posted 15 May 2007 - 03:17 PM

If you cut off the bottom of a typical flavor injector syringe thing, it makes a great contraption for stuffing squid tubes and doing other "freeform" sausages. You can also inject slow-cooked eggs with maple syrup or what have you for an unexpected surprise. The syringes are also good for getting soups or sauces into tiny serving vessels like egg cups, shot glasses, etc. I've actually never used for injecting marinade in meat but find them incredibly useful for other applications.

#8 veil

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Posted 10 March 2012 - 12:02 PM

Any current thinking on this?--I'm looking for an injector for, say, putting a duxelles filling inside chicken breasts. So, a greater diameter than just the needle that a marinade injector has, but with a long tube to get deep into the pocket. Thanks.

#9 Blues_Cookin

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Posted 10 March 2012 - 12:50 PM

How about this needle on a Gourmet Whip?
Orem, Utah

#10 veil

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Posted 10 March 2012 - 01:18 PM

Thanks, but I don't have a Gourmet Whip (and don't want to spend the $ to get one). I'd be happy with a mechanical plunger type of thing, but so far haven't been able to find one with a big enough diameter (except for the "Amazing Ronco Solid Food Injector").

#11 Ershin

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Posted 16 November 2012 - 10:24 AM

not sure if your still looking into them, or not, but you can get a range of thicker needles in the uk here; http://vetshopni.co....ious-sizes.html, most bbq forums seem to be recommending somewhere around 14g, though because of how short that needle is, 16g might be a good compromise

there luer lock, and therefore should be compatible with marinade injectors on the market, of which the cheapest i can find in the uk is http://www.keengarde...utm_medium=base which is £7.93 shipped

im trying to find the almost perforated needles you can find on the metal cajun injectors, but no luck so far :/

#12 Ashen

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Posted 16 November 2012 - 10:39 PM

this is what I use

http://www.tscstores...-ML-P20908.aspx

along with these 14 gauge needles

http://www.tscstores...3PK-P20881.aspx

there are many other gauge sizes that fit the syringe which can be boiled and comes with replacement o rings for around the bottom luer lock and plunger. I have seen an identical product in a fancied up package at a culinary gadget store sold for over 3 times the price and it didn't come with the replacement o rings and only one needle.
"Why is the rum always gone?"
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#13 gratuitousfoodity

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Posted 27 November 2012 - 09:38 PM

Thanks, I've been looking for a reusable syringe. Here's a US source for what you've linked to:

http://www.valleyvet...92-00b0d0204ae5
http://www.valleyvet...92-00b0d0204ae5

#14 boilsover

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Posted 10 December 2012 - 08:19 PM

I use the inaptly-named Morton "Meat Pump", which resembles a large veterinarian syringe. The needle is rather large-gauge; the tip is "blind", but it is cross-drilled about 1/2 inch behind the tip. This seems to help prevent brine/marinade aneurisms when the needle bottoms out. It seems to work OK, but I wish there were finer-gauge needles as well.

Edited by boilsover, 10 December 2012 - 08:20 PM.