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Chicken, Buttermilk


dcarch
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I see once in a while recipes using buttermilk for chickens.

I decided to do a little test.

I got a whole chicken, boned it, and took out two pieces of breast meat with skin removed. One piece was marinated in buttermilk for 24 hours, and the other nothing.

In separate bags, at the same time both were in the sous vide cooker for 90 minutes set at 150 F.

At the end of 90 minutes, both were quick seared on a cast iron skillet, buttermilk was washed off. No seasonings were used, just salt and pepper.

Taste test:

Mouth feel - Both were very tender, and juicy, pretty much identical, couldn't detect any difference.

Flavor - cooked at 150F, both were delicious with just salt and pepper, pretty much identical. I was unable to tell the difference between the two.

Chicken at $0.99 a lb and buttermilk at $2.95 a quart, I don't think I will bother with using the buttermilk for my cooking.

May be buttermilk will be good if you cook chciken to 212F. I am not about to do that test.

However, as with any experiment, nothing is confirmed until the same results are duplicated by others.

dcarch

Chickenbuttermilk3_zpsdf28fb4a.jpg

chickenbuttermilk2_zps2ce07bf1.jpg

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Butermilk is usually used in processes where an acid is wanted to acitvate a leavening agent. Pancakes are a good example.

Some use self rising flour or flour with a leavening agent for frying chicken, hence the use of buttermilk.

I believe as my tests of using buttermilk as a marinade have demonstrated to me, that it really as no effect on the chicken itself.

Buttermilk also affects the color of the fried chicken.

http://www.seriouseats.com/2010/06/what-is-the-difference-between-baking-powder-and-baking-soda-in-pancakes.html

.-Dick

Edited by budrichard (log)
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I am reminded of the Chicken Tikka Masala episode of Heston Blumenthal's In Search of Perfection. He marinated chicken in yogurt and spices, and a control with just a spice rub. He then ran an MRI scan and found that the yogurt helped the spices penetrate the meat much further than the spices alone were able to move. I believe that buttermilk may be similar enough to have the same effect. But, you need to add a flavoring agent to it see the effect.

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I was under the impression that buttermilk helps keep chicken moist and tender in situations like grilling, where chicken ordinarily would dry out. Cooking chicken sous vide locks the moisture in to begin with, eliminating the need for a buttermilk marinade...

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Meat dries out when it is cooked at too high of a temperature. Grilling doesn't ordinarily dry any meat out unless one's grill happens to ordinarily be at an incorrect temperature. Sous vide doesn't keep chicken moist because the bag is sealing things in. Sous vide CAN keep chicken moist IF the correct temperature is used. But, then again, any technique can keep meat moist as long as the temperature is regulated and correct. You can have tough dry chicken in a soup, if it's cooked at the wrong temperature.

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of interest to me: do you think 150 is better than 140 for CkBr? then again I do 145 for 3 hrs, not 90 min.

I used to cook chicken breast at 140F (60C), then I went down to 133F (56C) and found it much much better. Everyone I've served it to agrees it's the most tender breast they've ever tried. About one hour for temperature-to-core or about 3 hours for pasteurization.

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in thinking about this: in the past I used yogurt to tenderize various cuts, as they do in Greece et.al. I used lots of stuff, but boned out turkey thighs, 24 - 48 with yogurt then dried and season and Hot grilled were as tender as juicy as anything Ive ever made.

in the Pre SV days.

so something has to be going on.

still bummed out on not yet making the 'Perfect' 3 start stuffed CkBr.

thanks E.B. for your thoughts. but in Espania I bet the CkBr dont taste like the $1.77 I get. Im not complaining, I add the flavor later.

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