1 hour ago, boilsover said:
This is a useful article, very well thought out. The concept makes complete sense that smaller molecules may penetrate the meat further than larger ones. Marinades aren't really atomically monolithic, after all. And of course it makes sense that salt may penetrate the furthest, by virtue of the different processes by which it penetrates. But it obviously does not all remain on the surface. Incidentally, the article also points up a flaw in using dye penetration as "proof" that meat is impermeable--the molecule size factor applies to the dyes as well.
If you'd like to read more about how dyes with different molecular sizes differentially penetrate meat, Genuine Ideas has a good blog post about it. He's also got some similar posts about nitrate penetration for cured meats, and a couple nice articles on brining. It's all worth a read.
EDIT: As it turns out, Greg Blonder (who runs Genuine Ideas) is the resident science adviser at Amazing Ribs. I suspected his involvement when I saw the dyes come out...