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eugenep

does braising in msg filled liquid pull flavor out or put flavor in?

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hello hello. 

 

When you braise meat with super salty water the salty water will likely enter the meat until there is some kind of equilibrium that's established between the less salt content of the meat and the salty content of water (based on "science?"). 

 

When you braise meat in water, a lot of flavor from the meat will escape into the liquid turning it into a stock with flavorless meat at the end of a long cooking period. 

 

Some braises are trying to cook the meat without pulling out all the flavor from it - like pot roast etc. 

 

Which makes sense because you want to eat the meat as the main course. 

 

Some recipes call for heavy wine/herbs/msg in the braising liquid. 

 

Is the thought here that flavor from the msg/wine/herbs will enter the meat rather than pull it out? 

 

I mean...is there a technique where I can braise with a liquid/water without pulling out the fla-va? 

 

And does braising liquid with a lot of flavor actually put flavor into the meat (like how salt will go inside the meat in a brine)? 

 

I'm always afraid to braise with too much liquid or water just because I think the liquid will pull out all the flavor in my meat. 

 

thanks amigos/amigas 

 


Edited by eugenep I wasn't writing clearly (log)

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I would focus on a flavorful braising liquid. Not so much the salt content, but, say, red wine for beef, or apple cider for pork. Lots of herbal elements. I swear by thyme and sage when I braise most anything, along with the typical onion and garlic. 

 

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Don't ask. Eat it.

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FWIW,

I've heard Thomas Keller say that things like salt, acid, and MSG, enhance flavor―whereas pepper, other spices and herbs add flavor.

For 'better' braises you may wish to try this:

McGee Braises and Stews.PNG

Source: On Food and Cooking: The Science and Lore of the Kitchen By Harold McGee, p. 163


Edited by DiggingDogFarm (log)
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~Martin :)

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The best thing about a vegetable garden is all the meat you can hunt and trap out of it! 

 

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My first post on eGullet was asking about braising.  Interesting that in his new book, Secrets of the Butcher, Arthur Le Caisne calls for an oven and hermetically sealing the braising pot with dough.  The meat in this method sits above the braising liquid.

 

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My sense of braising is that the liquid flavors t he meat and the meat flavors the liquid and the product is more than the sum of its parts.

 

 

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glutamic acid isn’t real big, certainly smaller than a triglyceride in oil. And unlike triglyceride it’s water soluble .  So it might get into meat.  

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7 hours ago, JoNorvelleWalker said:

 Interesting that in his new book, Secrets of the Butcher, Arthur Le Caisne calls for an oven and hermetically sealing the braising pot with dough.  The meat in this method sits above the braising liquid.

 

 

That is curious.  A proper braise is a mixture of wet and dry heat: an item in an uncovered pot in an oven that is half-way covered with liquid.  The dry heat allows for caramelization and evaporation and rotating the item adds caramelization to the liquid (deglazing it) and repeats anew.  The continued caramelization and reduction is what enriches/concentrates the liquid (eventually the sauce).  An hermetically sealed pot steams with no reduction and the temperature continues to increase, like impromptu pressure cooker without the release.

Adding less liquid will invariable keep the meat above the braising liquid.

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1 hour ago, Baron d'Apcher said:

 

That is curious.  A proper braise is a mixture of wet and dry heat: an item in an uncovered pot in an oven that is half-way covered with liquid.  The dry heat allows for caramelization and evaporation and rotating the item adds caramelization to the liquid (deglazing it) and repeats anew.  The continued caramelization and reduction is what enriches/concentrates the liquid (eventually the sauce).  An hermetically sealed pot steams with no reduction and the temperature continues to increase, like impromptu pressure cooker without the release.

Adding less liquid will invariable keep the meat above the braising liquid.

 

Proper braising is still an arcane mystery to me.  Until I achieve perfection, I keep an open mind.  Le Caisne describes the modern braising technique of liquid half covering the meat as "Not Great".  Possibly in translation nuances from the original French text have been lost or mislaid.

 

But I doubt it.  No reduction is necessary because of very little liquid.

 

@DiggingDogFarm quotes Harold McGee.  Le Caisne acknowledges assistance from Herve This.

 

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Le Caisne's method seems a bit 'one-directional' for my liking- just like Jo, I haven't mastered braising, but in his method seems liked meat is steamed, and its juices leaching out into the braising liquid. The way I see it, in La Caisne method should produce less flavourful meat (water in - flavourful juices out), with few spoonfuls of exquisite sauce. IMHO, I'd be willing to settle for more ballance of conventional 'half submerged meat' method wherein meat and liquid interchange flavours (and more liquid, which can be reduced in the final stages*)...

 

I've always fancied luting (sealing) the lid with dough, as Le Caisne suggests, but am not entirely sure it's worth the trouble with 'modern' pots, if one uses reasonably decent one- I've braised oxtails on stove top for hours in IKEA enamelled dutch oven (which one would be hard pressed to call 'state of the art' or 'top of the line') with no perceptible loss of liquid with just the lid on the pot.

 

* actually, I leave my braising liquid quite thin, to facilitate reheating, and reduce to desired consistency only when the meat is reheatred properly/thoroughly

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