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Tenderizing

Confusion over needle tenderizers - thoughts?

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Confusion over needle tenderizers - thoughts?

tastyjon | Nov 22, 2008 12:16 AM

I've noticed some notable chefs giving a lot of praise for the needle tenderizers - those hand held devices full of sharp pins.

On the one hand, I can see it being a good device to tenderize flat strips of meat by basically drilling scores of holes in the structure.

On the other hand, it seems to run counter to the basic rules of cooking meats... not poking, stabbing, messing with the juices.

And what if you have time to use food-based tenderizing techniques?

Are there any guiding rules as to when/how you'd employ such a technique versus marinades, etc? I can see it being used for veal scallops, for example, but not steak. Hence the confusion.

Thanks!

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