Where’s the syringe?

Last week I ate at a restaurant called Momo that’s in my guide and has changed owners, so needed updating. It has stayed the same in look and the menu is also unchanged, upon enquiring, it turns out that the chef has stayed on.

As a Belgian toned place, steak and frites appears on the menu and a number of tables ordered it – as did I. Never mind that the specifically skinny nature of a frite was unknown to the establishment (more importantly the fries weren’t great), it was the nature of the slab of unidentified protein on my plate that was the most disconcerting.

Uniform in shape, a block with a strip of fat, this “220g sirloin” had a slightly scorched, ruddy brown look with no griddle marks. In texture it was spongy, and though very tender, it didn’t have any discernable meat fibre. It tasted a little like kassler, with hints of chemical smoke. It was clearly awful, our dogs had to be cajoled to eat the bulk of it.

Any help? My guess is that this is bulk imported beef that has been chemically tenderised and water injected, probably packaged to perfect grammage.

4 Replies to “Where’s the syringe?”

  1. mmm….sounds like the kind of establishment that would also be serving “Bird Flu” laced turkey from Suffolk too!

    It always amazes me how people always look for ways to cut corners….

  2. “Adding water to the meat dilutes the salt, making it palatable, and enables the processors not only to escape being taxed, but also to sell water for huge profits. In some cases, as much as 40% of the meat’s weight is added water.”

    From the above link… buy from a reputable butcher, preferably your (vetted) neighbourhood butcher, seems to be one safeguard.

    Again here, as with wine, as a consumer, tell me what the hell is going on, then let me decide if the lower price fits with my sense of propriety.

  3. Yip, its been a gripe of mine for a while now, thanks for the link!

    You can really tell the difference between true free range (and even here you need to be cautious and skeptical) and a battery fed chicken.

    In colour a little more yellow, in shape – the legs and tendons seem to be longer and in taste just a whole lot more flavorsome.

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