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ARS Home » Southeast Area » Athens, Georgia » U.S. National Poultry Research Center » Quality & Safety Assessment Research » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #333787

Research Project: Assessment and Improvement of Poultry Meat, Egg, and Feed Quality

Location: Quality & Safety Assessment Research

Title: Freezing-thawing and sub-sampling influence the marination performance of chicken breast meat

Author
item Bowker, Brian
item Zhuang, Hong

Submitted to: Poultry Science
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 4/28/2017
Publication Date: 6/21/2017
Citation: Bowker, B.C., Zhuang, H. 2017. Freezing-thawing and sub-sampling influence the marination performance of chicken breast meat. Poultry Science. 96(9):3482-3488.

Interpretive Summary: Vacuum-tumbling marination is commonly used to enhance the tenderness, juiciness, flavor, and yield of broiler breast meat. Research on the vacuum-tumbling marination of broiler breast meat is often conducted on sub-samples taken from different locations within the breast meat or on samples that have been previously frozen and thawed. This study demonstrated that the marination absorption, cook loss, and final product yield of vacuum-tumble marinated broiler breast fillets are influenced by muscle sub-sampling and freezing-thawing. These data suggest that although breast fillets can be frozen-thawed prior to marination and sub-samples from the muscle can be utilized for research purposes, the interpretation and comparison of subsequently collected data on the marination and cooking characteristics of broiler breast fillets should account for these variations in sample handling.

Technical Abstract: Vacuum-tumbling marination is often used to improve the yield and quality of whole or portioned boneless broiler breast fillets. The relationship between the marination performance of whole Pectoralis major muscles and breast fillet sub-samples is not well understood. The objective of this study was to determine the effects of sub-sampling and freezing-thawing on the marination performance and cook loss of broiler breast fillets. Paired right and left broiler breasts were marinated as whole fillets or sub-samples from the cranial and mid-caudal portions of the fillets. Samples were marinated at 24 h postmortem (fresh) or stored at -20°C for 7 days and then thawed prior to sampling and marination (frozen-thawed). Samples were vacuum-tumbled (559 mm Hg, 8 rpm, 4°C) in 20% wt/wt brine (5% NaCl, 3% STP). Samples were weighed pre-marination, during marination (15, 30, and 45 min), and 24 h post-marination. Samples were then cooked to 75°C in a combi-steam oven for determination of cook loss. Marinade uptake was greater (P<0.0001) for caudal sub-samples than intact fillets or cranial sub-samples after 15 min of marination. After 30 min, marinade uptake was greater (P<0.05) for caudal sub-samples and intact fillets than cranial sub-samples. After 45 min, marinade uptake for fresh samples was greatest in intact fillets, intermediate for caudal sub-samples, and least in cranial sub-samples. For frozen-thawed samples, marinade uptake at 45 min was greater (P<0.0001) for caudal sub-samples and intact fillets than cranial sub-samples. For sub-samples, marinade uptake at 30 min was greater (P<0.05) in frozen-thawed versus fresh fillets. Differences in marinade retention due to treatment (fresh versus frozen-thawed) or sampling (intact versus sub-sample) were not observed. Cook loss was similar between fresh and frozen-thawed samples but was greater (P<0.0001) in sub-samples compared to intact fillets. Correlations between intact fillet and cranial sub-sample marinade uptakes were greater in fresh (r = 0.64-0.78) than frozen-thawed samples (r = 0.39-0.59). Correlations between intact fillet and caudal sub-sample marinade uptakes were greater in frozen-thawed (r = 0.79-0.82) than fresh samples (r = 0.46-0.63). Data suggest that the relationships between the marination performance of whole breast fillets and fillet sub-samples are dependent upon prior sample handling and intra-fillet sampling location.