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lime juice as a tenderizer??

post #1 of 13
Thread Starter 
Does lime juice tenderize meat? I tried a recipe with chicken ,lime juice ,olive oil, and rosemary. The chicken was so juicy and tender, wondering if it was the lime juice, or the olive oil?? :confused:
Joette
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post #2 of 13
Absolutely, especially in a marinade.
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post #3 of 13
Thread Starter 
I didnt know this..that explains that. Probably couldnt use it for shrimp or fish?
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post #4 of 13
It's not a true tenderizer in the manner of papain or bromelaine.

It's a fairly strong acid so it's effect is more in denaturing or "cooking" In so doing, it can make meat mushy if used for too long. That's not usually the kind of tender cooks want.

Phil
post #5 of 13
Thread Starter 
I didnt marinade the chicken with it..I squeezed a lime over it right before baking. I would think it would break down the meat fibers if left on too long.
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post #6 of 13
The idea that marinades tenderize meat is a quasi-myth. "Quasi" because the acid in the marinade will only penetrate a fraction of an inch into the surface of the meat and "cook" it, by denaturing the protein as Phatch explained.

But it will do little to truly make the meat tender to the center. Considering that you sprinkled the lime juice on just before cooking, it had little to no effect on the tenderness of your chicken.

The tenderness of your chicken could be due to:

1) The age of the chicken
2) How the bird was raised
3) Whether the meat was on the bone or not
4) What part of the bird the meat came from
5) The cooking method you employed
6) And the temperature you cooked it to

Mark
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post #7 of 13
Joette, Julia Child's recipe for roasted chicken included a liberal sprinkle of lemon juice and the squeezed lemon placed in the cavity. I've also seen thin slices of lemon slipped between the skin and flesh before baking. Unless you over-marinate in citrus juice, you don't risk mushy meat.

Once I marinated a flank steak in a southwestern flavored marinade that included chilis and lime, among other flavors. I left it in the fridge for 6 hours. It was over-tenderized and, and Phil noted, mushy in texture. Now I try to stick to a limit of 2-3 hours for whole larger cuts, 1 hour for kabob chunks or strips, depending on how much citrus I use.
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post #8 of 13
Absolutely. One of my favourirte ways to prepare shrimp is to marinate it for about 1/2 an hour in lime juice, minced garlic and black pepper. Wrap the shrimp in thin slices of pancetta, slip them on a skewer and grill them till the bacon is crisp.

Seafood needs much less marinating time than other meats and for shrimp, no more than 1/2 an hour.

Jock
post #9 of 13
I totally love Limes WAY more than Lemons, but if you are going to marinate Fish or Shrimp in Lime, you may as well just make Ceviche.
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post #10 of 13
Thread Starter 
I have another one I fix..with bacon..get the large shrimp, butterfly them , make a stuffing out of bread crumbs,egg, onions salt and pepper, stuff the shrimp with the stuffing mixture..then wrap in bacon, place on baking sheet and bake until the bacon is golden brown. I'll try to find the original recipe and post it..Jock please send me the recipe for the shrimp with pancetta!!!
tks joette :D
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post #11 of 13
Thread Starter 
This is the original recipe
1 tablespoon butter
3 green onions, finely chopped
1/2 cup finely chopped green bell pepper
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
4 1/2 teaspoons heavy cream
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
Dash cayenne pepper
1/2 cup saltine cracker crumbs
1/4 cup mayonnaise
1 egg
2 tablespoons fresh parsley leaves
1/2 lemon, juiced
1 pound crabmeat, picked over
1 pound extra-large or jumbo shrimp (about 24 shrimp), peeled, deveined, tails on
12 slices bacon, halved crosswise


Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
Melt butter in a skillet over medium heat and cook green onions, green pepper and garlic powder until peppers are limp. Place in mixing bowl and add cream, mustard and cayenne pepper to sauteed vegetables, mix well.

Add cracker crumbs, mayonnaise, egg, parsley and lemon juice; mix well. Gently fold in crabmeat. Form into small patties sized to stuff into shrimp; set aside.

Split shrimp down the bottom center to tail, being careful not to cut through. Stuff each shrimp with crabmeat mixture. Wrap shrimp in bacon and secure with a toothpick. Place on a baking pan and cook at 350 degrees until bacon is crisp and shrimp are pink, about 15 to 20 minutes.
I forgot it has crabmeat also..
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post #12 of 13
There really isn't a recipe for this. Quantities are appropriate to the number and size of shrimp you use and your personal taste.

Basically, mix lime juice, minced garlic and black pepper in a bowl or Ziplok bag and add the shelled and deveined shrimp (tails left on). After 1/2 hour in the fridge, shake off the bits of garlic and wrap the shrimp in pancetta. Skewer the shrimp individually with toothpicks or gang them on a skewer. If you have your BBQ grill fired up, grill them a couple of minutes on each side. otherwise do them on the stove top on a hot griddle.

Jock
post #13 of 13
Thread Starter 
Tks...sounds good I'll try it.
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