Utilization of Twin Screw Cold Extrusion to Manufacture Restructured Chops from Lower-Valued Pork

University of Nebraska 1995 Swine Day Report. Restructured meat products are commonly manufactured by using lower-valued meat trimmings reduced in size by comminution (flaking, chunking, grinding, chopping or slicing). The comminuted meat mixture is mixed with salt and water to extract salt-soluble proteins. These extracted proteins are critical to produce a glue which binds muscle pieces together. These muscle pieces may then be reformed to produce a meat log of specific form or shape. The log is then cut into steaks or chops which, when cooked, are similar in appearance and texture to their intact muscle counterparts. Two concerns must be addressed in the manufacture of restructured meat products: texture, and the removal and degradation of connective tissue. Lower-valued meat trimmings used in restructuring tend to contain more connective tissue which may affect product texture. Mechanical desinewing is used to remove connective tissue from boneless meat trimmings. Reducing the connective tissue in trimmings increases their value for use in various restructured meat products. The method of comminution also affects the final product texture, which usually is somewhere between that of ground (hamburger) and an intact muscle (steak or chop) meat product. Recently, twin screw cold extrusion has been used as a processing technology to produce restructured meat products. In this process, a comminuted meat mixture is forced to flow through an enclosed twin-screw extruding horn to form extruded ropes of a specific shape and size. These ropes can be pressed together to form meat logs which then can be cleaved into restructured steaks or chops. This process is believed to partially realign muscle fibers and modify the texture of meat products. This study sought to evaluate various mixing times and extrusion speeds on the sensory and textural attributes of cold extruded restructured pork chops.