McRib Sandwiches may look like ribs, but they can be shaped to look like anything
If you’ve been paying attention to the news this week, you’ve probably heard the controversy about the 70 ingredients in McDonald’s McRib Sandwich, including “a flour-bleaching agent used to make the soles of shoes, and foamed plastics, like gym mats.” It should be noted that rumors are Subway Sandwiches has been accused of using the same chemical in their bread.
From NPR Radio’s food blog, The Salt –
“The pork producers wanted to see more pork on the menu, and they were targeting McDonald’s,” Mandigo said.
Mandigo went to work in the lab and came up with a new take on an old-fashioned technology: sausage-making. Instead of just stuffing pork meat inside a casing, Mandigo used salt to extract proteins from the muscle. Those proteins become an emulsifier “to hold all the little pieces of meat together,” he says.
“All we did was reuse the technology that had been around for hundreds of years and emphasize that we could shape products to shapes people wanted,” he says.
And here is where our story takes an interesting twist: Seems the McRib was not born in the shape of its current pork patty. The original concoction Mandigo made was formed as a faux pork chop.
McChop? Maybe not.
“[McDonald’s] chose the shape,” Mandigo said. “They wanted it to look like the boneless part of a backrib.”
You’ve had two stabs at this and still managed to not mention the pork parts are largely tripe, pig heart and scalded stomach rather than other somewhat more popular parts.
I’m OK with all pig bits but I can see where some more fully informed people might actually prefer eating a Mcyoga mat.
Interesting (maybe). Your source?
Food Dude says
You can start with this link from Time Magazine, but if you check google, you’ll find sources all over the web.
Morris – Those are some of the best parts if you are talking flavor per ounce!
Personally, I find the extreme processing unappetizing, no matter what vague part of the pig gets used.
I don’t find the mcrib terribly tasty… but i love it in concept. It’s a nostalgic throwback to the pro-science mindset of the 80’s (which I always imagine as a man, in a lab-coat and goggles, triumphantly screaming “SCIENCE!” while electricity buzzes from a giant tesla coil behind him).
Also i think you could make a reasonable argument that mcdonald’s chicken nuggets and mcrib sandwiches are the spiritual precursors to modern molecular gastronomy. Which is pretty neat :)
Just an hour after reading your post here, a friend sent me this interesting link, discussing McDonalds more as a commodities market than a restaurant: http://www.theawl.com/2011/11/a-conspiracy-of-hogs-the-mcrib-as-arbitrage