Why the Texture of the Chicken You've Been Getting Might Be Off

August 28, 2016

Earlier this week on the Hotline, JessicaHansen shared a troubling phenomenon: the texture of some of the chicken breasts she’s been getting has been a little odd. As she describes it, “When I cut into the chicken I feel resistance (like you would when butchering raw chicken rather than cutting/carving cooked chicken) and there is a strange almost squeaky mouthfeel​.”

SMSF jumped into the discussion to share that it seemed like the issue could be “woody breast,” a muscle abnormality in chicken meat that the National Chicken Council says “causes breast muscle to be hard to the touch, often pale in color with poor quality texture.” The exact cause is not known, though some researchers say “several decades of breeding in favor of heavier, faster-growing birds could be a factor.”

Funky textures are never fun, but figuring out what might be causing it can provide a little peace of mind. That smart insight was just one of the many reasons why longtime​ Food52er SMSF received this month’s Hotline MVP title. She also...

“From your description, it sounds like the water has damaged the finish on the wood (thus the white color), though not the wood itself. Since different finishes have their own methods of care, you might be better off consulting with whoever finished your floors. Or if you don't know that information, try a flooring care source.”

  • Reminded us that there’s not [one perfect knife] that will work for everyone:

“It's important to consider how comfortable the user will be with any particular knife—does the handle feel 'right' in his or her hand, is the balance comfortable, etc.!”

Congratulations to SMSF and thanks to everyone who participates over on the Hotline—the community wouldn’t be the same without you.

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New here? To thank our members for their dedication to helping out their fellow cooks, every month we’ll choose a Food52er whose activity on the Hotline has caught our eye, and treat him or her to a $25 gift certificate to our Shop. Want to boost your kitchen karma? We’re looking for enthusiastic participation throughout the month that is helpful, thoughtful, and considerate.

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See what other Food52 readers are saying.

  • JessicaHansen
  • Nancy
  • PHIL
  • SMSF
Food52 (we cook 52 weeks a year, get it?) is a food and home brand, here to help you eat thoughtfully and live joyfully.


JessicaHansen August 29, 2016
thanks SMSF, I really appreciated your answer to my question this month!
SMSF August 29, 2016
Your question triggered my memory of the article I referenced. Happy to have helped out!
Nancy August 28, 2016
Congrats SMSF! I'll look for your postings...
SMSF August 29, 2016
thanks, Nancy!
PHIL August 28, 2016
Good job SMSF
SMSF August 29, 2016
I'm in great MVP company, PHIL : )