Na Na pinches her pennies (aka frugal living)

Shh… don't tell anyone I'm poor. They all think I'm living frugal and green just like everyone these days. This is a blog about a senior citizen living a frugal life, on a fixed income, in a low income food desert, and passing along knowledge from lessons learned. Some she learned from her Grandma Mama many years ago and some learned only a few days ago.

What are we eating?

It seems that nearly everyone is writing about or talking about the snow storm in the mid-west and along the east coast.  Maybe you are like me and a bit tired of snow stories?  I thought I’d write about something different so you can get a break from all those snow stories.

Do you remember the big public uproar a couple of years back about pink slime being used without our knowledge?  Did you know its back?  Yes, its being used again now that people have forgotten about it.  Out of sight, out of mind.

So, have you heard about meat glue?  Do you know what it is?  Did you know that most restraunts use it?  They can take a few cents worth of scrap cuts and form it into a filet mignon. The customers don’t know its being done. Thats a hugh profit margin.

If you don’t know about meat glue then do an internet search for transglutaminase or meat glue and you’ll get thousands of sites to read.  Its also called Activa.  Not to be confused with the yogurt.

Meat glue is not only being used with beef, chicken, and pork but its also being used for fish, tofu, and in most deli meats as well. Its used in dairy products like cheese, yogurt, and eggs to make them creamy. All without our knowledge.  We are all eating it and don’t know it.

Have a look at this jowl bacon from my freezer.  This was given to me in a food bank box a few weeks back.  Looks ok doesn’t it?  Except this isn’t what jowl bacon is supposed to look like.

Food and kitchen 2016 033

I hadn’t really looked at it before but can you see how its sort of a miss match of fat and pink meat?  This would be an example of how meat glue is used.  You can’t see the glue.  About the only way to tell meat glue is used is by smelling it.  It has a “wet dog” kind of smell.

Ok, now have a look at what jowl bacon is supposed to look like.  Jowl bacon is the cheek of the pig from just below the eye.  The cheek is part meat and part fat.

Food and kitchen 2016 035

Now have a look at a side by side comparison of the two different types of jowl bacon.  Can you see the difference?  I suspect one is loaded with meat glue.  It does smell like it.

Food and kitchen 2016 034

Meat glue is made by the Ajinomoto company.  These are the same people who brought us MSG and aspartame.  We all know about the dangers of those, right?  Here is a site link with lots of information about meat glue and how its used.  Info about meat glue.  You can also buy meat glue on Amazon.

Meat glued together is just another way of short sizing the food we purchase.  What I keep wondering is “who” is getting the good food if we are getting the scraps?  One more reason for me to stay with my 1940s diet.

9 comments on “What are we eating?

    February 1, 2016

    The meat slime might explain why the frozen beef liver slices from the store were terrible!! They didn’t cook up right or have a good texture!
    They sure weren’t like braunsweiger lunchmeat either… Hoped for the convenience of pre-measured frozen packets, but will go back to buying chunks of liver & cutting it up myself…

    • Anita
      February 2, 2016

      You noticed that too? I got mine in a food bank box. It was a frozen packet of four slices. Last time I bought braunsweiger it tasted dirty. Haven’t bought any since.

  2. Margie in Toronto
    January 29, 2016

    Anita – just discovered your blog a few days ago and I’ve been steadily working my way through all your posts. Have to say – I’ve found it FULL of wonderful, sensible, easy to follow information so thank you so much.
    I’ll be retiring in a very few years time – and I’m looking at a fairly frugal retirement. Toronto is a very expensive city to live in so I’m trying to do a lot of things now to make retirement easier. Have to say that you are a real inspiration.

    • Anita
      January 31, 2016

      Hi Margie, thank you for the compliment. I’m glad to read you are planning early for retirement. It helps to practice frugal ways and get used to them before we actually need them.

  3. jane
    January 25, 2016

    Just one more reason that I’m glad I’m a vegan.

  4. Kathleen
    January 23, 2016

    I don’t think that I will ever eat again!!!!!!!!
    Well,processed anyhow…nasty nasty.
    eewwe eewwe eewwe!!! Ok, you got my jist.

    • Anita
      January 23, 2016

      Now you understand why its been so easy for me to stay away from processed foods and get my sugar levels under control. 🙂 When I read or see things like this my appetite goes away.

  5. Linda Smith
    January 22, 2016

    Anita, is that what is used to make “chicken nuggets” at fast food places? Remember that commercial a few years ago, “parts is parts”?

    • Anita
      January 23, 2016

      I remember that commercial. Now I’ve got it rolling around in my head. Of course I don’t know for sure but its possible that meat glue is used in nuggets. We are all just lab rats when it comes to our food supply.

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