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Meat analogue

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia


A meat analogue, also called meat substitute, mock meat, imitation meat or veat, approximates the aesthetic qualities (primarily texture, flavor and appearance) and/or chemical characteristics of certain types of meat. Some meat analogues rely on one or more types of flavouring.

Generally, meat analogue is understood to mean a food made from non-meats, sometimes without dairy products. The market for meat-less foods includes health-conscious non-vegetarians, persons following rules of Kashrut, or vegetarians and vegans. An example of this type of use is in Buddhist cuisine, which has the oldest known use of meat analogues.

Meat analogue may also refer to a meat-based, but healthier and/or less-expensive alternative to a particular meat product, such as surimi.

Vegetarian meat, dairy, and egg analogues

Some of the more traditional vegetarian meat analogues are based on centuries-old recipes for seitan (wheat gluten), other grains such as rice, mushrooms, legumes, tempeh, and/or pressed-tofu, with flavouring to make the finished product taste like chicken, beef, lamb, ham, sausage, seafood, etc. Some of the more-recent meat analogues include textured vegetable protein (TVP), which is a dry bulk commodity derived from soy, soy concentrate, mycoprotein-based Quorn, and modified defatted peanut flour to replace meat. TVP is produced more than any other meat analogue in most Western nations.

Examples of dairy analogues include those based primarily on processed rice, soy (tofu, soymilk, soy protein isolate), almond, cashew, gluten (such as with the first non-dairy creamers), nutritional yeast, or a combination of these, plus flavouring to make it taste like milk, cheeses, yogurt, mayonnaise, ice cream, cream cheese, sour cream, whipped cream, buttermilk, rarebit, or butter. Many dairy analogues contain casein, which is extracted dried milk proteins, when combined with soy and gluten, and are therefore not acceptable to vegans.

Examples of egg substitutes include tofu-scramblers, as well as Ener-G (primarily tapioca starch) and other similar products which recreate the leavening and binding effects of eggs in baked goods. Many people also use fruit products such as banana paste and applesauce as egg analogues in baking.

Surimi and similar meat-based meat analogues

Many common products such as 'imitation crab meat' are called surimi, a processed hash of fish plus flavorings to make it taste more like a shellfish. In some regions, 'Surimi' refers only to products made from fish, but the same process is also used with turkey in North America (e.g. turkey-dogs), and then often also called "surimi".

Examples of surimi include:

  • Surimi from fish, such as imitation crab, imitation shrimp, or imitation lobster
  • Surimi from turkey, such as hot dogs, brats, sausage, salami, lunch meats, loafs, burgers, bacon, ham, or ground
  • Other processed poultry products, such as emu, in the same forms described above for turkey.

Surimi products are often marketed as "imitation" meats, rather than "meat analogues": "imitation crab meat", "imitation shrimp", etc.

See also

  • Wheat gluten (food)
  • Artificial meat
  • Vegetarian cuisine
  • Vegetarianism
  • Veganism
  • Tofurkey
  • Lightlife - A brand of soy-based meat substitutes.

External links

  • Business statistics - sales of imitation meat and vegetarian products
  • Research Market: vegetarian profits
  • Soyfoods Assoc. of N. America
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