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Are stuffings and forcemeats the same thing?

These two words are often used interchangeably, and there is some confusion about their exact meanings, probably because forcemeat, which is finely chopped and usually made of spiced meat or poultry, is often an ingredient in stuffings. Both are used to fill meat, poultry and vegetables and have been used for centuries, especially to make roast meat go farther and to add flavor and moistness.

The staple ingredients for stuffings are breadcrumbs, which add bulk, and egg, which binds the stuffing mixture together. This can be confusing for cooks because it is natural to think that breadcrumbs will make stuffings stodgy, and that the egg will make it creamy because it visibly loosens the mixture when added to it. But, in fact, a high proportion of breadcrumbs will give a soft and tender stuffing, while using too much egg makes a stuffing stodgy once it has been cooked and the egg has set.

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04:39:48 on 11/18/08 by Webmaster - Questions and Answers -