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A chicken nugget is a chicken product made from either meat slurry or chicken breasts cut to shape, breaded or battered, then deep-fried or baked. Fast food restaurants typically fry their nuggets in vegetable oil.
The chicken nugget was invented in the 1950s by Robert C. Baker, a food science professor at Cornell University, and published as unpatented academic work. Dr. Baker's innovations made it possible to form chicken nuggets in any shape. McDonald's recipe for Chicken McNuggets was created on commission from McDonald's by Tyson Foods in 1979 and the product was sold beginning in 1980.
Some fast food restaurants have launched vegetarian alternatives. McDonald's served Garden McNuggets made of beans and Swedish fast food restaurant Max Hamburgare offers a dish containing nuggets made of falafel. Quorn also supplies vegetarian chicken style nuggetts.
In random surveys of chicken products across the United States in 2012, the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine found nearly half the samples to contain fecal matter. In poultry farms and in transportation to slaughter houses, chickens defecate on themselves and stand in their own feces. There is also fecal matter in the intestines. While the slaughter process removes the feathers and intestines, only visible fecal matter is removed. With slaughter lines processing up to 140 birds/minute, safety inspectors do not have adequate time to examine fecal matter.
The American Journal of Medicine published findings analyzing the composition of chicken nuggets. The study found that on average, only about 50% of the meat is composed of skeletal muscle. The remainder is composed entirely of fat.
The largest recorded chicken nugget weighed 51.1 pounds (23.2 kg) and was 3.25 feet (0.99 m) long and 2 feet (0.61 m) wide and was created by Empire Kosher. It was unveiled at Kosherfest in Secaucus, New Jersey on October 29, 2013.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Chicken nuggets.|
- (Cornell University) obituary, March 16, 2006
- What's in Those Nuggets? Meat Substitute Stirs Debate
- Quorn Meat Free Chicken Nuggets
- "Fecal Contamination in Retail Chicken Products". The Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine. April 2012. Retrieved 2015-12-16.
- Bilgili, S. F. (1999-02-01). "Recent advances in electrical stunning". Poultry Science 78 (2): 282–286. doi:10.1093/ps/78.2.282. ISSN 0032-5791. PMID 10051043.
- deShazo, Richard D.; Bigler, Steven; Skipworth, Leigh Baldwin (2013-11-01). "The autopsy of chicken nuggets reads "chicken little"". The American Journal of Medicine 126 (11): 1018–1019. doi:10.1016/j.amjmed.2013.05.005. ISSN 1555-7162. PMID 24035124.
- "Photos: World's largest chicken nugget on display in Secaucus". New Jersey On-Line. October 29, 2013. Retrieved October 31, 2013.
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