How to Use Soy to Enhance Ground Meats in Your Recipes
It's easy to add the benefits of soy to your school meals. If your district cooks from scratch, follow these simple steps to enhance ground meats with soy protein - or talk to your meat supplier or processor about ready-to-use soy-enhanced meat products. The same process works no matter which meal pattern you follow.
Step One: Determine Your Need
The first step is to determine the total amount of soy-enhanced meat you will need for your recipes.The proteins you may use are textured soy concentrate and functional concentrate/isolated soy protein or textured soy protein. You must hydrate any soy proteins, which come in the form of dry flakes or granules, before mixing with ground meat. The chart below illustrates an example of the ratio of meat, soy protein ingredients, salt and water needed. The protein in both formulations equals the all-meat protein level at 18 percent.
Step Two: Multiply Desired Yield by Ratios for Desired Enhancement Level
Once you've determined the ratio, it's simple to figure out the quantity needed for a desired enhancement level. The following example illustrates how a 200-pound yield, with a 30 percent soy-enhancement level, would be calculated.
If you need 200 pounds of ground meat enhanced with 30 percent hydrated soy, you would follow the ratios in the "30% blend" column as follows:
Using this formulation, the fat level drops from 20 percent to 14 percent. Using a 15 percent soy-enhanced blend drops the fat level to 17 percent.
Step Three: Hydrate and Mix with Ground Meat
Once you've determined the amounts you need, follow these steps to hydrate the soy concentrate:
1. Combine water (cool tap water) with soy concentrate.
2. Let stand 20 minutes - preferably at 50 degrees or cooler.
3. Add salt and soy isolate or functional concentrate (dry) to mixture and stir to blend.
4. Let stand 5 more minutes.
5. Thoroughly mix ground beef and hydrated soy.
6. Use as usual - in recipes, in cooking and in storage. The end product should be handled like regular meat. Overall, the 30 percent soy formula should have a good "mouth-feel" because the soy holds the added moisture throughout processing and cooking.
Note: To add extra flavor, consider hydrating soy protein in beef or chicken broth.
See Recipes section for more information. Remember, by combining textured soy concentrate with functional concentrate or isolated soy protein, your meat product will have a juicy and meat-like mouth feel.