The Silly Secret about Chicken McNuggets

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Proust had his madeleines to evoke the taste of childhood; those of us born after the atomic age have chicken McNuggets.

Turns out the little poultry bites are made of some of the same stuff that goes into one of the most popular toys of the latter 20th century: Silly Putty.

The shocking (well, sort of shocking) revelation came as part of a CNN investigation as to why McNuggets on one side of the Atlantic taste different than on the other. Apparently, British McNuggets are cooked and then coated, where as the opposite is true for American ones. Because the British McNuggets absorb less oil, they have less fat.

But that’s not the only unsettling difference.

American nuggets contain at least two industrial chemicals, the sort with names that are as hard to pronounce as Icelandic volcanoes. Tertiary butylhydroquinone (tBHQ) is a petroleum-based preservative, and dimethylpolysiloxane is an “anti-foaming agent,” which also happens to be used in making “that peculiar pinkish substance that bounces like rubber and stretches like taffy”…Silly Putty!

To be fair, as a nutritionist at NYU points out to CNN, the chemicals most likely don’t pose any health risk.

After all, Silly Putty is non-toxic, right?

Read more: [ Via SlashFood ]

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