I'm always on the lookout for recipes in our local paper, especially since they published one of mine from my Simple Cookery blog. This weeks food section had a long article on MSG (monosodium glutamate). I was surprised to find out the flavor enhancer has been around since 1908. Personally, I don't really get along with this additive or with sulfites. While I won't fall over with an allergic reaction to either, in moderate quantities, my face will flush almost immediately. Eventually I'll end up with a headache. Small quantities found in soups or other foods don't seem to bother me much. It's probably more a matter of 'layered' exposure to MSG. For instance, I probably get a lot more exposure at a food buffet than in a can of cream of mushroom soup.
Growing up, we always had a can of Ac'cent in the kitchen. Mom and Grandma used it a lot in their meat dishes. I always thought of it more as a meat tenderizer for cheap cuts of meat than a flavor enhancer. At some point Mom stopped using it, and I've never used it in any recipes. I was surprised to find that a lot of my friends still use it. In one of Mom's cookbooks every meat, poultry and fish dish calls for Ac'cent. I always just omitted the ingredient not knowing what to substitue for it. Lately I've been thinking maybe I'm missing something. A little tenderizing, a little flavor, a little trouble breathing.....Next thing you know someone will tell me Worcestershire sauce has anchovies in it.
1 and 1/4 pounds ground beef
1/2 pound ground pork
3 slices bread torn into pieces (about 2 cups)
1 cup milk
1 egg, beaten
1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon Accent
1/2 teaspoon thyme
1/4 teaspoon pepper
Mix all ingredients together and divide into 12 equal portions. Pack lightly into muffin tin. Bake at 350 degrees for about 20 minutes.
Meanwhile, blend together 1/3 cup firmly packed brown sugar and 1/3 cup ketchup. After about 20 minutes of baking time, spoon 2 teaspoons of ketchup mixture on top of each muffin and continue baking for another 20 minutes. Total baking time approximately 40 minutes.