"Searing" meat does not actually seal in moisture

"Searing" meat does not actually seal in moisture

The incorrect belief that searing meat "seals in the juices" is widespread and still often repeated. This theory was first put forth by Justus von Liebig,[1] a German chemist and food scientist, around 1850. The notion was embraced by contemporary cooks and authors, including Auguste Escoffier. It is more typically cited in regards to larger cuts, especially steaks and chops, of non-poultry meats such as beef, pork, lamb and tuna.Simple experimentation can test the theory, in which two similar cuts of meat are cooked, one of which is seared and one of which is not. Each pieces then cooked normally in a preferred method (roasting, baking, grilling etc.) until each reaches exactly the same predetermined internal temperature. They are then weighed to see which lost more moisture. The Food Network program Good Eats carried out such a test in episode EA1H22, Myth Smashers. As early as the 1930s, such experiments were carried out; the seared roasts lost the same amount of moisture or more. (Generally more liquid is lost, since searing exposes the meat to higher temperatures that destroy more cells, in turn releasing more liquid.)[2] Moisture in liquid and vapor form continues to escape from a seared piece of meat. For this reason, searing is sometimes done at the end of the cooking process to gain the flavor benefits of the Maillard reaction, as well as the benefits of cooking for a greater duration with more wetness.[citation needed]