It’s easy to tell what pork product is being utilised when you see a plate of eggs and bacon, a sizzling rack of ribs, or a pork chop dinner. Pork products are disguised in many items, including candy, baked goods, and even chewing gum. Keep an eye on the ingredients list of anything you’re buying if you’re attempting to avoid eating pig. We compiled a list of the most common red flag components that signal the presence of pork.
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Gelatin is a colourless, flavourless, and odourless thickening substance. Pig and cow connective tissues, skin, and bones are typically used to make it. Jell-O, some ice creams, puddings, gummy candies, and marshmallows are just a few examples of gelatin-containing foods. To assist the salt or other seasonings attach to the peanuts, gelatin is often used. Some vitamins, seasickness treatments, toaster pastries, and some beers and wines may also have it in their ingredient lists. For pork-free alternatives, look for vegan options or foods thickened with pectin or agar-agar.
Pig, sheep, and cow fat are used to make stearic acid. At room temperature, it’s a solid fatty acid. Its melting point is around 158 degrees Fahrenheit. Cosmetics, candles, and soaps are all made with it. It can also be present in some chewing gums, according to the Los Angeles Times. It softens the gums to make chewing easier.
L-cysteine is widely found in commercial bread, bagels, tortillas, pie shells, pizza dough, and pastry. This amino acid is used to soften dough. It cuts down on mixing time by breaking down the dough’s proteins. Hog hair is usually used to make it. It could also arise from human hair or bird feathers. Read the ingredients list carefully to avoid consuming pork-derived components and look for baked products without L-cysteine or options prepared with vegan L-cysteine.
Lard is a well-kept secret among bakers who use it to make particularly flaky and crisp pie crusts. It’s also common in refried beans and other baked foods. You might discover that some chefs prefer to cook with lard rather than butter or oil. What exactly is it? Pig fat is converted into lard. According to The Salt Cured Pig, it can come from any section of the pig. Visceral fat found inside the loin and around the kidneys is used to make high-grade lard. It could also be the fatback. Lard almost seldom has a pig flavour. It imparts a buttery flavour to baked foods, for example.
Rennet is used in the ingredients list of some hard, aged cheeses such as gorgonzola, Parmesan, Pecorino Romano, and Grana Padano. Rennet is an enzyme that helps make these cheeses by separating liquid milk from solid curds. Vegetarians are frequently astonished to learn that rennet-containing cheese is not vegetarian. The gut lining of goats or newborn cows is typically used to make this enzyme. Pigs are another source. According to Science Direct, Pecorino de Farindola cheese in Italy is one of the few matured cheeses that uses pig rennet.