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Selecting Cuts of Meat

THE RIGHT MEAT FOR THE RIGHT PURPOSE

It is not only a matter of an excellent cut of meat.
Choosing the right cut for the right dish is what makes the difference

The different cooking methods
For almost all cooking methods, it’s best to have your meat at room temperature before cooking it so it cooks faster and more evenly.

Roasting
Great method for tender cuts of meat like racks of lamb, pork loin, poultry or beef ribs, rump and sirloin roasts. You basically put your meat in a hot oven (about 425 F) for the first 15 minutes and then lower the temperature to around 350 F for the rest of the cooking process making sure to baste the meat from time to time.

Slow-roasting
Basically the same method as roasting, but with an oven at a lower 300 F to 325 F and for a longer period of time. This method is very well suited for cuts that are a bit too tough for regular roasting like lamb and pork shoulder and pork belly.


Pot-roasting
A method that is suitable for the same cuts of meat as slow-roasting. You brown your meat in a pot on all sides (this helps keep the juices inside the meat) and then put the pot with the meat in the oven to roast and add a liquid like stock halfway through the cooking process. You can also add red wine in place of the stock if you allow it in your diet.

Pan-roasting
A bit like pot-roasting, but for tender cuts of meat and without a liquid. This method is well-suited for cuts that are tender, but are still too thick to simply fry like a steak. You brown the meat on all sides in a pan and then put it in the oven for the rest of the cooking process.

Frying and stir-frying
Suited for all kinds of tender cuts of meat like chicken breasts, steaks, chops, ribs & tenderloins. Frying, you heat up a pan to a medium-high heat and then put some kind of healthy fat (coconut oil, ghee or other animal saturated fat that won’t burn) on the meat or in the pan and cook the meat while turning every now and then until cooked through.

Stir-frying, you cut your tender piece of meat in thin slices and put them in a sizzling hot wok with a fat that’s heat resistant, and then stir nonstop until your meat is cooked.

Grilling
Simply sear your meat on the hot part of the grill and then let the rest of the cooking process happen on a medium-hot part of the grill. Make sure your piece of meat is well browned before turning so it doesn’t stick and turn it with tongs so the meat doesn’t get pierced which would make the juices run out of the meat.

Poaching
A good way to cook tender meat like fish and chicken, poaching will also produce a delicious stock that can be used for the sauce that will go with the final dish. You can poach whole chickens and whole fishes and the rule is to have a tight lid that will cook even the parts that are outside the liquid with the steam it produces. Keep the temperatures low and make sure that the liquid is no more than simmering.

Stewing and braising
This method is used for tougher cuts of meat like shoulders, shins or beef brisket and will produce a very flavorful and tender end product when done properly. Simply put your meat and a liquid like stock or water on the stove top, in the oven or in a crock-pot. Add tough vegetables (onions, carrots and celery are a good aromatic combination), herbs and spices and let cook at a low temperature until the meat is fork tender.

With braising, you usually use a whole cut of meat instead of having it cut in small pieces and you don’t cover the meat entirely with the liquid, letting the steam between the lid and the liquid act.

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