There is nothing better than a well-cooked piece of meat, however, actually preparing one takes time and effort. Not only do you need a good piece of meat to start with, you want to flavor it well and cook it to just the right temperature. Adding to the difficulty is that everyone has a different opinion on what flavors taste best and what is the best way to serve it – rare, medium, well done?
One thing everyone can agree upon is that what you do with the meat after it is cooked is equally important as how you cook it. Once the meat is done, it is important that it is given time to rest before being cut. This minimizes the amount of juice that is lost during cutting. If given proper time to rest, the meat will taste better. For example, steaks should rest approximately 5 minutes before being cut.
When it is time to cut the meat, make sure you are slicing against the grain. A sharp knife will work best and it should always be done on a wood cutting board. These are two pieces of cooking equipment that are affordable and important to keep on hand. Buying wood cutting boards in bulk, such as through Bulk Cutting Boards, may be worth considering since they are so versatile in the kitchen. It is also important to remember that you should always be using separate cutting boards for raw meats and fruits and vegetables, therefore you need multiple.
If you are unsure as to how to cut against the grain, look for the distinct lines in the meat. They are actually muscle fibers running through the meat which appear as lines. These fibers can be tough to chew if left uncut. By cutting against the grain, you will slice through these fibers, making the meat tender and easier to eat. In many tougher cuts, such as brisket and flank steak, these lines are easily identified while it can be harder with more tender cuts.
Even if you prepare and cook the best meat, it can turn into an unchewable disaster if you don’t take the time to cut it right.