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WORLD HOSPITALITY MAGAZINE
TABLE OF CONTENTS
FOOD AND DIET
TO SELECT A GOOD PIECE OF BEEF
From Sunday roast to boeuf
bourguignon, beef has been a favourite for generations. But which cut should
you choose? Our guide gives you the lowdown, from neck to rump via all the
bits in between, and suggests the best method of cooking for each. When buying
beef, you should make sure the meat is red, as brown colouring shows that it's
been open to the air for some time. The meat should be firm to the touch. Fat
should be creamy coloured and it's better if there's some fat flecked - or
marbled - throughout the meat, as this makes it more tender. Since the BSE
crisis in Britain, some traditional cuts of beef are no longer available.
Material that's considered to have a risk associated with it, such as the
spinal cord, is now removed in abattoirs before it reaches your local butcher.
This cheaper cut from the belly of the animal can be bought with or without
bones as a joint for slow-roasting, or for stewing and casseroling as cubes or
Chuck or blade:
Taken from the
shoulder, this cut is similar to neck, but can also be bought as a roasting
joint. As this joint isn't as tender as other cuts of beef, it needs
slow-roasting to achieve best results. Steaks and diced meat from the chuck
are ideal for casseroles, or even braising. Chuck meat is leaner than neck,
which makes it ideal for people who are watching their fat intake, but might
not want to pay for premium cuts.
Sometimes called thick flank or thin flank, depending on the thickness of the
meat, determined by which part of the animal it comes from. The flank is quite
lean and is generally useful for casseroles and curries or for slow-roasting.
It needs to retain the moisture that would be lost in quick-roasting.
Taken from the back
of the animal, forerib is a useful roasting cut. Sometimes, the ends of the
bones are cut off to make a separate joint. You may wish to buy a forerib
joint boned and rolled, so that stuffing and carving is easier. Although more
tender than some of the cheaper cuts, the forerib still needs cooking for
longer than premium joints. It's a mid-priced cut.
Neck or clod:
The meat from the neck of beef contains quite a large amount of fat and isn't
as tender as the premium cuts. This makes it ideal for slow-cooking. Neck can
be bought as steaks or ready-diced, which is perfect for casseroles and stews.
Price-wise, the cut is relatively cheap, so it's possible to buy more meat
than you need if you wish to take the time to trim the fat further.
Taken from the side of beef, ribs can be bought on the bone or as a
boned-and-rolled joint. Similar to sirloin, but not as tender, the ribs make
an ideal, mid-priced roasting joint.
Rump is similar to sirloin, but slightly less tender, so it's a little
cheaper. The steak cuts are generally lean, but do require more care when
The shin of beef is from the front leg and the leg cut is from the hind limb.
Both are cheaper cuts as they contain quite a large amount of connective
tissue. However, this makes them ideal for stews and casseroles as it melts
down during the long, slow cooking and gives extra flavour to the sauce. You
could make stock from the shin or leg if the bone is left in the joint. The
joint can be slow-roasted.
is the premium cut of beef, which costs quite a bit more per kilo than some
other cuts, but is more tender, so will taste better with less cooking.
Sirloin can be bought as a joint for roasting, on the bone or boned and
rolled. Fillets are often removed from the roasting joints, and are then sold
separately as steak. Fillet steaks are also the premium steak cut from beef.
Sirloin can tolerate high temperatures, which makes it ideal for grilling and
frying as steaks or oven-roasting as a joint.
Two separate cuts
of slightly different quality. Topside is similar to rump and can be roasted
as a boneless joint. It's not quite as tender as sirloin, so can't stand high
temperatures as well, but if treated with care, will provide an excellent
roast. Silverside is a coarser cut of beef than topside and doesn't roast as
well. It's often used for making boiled beef dishes or mince. However, there
are no bones in silverside which means that it provides a great deal of meat
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