How to Guide 2017
choose a butcher
Finding and enjoying the best cuts
of meat can be a pleasure. The taste
of a delicious cut of meat, cooked to
perfection, is magnificent.
But it can be a challenge. Finding
the best cuts of meat isn’t a straight-
forward task. It involves a detailed
and intricate body pf knowledge.
There’s a great variety of choices
and grades of meat — including USDA
prime, choice and select grades.
The choices and options can be
overwhelming. Is there a way to be
sure you are getting exactly what ap-
peals to you?
Fortunately, there, is. Cooking a
great meal, with meat as the center-
piece, doesn't have to be an impossible
Equipped with the right informa-
tion, you can always find what you
need to make your event a success —
whether you’re creating a meal for a
dinner party or simply preparing for
an informal and intimate dinner.
One of the best ways to put your
doubts to rest is to talk to an expert.
Look for a store with friendly, knowl-
edgeable staff. They can help you
narrow your choices, whether it’s beef,
pork, poultry, lamb or even something
more exotic. Many shops have a spe-
cialist on staff who can help guide you
to the best decision.
Even the meat departments at most
supermarkets or butcher shops have
staff who are happy to help, giving
advice and educating you about the
many different cuts available, and
how to prepare each one.
Once you leave the store with your
food, you’ll have one opportunity to
prepare it the right way. These help-
ful staff members can help you avoid
making a costly mistake.
A good cook knows that a good
recipe needs a tender, delicious piece
of meat with perfect texture. And cus-
tom cuts of meat often deliver better
results than off-the-shelf items.
At quality shops, you will be able
to have your meat custom cut to your
Here are some more tips to guide
you through the process of selecting
the best cut of meat.
1. Choose the right cut of meat
for your recipe.
Consider how you are cooking the
meat and what you want your result to
be. Traditional barbecue uses cheap,
tough cuts and cooks them slowly until
they become soft and tender.
On the other hand, a barbecue
brisket is chewy and tough because it
is cooked quickly over a full blast of
heat. But that same meat can become
delicious and smooth if you smoke it
slowly over low heat for hours.
Other cuts of meat will become
tough and flavorless if you grill them
too slowly. For example, Porterhouse
or T-bone are best cooked over high,
direct heat for a short time.
2. Consider the density or
toughness of the meat and its fat
Density can be hard to ascertain, so
usually the cut indicates the density or
toughness. Meats culled from different
areas of an animal tend to be more or
Marbling - small streaks of fat run-
ning through the cut - can sometimes
tell you about the fat content. Many
people think marbling gives meat its
However, the quality of the mar-
bling is important. Big veins of fat
don't cook very easily, so thick and
consistent cuts of marbled meat would
need to be slow-cooked to release the
flavor. Small, thin ribbons of fat are
usually excellent for a traditional
steak cooked over high heat.
3. Examine the color of themeat
and askwhether carbonmonoxide
is used to keep it looking red.
Meat browns quickly when exposed
to air. If you find bright-red meat
without additives used to preserve
that vivid color, then it is an ultra-
Novice cooks might start with a
cheaper cut of meat, such as sirloin
steak for grilling. Once you have prac-
ticed your grilling skills, work your
way up to expensive meats such as
New York strips, T-bones, filet mignon
Ultimately, it is the quality of your
cooking skills coupled with your selec-
tion of meat that will make a great
Wise Choice Custom Meats at 203
N. U.S. Highway 287 in Decatur can
provide all your meat needs.
If you need a special cut for a holi-
day occasion stop by and talk with the
professional staff. Call 817-752-8452