Take the 2-minute tour ×
Seasoned Advice is a question and answer site for professional and amateur chefs. It's 100% free, no registration required.

Sometimes when I'm trying a new cooking method that uses different cooking temperatures compared to what I use normally, I find it difficult to estimate when my roast/meat is done.

Digital meat thermometers that make a noise when the internal temperature reaches a certain value are therefore attractive to me. However, when I have used meat thermometers (I have not used one of those digital thermometers where you leave the probe inside the meat during cooking) and penetrate the meat with the probe, juices start to leak out when I then remove the probe and the meat will start to dry out.

How do you usually deal with this? How do you use meat thermometers and prevent juice losses?

Another note: Is there an information sheet somewhere that tells you, approximately, how long you have to cook different kinds of meat products on a lbs basis to meet target internal temperatures or meat texture (e.g. rare, medium, well done, etc.)?

share|improve this question

2 Answers 2

up vote 12 down vote accepted

While I heartily recommend a remote probe thermometer that you can leave in your meat and have a readout outside of the oven, it is only for convenience. Piercing the meat with a thermometer (or fork, etc) isn't going to cause any significant loss of juice. You may rupture a couple of cells right where the thermometer went in, but that's it. Your meat isn't just a water-balloon of juices waiting to be popped, so you needn't worry.

Myth: Never use a fork to turn meat

Is it ok to probe my meat?

share|improve this answer

I really recommend using a thermometer you leave in the oven. It saves you a lot of trouble, especially because you don't need to take the meat out of the oven and you don't have to worry about drying out your meat.

Analog versions are left completely in the oven, however it might be hard to read the temperature as you have to adjust the thermometer to face the oven door. Using them with closed baking dish is impossible.

The digital ones I know, have the probe inside the oven. A heat-proof cable which is small enough not to cause any problems with the oven door, is then connected to a screen. Or in more fancier versions, to an antenna that transmits the data to the screen.
A lot of those already have programs available to cook your meat to a desired point. You stick the probe into the meat and just wait for the core to reach a certain temperature. You don't have to worry about time, just watch the temperature climb up until the meat is done. The only thing you need to take care of is to stick the tip of the probe close to the center of the piece of meat.

share|improve this answer

Your Answer

 
discard

By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.