Questions about the flesh of an animal (especially mammal) used as food.

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80
votes
25answers
18k views

How do you properly cook a steak?

I love steaks so much, that I would like to get a green card and live in the States just to enjoy good steaks whenever I want. When I try to cook a steak at home (I live in Italy), it always turns ...
46
votes
10answers
268k views

How dangerous is it to refreeze meat that has been thawed?

I've often been told by people that I shouldn't refreeze meat (particularly hamburger meat) once it has been thawed. However, this seems a little silly to me. I can't imagine how meat that hasn't ...
36
votes
4answers
81k views

Why is it dangerous to eat meat which has been left out and then cooked?

If cooking meat kills bacteria, and bacteria are responsible for problems with eating meat which has been left out, then why is it dangerous to eat meat which has been left out at room temperature and ...
34
votes
8answers
141k views

Is there a problem with defrosting meat on the counter?

I generally defrost meat on the kitchen counter. A friend of mine suggested that this was dangerous and suggested that I defrost meat in the refrigerator. I am no biologist but it seems to me that as ...
30
votes
3answers
5k views

Why should I “rest” meat after cooking?

I often read in recipes that I should "rest" meat after it has been cooked but what does resting the meat actually do?
28
votes
6answers
39k views

How long do you let a steak from the fridge come up to temperature, and when do you salt it?

Before cooking a steak, you're supposed to let it sit out at room temperature. You're also supposed to salt it. What is the proper timing for these steps? How long do you let the steak come up to ...
27
votes
15answers
146k views

Is it bad to cook frozen meat without waiting it to be unfrozen?

I wonder if it is bad to cook frozen meat (chicken, fish, beef,...) without waiting it to be unfrozen? Sometimes, I realize I forget to take meat out of my freezer beforehand, when I am too hungry ...
26
votes
9answers
30k views

How to rest meat but not let it get too cold?

Having read this question I am persuaded that resting meat is good for its flavour. But if the meat has a good temperature straight after it's been cooked, it seems as though it will be too cold after ...
25
votes
5answers
2k views

Does searing meat lock in moisture?

I just saw a claim to this end in another thread, and it is perpetuated about the internet and in many cookbooks. So: Is it true? Does making a nice crust (maillard reaction) on a roast seal in juice ...
24
votes
12answers
26k views

How do I pound chicken (or other meat) without making a mess?

Despite my best efforts, my kitchen (and sometimes the chicken) always looks like a war zone after pounding 8 or 10 breasts. Maybe this is just a messy job, but I think there must be something I'm ...
22
votes
9answers
99k views

How do Chinese restaurants tenderize their meat?

I eat at a lot of Chinese restaurants now and also while growing up. I often wondered how is it that the chicken, pork, and beef in dishes are always so tender. I can never replicate it when I cook. ...
20
votes
2answers
2k views

Best chopping board material for meat

I've heard that using a wooden chopping board for cutting meat is not very hygienic as it is a porous material. If that is the case, then what would a chopping board ideally be made out of when ...
19
votes
4answers
15k views

Does meat need to be washed before preparation?

I don't even remember where I have learned that, but I've always thought it common knowledge: Before a piece of meat gets seasoned, or malleted for tenderizing (sorry, don't know the English word for ...
19
votes
2answers
12k views

Food safety of meat vs. veggies and fruit with mold on them

Obviously, it's bad to eat moldy food, so I don't do so. However, the other day I was presented with both an old pot roast and asparagus in the fridge, both of which had grown mold. Of course, I ...
16
votes
9answers
165k views

How long is it safe to marinate meat?

I started marinating some almost-thawed chicken and skirt steak in the refrigerator on Monday. It's Saturday, and I still haven't gotten around to cooking the meat. Is the meat still safe to cook ...
15
votes
5answers
1k views

Tricks to ensure Mailliard/Browning reaction?

Seems like a question that would've been asked before, but I couldn't find a pre-existing question. Sorry if this is a duplicate. Anyway, I do a lot of stir-fry, usually with chicken. My usual ...
15
votes
4answers
160k views

How long can cooked food be safely stored at room/warm temperature?

If I leave fully-cooked food (particularly meat) out at warm temperature - say on the counter or in a crock pot that's been turned off - how long will it stay safe to eat? Does it make any ...
14
votes
15answers
12k views

Why does my chicken breast become so dry?

When I roast a whole chicken, I always make sure that my chicken is cooked to the proper temperature. Quite often, this results in juicy legs and thighs, but dry breasts. Is there a reason the ...
14
votes
6answers
40k views

What is the difference between shawarma and gyros?

I see both of these terms used in restaurants that seem to specialize in meat on a vertical rotisserie served in a pita sandwich. I'm not clear on whether there is a difference between the two or if ...
14
votes
3answers
35k views

What meats can I serve medium rare and why?

It is generally accepted that pork and chicken must be cooked completely (unless put through a strong curing process) while certain cuts of beef and lamb can be served on the rare side. Why is this? ...
14
votes
5answers
1k views

Why do my burgers end up round?

When I broil or grill my burgers, I end up with burgers that are round in the middle. I grind my own beef blend and form my patties the same every time. When I cook my burgers in a pan I don't get ...
14
votes
1answer
13k views

How should I deal with blood released while thawing meat in the refrigerator?

Saturday I pulled a package of venison from my freezer to thaw and hope to make stroganoff with it tonight. However, this morning I noticed that the package (in a bowl) had really released a lot of ...
14
votes
2answers
444 views

What is freezer burn?

What causes freezer burn? How can I tell if meat has freezer burn?
13
votes
1answer
760 views

Is there a difference between freezing meat at 26°F and 0°F?

According to this answer, you are allowed to market turkeys as fresh as long as they haven't been frozen below 26°F. What is the purpose of this law/regulation?
13
votes
2answers
807 views

Properties of a good steak?

I'm talking about what makes a good piece of meat for a steak. not how to cook it. What type of cut? Thickness? dry aged? to marinate or not? seasoning? I've always been partial to a Ribeye (high ...
13
votes
6answers
8k views

How long can I let a steak rest after seasoning and before cooking?

I read over at Serious eats that when seasoning a steak, you either need to cook it immediately after salting, or after 40 minutes and more. (To sum up the article, this is due to a process of ...
12
votes
3answers
8k views

Chili/Stew - Is it necessary to cook all the meat before adding to the rest of the ingredients?

I'm planning on making a big batch of chili this weekend. Usually I brown/cook all the meat before putting everything in a pot to simmer for several hours. I just read On Browning Ground Meat in ...
12
votes
3answers
2k views

When coating raw meat with flour, does leaving it for a period of time make the flour 'disappear'?

I recently trying the flour coating trick before frying it so my meat can withstand more temperature and does not get dried up so easily inside. However, when I rolled the meat with all-purpose flour ...
12
votes
2answers
5k views

“Cooking” with acid (ceviche)

At a tappas bar, I had shrimp ceviche. In this dish, the shrimp is "cooked" not by high temperature but by the citric acid of its marinade. This would be really fun to make at home. For such dishes, ...
12
votes
9answers
171k views

Can I put frozen meat in a slow cooker?

I was wondering if I can put meat directly from the freezer into a slow-cooker. I want to be able to put chicken in the slow-cooker without having to let it defrost for a whole day in the fridge. It ...
12
votes
5answers
48k views

How long does uncooked meat last when kept in the freezer?

Chicken, beef, or even shrimp? How long can I keep it there before it goes bad?
12
votes
3answers
577 views

What brine ingredients are effective?

I frequently brine chicken and pork, and mostly it's just salt and water, sometime sugar, and occasionally garlic. But I've seen all sorts of other "goodies" people add in, like spices, herbs, ...
11
votes
4answers
3k views

Is horse meat safe to eat?

It's been in the news lately about horse meat being disguised as beef. Is this really that serious? Is horse meat unsafe? Or is it just taboo because horses are "cute"?
11
votes
11answers
648 views

What is a simple and easy way to make a meat dish for a college student

I need a bit of variety and more simplicity in my cooking. My 25 minute chicken curry is great, but it can get a bit frantic since I often leave cooking until I am very hungry (studying takes ...
11
votes
6answers
65k views

How should baking soda be used to tenderize meat?

At some Chinese restaurants, I've had beef dishes where the meat was unusually tender. It also has a somewhat unusual texture, which is hard to describe. I understand that this is a result of using ...
11
votes
1answer
3k views

What happens to the flavour of meat when you cook it Star Anise with Onions?

What exactly is the chemical reaction that occurs when you cook Star Anise with Onions? According to Heston Blumenthal doing this intensifies the flavour of meat. Ultimately what I want to know is ...
11
votes
2answers
582 views

How Can I Tell If Meat Has Been Brined?

My wife and I were eating some rotisserie chicken the other night and she commented something to the effect of "I think they brined this because I can taste the seasoning pretty deep in the meat." I ...
10
votes
5answers
2k views

Why does prepackaged deli meat taste better when you take each slice and “fluff” it?

If you take a package of deli meat and remove the slab, place it on bread and add your condiments in never tastes as good as when you take the slab and "fluff" up each piece as you lay it on your ...
10
votes
7answers
3k views

Why do burgers sometimes fall apart on the grill?

Sometimes when cooking a burger I have had it completely fall apart for no apparent reason. Is this due to using a ground meat that is too lean? I don't add anything to the meat and don't spend too ...
10
votes
2answers
4k views

Is the “gamey” taste of venison just a polite name for “rotten”?

I have had a theory for a long time that it is the blood in the deer which causes the gamey flavor. Hunters gut the deer soon after a kill, but they don't bleed it or chill it for hours or days. It ...
10
votes
2answers
1k views

Does butter really penetrate a steak when allowing it to rest after cooking?

I understand that when a steak rests after cooking, the muscle fibers relax, allowing the juices to reenter the meat as described here. I've heard that while the meat relaxes and the juices flow in, ...
10
votes
1answer
2k views

Cooking Temperature for Crocodile meat?

Does anybody have any experience cooking crocodile meat sous-vide? We found some crocodile meat at our local butcher, and bought some on a whim. Judging by appearances, it looked quite a lot like ...
9
votes
5answers
900 views

Uses of Horse Meat

What (roughly) does horse meat taste like? What kind of dishes can I make with it?
9
votes
5answers
13k views

What is the correct internal temperature for rabbit meat?

I have never cooked rabbit before, and my charts don't include rabbit. Are there food safety considerations speaking for thorough heating, as with chicken, or is it acceptable to cook it medium rare? ...
9
votes
3answers
4k views

First onion or first minced meat?

When making e.g. spaghetti sauce, do I: first sweat the onions and then add the minced meat? first brown the minced meat and then add the onions? do both at the same time but in different pans and ...
9
votes
6answers
16k views

Does milk tenderize meat?

In another question I suggested that milk might be used as a tenderizer. That generated an amount of scepticism, so I think it is worth breaking the question out. The idea came from "The New Best ...
9
votes
4answers
1k views

Telling if small pieces of meat are cooked - blind or colour blind chef

When I am cooking small pieces of meat (so a meat thermometer is not an appropriate tool - I'm thinking of things like shredded chicken being stir-fried, frying or grilling slices of bacon, or minced ...
8
votes
7answers
541 views

How to make the best of tough meat while camping?

The problem is my buddies like to buy cheap steaks to take camping (usually from the 5 for $5 bin), then they hand them to me like I could work some miracle other than adding cracked pepper and trying ...
8
votes
3answers
1k views

Are products labeled Kosher or Halal generally of a better quality than those that aren't?

I'm talking grocery store products here (including packaged meat), not Butcher Counter where I can grill the butcher about origin.
8
votes
4answers
301 views

How do you source meat that will be minimally cooked?

I was recently asked where one could find meat that could be prepared "blue to blue-rare". What kinds of meat (other than fish) can be prepared this way and how would one go about finding a reliable ...