Wine isn’t just for parties or for special occasions. It’s also a great partner to meals in general. Most particularly, wine is the perfect pair to certain cuts of meat. If you are looking for a great dish to pair your wine with, then you need to learn how to cook with red meat.
Red meat is basically the meat from mammals distinguished by their red hue. These meats include beef, pork, veal, and lamb. Aside from being easy to cook with, red meat is also nutritious. Some of its key nutrients include vitamin B3, B12, B6, Zinc, Iron, Selenium, and many more. Before getting meat from the market or any other source, it’s best to know more about its different types and how to choose the best one for your upcoming wine-drinking session. Here’s how you can find some of the best red meat recipes to try out in your kitchen.
Finding The Best Dishes For Wine
Of course, one of the first sources you can find amazing red meat recipes on is through the internet. There are many websites that give you literally thousands of red meat dishes to choose from. That’s not including instructional videos from top chefs like Gordon Ramsey, Jamie Oliver, and many more.
What’s great about these online recipe cookbooks is that they come complete with a list of ingredients and measurements, a step-by-step guide on how to cook dishes, as well as photos of how the dish should look like at the end. You can also filter dishes depending on their complexity so even if you are a newbie when it comes to cooking, you can still find a dish that suits you.
Another great source of recipes for red meat is your local butches. Meat experts from Grutto suggest befriending your local butcher. Aside from giving you great cuts of meat, they can also tell you which cuts are best for certain dishes. Their years of expertise when it comes to cooking assures that you will never run out of recipes to choose from.
You need to keep in mind that not all red meat dishes are great with wine. Grilled or pan-fried steaks work well with wines like Cabernet Sauvignon. On the other hand, the smoky and strong taste of roasts works well with red wine such as Bordeaux. The trick is to complement the taste of the wine with the taste of the meat.
For stronger tasting dishes like stews, roasts, barbecues, and briskets, you’d want to pair it with wine that doesn’t leave a strong aftertaste. Then for red meat dishes that aren’t too tasty, you’d want to look for a wine that’s on the stronger side.
If you are dining at a restaurant, you can ask the waiters what type of wine pairs with certain dishes. In some restaurants, the menu already shows what types of dishes complement certain drinks.
You need to keep in mind that the wine won’t be something you quench your thirst with after a spoonful of meat. It’s basically something you swirl around your mouth to complement the taste of the dish you are eating.
Dos And Don’ts When Cooking Red Meat
One of the first things you might be tempted to do when cooking with red meat is rinsing it through the water. The common belief is that this will rid the meat of the bacteria that is on it. However, this process is unnecessary because all of the bacteria will be killed off during the cooking process anyway. Rinsing your red meat before cooking might even do more harm than good. What happens is that when you rinse meat, the bacteria from the meat might splash onto other ingredients or on your kitchen counter. As such, you should simply leave the red meat be.
When you are handling raw meat, make sure to wash your hands properly before and after you touch the meat. This is a huge mistake that most novice chefs commit. What happens is that the bacteria from the meat passes onto your hands. You risk cross-contamination if you touch cooking utensils or even other ingredients if you don’t wash your hands.
If you are cooking pan-fried steak or cooking grilled steak, you can pat dry the meat with a towel. This removes any excess moisture in the meat which will allow it to cook more properly. You should also completely thaw your meat before cooking it as any frozen residue inside the steak will cause it to cook unevenly.
Before you cook, you should really ask your butcher about the cooking time of certain meats. Red meats like beef tend to be tender if cooked for a few minutes only. However, if you overcook it, it can result in a really rubbery meal that’s tough to chew and even tougher to digest.
Overcooking red meat can also be detrimental to your health. According to studies, heterocyclic amines and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons start sticking to the surface of the meat when it stays on the heat for too long. These two compounds have been linked to cancer which means you really need to avoid overcooking meat.
If you’re cooking steak, we suggest cooking it on a pan first to get a tasty crust on the outside. To finish the meat, preheat the oven and throw your meat in there once the crust begins to develop outside of the steak.
When cooking red meat for stews, cooking for prolonged periods is necessary. You want the meat to be as tender as possible if it is a part of a soup dish. Undercooking meat in the soup makes it really tough to chew so set up a timer for at least an hour once the water begins boiling.
Cooking is a fun hobby to get into but it’s easy to get discouraged by complex ingredients such as certain types of fishes and chicken meat. What’s great about red meat is that it’s very easy to cook with so it can be your launching pad towards a fruitful cooking journey filled with many great dishes.