Unsure about which cut of Beef to buy for your next big grill-out? Or are you just trepidatious about spending all that money and, maybe, getting a less-than-optimum cut for your particular application? Fear not! Because, now, there’s an app for that, courtesy of Canada Beef…
Flank steak and Skirt Steak are both relatively inexpensive and both are good
bets for the grill – if you tenderize and marinate them real good first. Both are
from the cow’s belly. Skirt Steak is fattier, a plus for tenderness.
Its grain runs roughly vertical in the pic above (across the cut).
Flank Steak is much leaner and the grain runs
horizontally (lengthwise on the cut).
Canada Beef? Who? That’s the new name for a consortium of Canadian Beef research and marketing organizations that officially amalgamated under the streamlined moniker just last month. And, in what may be their first foray into social media marketing, they’ve released The Roundup – a new app for Apple and Android phones, available in English and French.
Joyce Parslow, Canada Beef Director of Consumer Relations, explains: “Most shoppers make the assumption that all steaks are equal and then use the same cooking method for all. It’s pretty simple but often misunderstood: a steak is not a steak. Simmering Steaks like a Top Blade are amazing when done in the slow cooker where they tenderize nicely, but they are definitely going to be a disappointment if cooked on the grill.”
As a Chef, I know my Beef cuts and how to use them. But I’m 100 per cent with Parslow when she says a lot of home cooks and backyard grillmasters aren’t fully in the picture. I also suspect that Canada Beef is using the app to try to popularize some of the less-used and less-understood cuts of Beef. Those are also the less expansive cuts, on a price continuum that runs from around $8 a pound / $18 per kilo to over $30 a pound / $66 per kilo.
The message is, if you once had a bad experience with a cheaper, tougher piece of Beef and stayed away because of that, you can still afford beef if you buy the Blade Roast or Flank Steak or Skirt Steak and prepare it properly. Rejoyce in your slow cooker! Indulge in the braising pan! Marinate ’til the cows come home! (Beef pun not intended.) And don’t forget to rest your Meat properly and slice it across the grain for a juicy, tender mouthful…
~ Maggie J.