There are many ways to cook meat, with the wonders of slow-cooking yet to be explored by steak-lovers. The slow cooker is your go-to kitchen appliance for slow-cooked meats, and the rewards are sumptuous for chefs who get it right.
Slow cooking is excellent for the stringy, hard cuts of meat, transforming them into juicy, tender, dripping delights that are full meals all on their own. They’re highly nutritious, too.
The slow cooking is done in a tightly-lidded pot in an oven or on the stove pot. When you slow cook choice portions of meat, especially cut from muscular areas like the neck and shoulder, the flavors are gradually infused, simmering as if it is on low heat.
The resulting meat is tender and retains most of the juices.
Texture and Taste
Slow-cooked meats owe much of their quality to their tender texture and flavorful taste. Of course, the juices help improve the latter. But then, most of the texture is down to the cooking duration, which is bound to bring out the meat’s richness.
After preparing all your seasoning and ingredients, you place everything into the slow cooker. As the meat is rich in collagen and protein, a low quantity of liquid and low heat can help you get that rich taste while retaining freshness.
Here are some crucial tips to keep you on the right path:
Don’t force the slow-cooking process
Only dust the meat lightly in flour before cooking for the best results with gravy.
If potatoes or other starchy foods are in the dish, don’t add flour
You can add vegetables to improve the flavor and texture
There are different techniques for slow-cooking. Let’s take a look at some of them:
This technique is suitable for tough cuts like brisket, boneless chuck roast, and chuck steak. You can’t use these parts for regular roasting as they’re much too hard.
With pot roasting, you have to first brown the meat for a bit with a hot pam. Afterward, you can put it into an oven. Then, you’ll have to slow cook it in a tightly-lidded pot with vegetables and liquid. You can use vegetables, carrots, and turnips for the best results.
Cook for at least three hours to get more tender and juicy meat.
Braising is pretty easy. You have to add all the relevant ingredients to the slow cooker. The meat will have to simmer very slowly in the viscous liquid to produce a delicious blend of flavors.
Cuts from the leg, neck, and shoulder are ideal.
If you’re leaving out wine as an ingredient, the stock should be increased by 400ml.
Cooking with Excess Fat
Depending on the part of the meat you’re using and your array of ingredients, the broth can produce a lot of fat while you’re cooking.
Skim it off with a ladle or a spoon when you discover the excess. Begin at the dish’s center, ensure that the spoon is depressed, and be careful that liquid does not enter it.
With a spiraling motion, move the ladle to the dish’s edge, where the accumulated fat is. Allow the excess fat to trickle into the spoon, dispose of it, and repeat the procedure until most of the fat is gone.