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Old 09-20-2008, 02:09 AM   #11
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There are two basic methods to test for how done your meat is while you are cooking it - use a meat thermometer, or press on the meat with your finger tips. The problem with the meat thermometer approach is that when you poke a hole into the meat with a thermometer, it can let juices escape, juices that you would rather have stay in the meat. For this reason, most experienced cooks rely on a "finger test" method, especially on steaks (whole roasts are better tested with a thermometer). My mother has been trying to get me to test meat with my finger tips for years, and for years, being somewhat of a scaredy cat (won't it burn my fingers?) I ignored, avoided, ran away from the idea. Then my friend David showed me up. Here's a guy who loves to grill but doesn't know how to boil water. (Really. Cannot boil water. Just ask him, he's proud of the fact.) David taught me how to test for the doneness of meat using this method and these days half the time I don't even bother with a thermometer. Now the point of this story is not to embarrass David (though that would be fun, if it were even possible) but to encourage you, if like me, you've been shying away from trying this approach. This really isn't rocket science.

This is one of those things that gets easier with practice. The next time you cook a steak, even if you are still planning to rely on a meat thermometer, press on the meat here and there while it cooks, and compare the feeling of the meat with the following finger test. With practice, you will become more confident.


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http://www.elise.com/recipes/archive...ss_of_meat.php
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Old 09-20-2008, 01:31 PM   #12
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Each to their own. My point is that any type of "palm" test is highly subjective and subject to error, i.e. how "loose" is loose, etc.?
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Old 09-20-2008, 09:54 PM   #13
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There are two basic methods to test for how done your meat is while you are cooking it - use a meat thermometer, or press on the meat with your finger tips. The problem with the meat thermometer approach is that when you poke a hole into the meat with a thermometer, it can let juices escape, juices that you would rather have stay in the meat. For this reason, most experienced cooks rely on a "finger test" method, especially on steaks (whole roasts are better tested with a thermometer). My mother has been trying to get me to test meat with my finger tips for years, and for years, being somewhat of a scaredy cat (won't it burn my fingers?) I ignored, avoided, ran away from the idea. Then my friend David showed me up. Here's a guy who loves to grill but doesn't know how to boil water. (Really. Cannot boil water. Just ask him, he's proud of the fact.) David taught me how to test for the doneness of meat using this method and these days half the time I don't even bother with a thermometer. Now the point of this story is not to embarrass David (though that would be fun, if it were even possible) but to encourage you, if like me, you've been shying away from trying this approach. This really isn't rocket science.

This is one of those things that gets easier with practice. The next time you cook a steak, even if you are still planning to rely on a meat thermometer, press on the meat here and there while it cooks, and compare the feeling of the meat with the following finger test. With practice, you will become more confident.


ALL FOUND HERE
This one sounds great as well as the others mentioned. This does sound like one I would use most often. I find it to be one of those things though where you have to continuously go back and forth between the meat and your hands because by the time your finger touches the meat, you have already forgotten where it should be at!

Haha!

Well, another question I have that I think can go on this same thread-

While I test for done-ness by hand, how can I tell if the meat is say medium, or just really tender? This is a question just to know since I really have maybe had four tender steaks out of the hundreds I have cooked in my time cooking. Is there a way to tell the difference between doneness and tenderness? An example, say you had a really tender steak. If it is tender, wouldn't it feel the same as it should if it was medium if it was really well done? Does my question make sense?
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Old 09-21-2008, 01:21 AM   #14
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Moondoggie: You're going to get a bunch of opinions on that last question. Tenderness depends on:
1. marbleing
2. aging ( and type of aging)
3. obviously, the grade of the cut

I was going to say you can't tell tenderness on the grill, but I cooked a Prime filet tonight on the grill and it squished like it was still blood rare when it actually was medium. (no, I don't like rare, never have). Sooooooooooooooo - maybe it depends on your butcher? If you want to get really technical about percentage of fat to muscle, % of moisture and other variables I'm sure someone more knowledgeable than myself may be able to answer your question.

Here in so cal most of the grocery store meat is "select" grade, right next to dog food grade, if you ask me. Even some of their "choice" leaves a lot to be desired. We get most of our meat from Costco and a little shop I know in Omaha. It's called Just Good Meat, and they ship cyropak.
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Old 09-21-2008, 08:38 AM   #15
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sparkly77 - If you're "down under", nows the time to get outside and light up the barby!!
Sure is! Shame I don't have a barby
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