How do i buy MEAT?

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trashie

Assistant Cook
Joined
Feb 14, 2004
Messages
1
Hi there..I have never purchased large portions of meat such as a roast or a tenderloin. Can i buy half a pork tenderloin? I'm not to good at this and always avoid the butcher because i dont' know what amount is what...i'm normally just cooking for me and one other person. THanks for any help.!!
 

scott123

Senior Cook
Joined
Feb 22, 2004
Messages
403
Location
USA,NewJersey
Pork tenderloins are not that big. I don't have one in front of me but I'd be surprised if a pork tenderloin weighed even a pound. You might be able to feed two people with one tenderloin, but I doubt it. In the supermarket I usually see 2 tenderloins together in a cryovac package.

Beef tenderloin, on the other hand, can be anwhere from about 5-8 lbs, although sometimes you can find tenderloin ends sealed in plastic. Whole loin of pork is in the 6-10 lb. range.

Pork tenderloin is the most tender, most expensive cut of pork. It's also generally fairly lean so it doesn't lend itself well to overcooking.

Pork loin is, imo, one of the hardest things to cook well. Even though it normally has a layer of fat around it, the inner meat is so lean, it's very hard to keep from getting tough/dry. I've seen people wrap the whole roast in bacon, and that helps, but I'd still recommend not roasting pork loin. Slice it into chops and then saute it. Or maybe bread it and fry it instead.

Most butchers I've met are more than happy to help you choose a suitable piece of meat and they'll often have instructions on how to cook it - as long as there's not a long line behind you :)
 

BubbaGourmet

Senior Cook
Joined
Dec 1, 2003
Messages
474
Location
Southeast NC
Scott gave you some good info but I will throw my two cents in. Typically, you will want to figure at least 1/4 to 1/2 lb of meat per person depending on appetite and waste (bone, fat, etc). Determine first what type of dish you want to cook as some cuts fare better when braised (cooked in small amounts of liquid) some when grilled or broiled (remember...a broiler is an upside-down grill) and some when roasted (cooked in high, dry heat).

Once you determine the cooking method you can then choose the meat. The US meat industries all have websites that will give you good info on the various cuts of meat.
 

LMJ

Senior Cook
Joined
Apr 4, 2004
Messages
216
Location
Kent, Ohio
I bought some whole pork loins a while back... And a whole beef sirloin.

So long as you've got the freezer space, it's a great thing. Cut them into steaks or roasts while raw, wrap them up tight in lots of plastic wrap, squeeze out the air, and tape down the flaps, then stick them in the freezer. They'll last for months up there (I just ate a 4 month old pork chop, yummy!).

You definitely need to study your cuts before you buy _any_ meat. That's a must for anyone!

The Cook's Thesaurus is a good place to start.
http://www.foodsubs.com/

A Google search combining terms like "beef", "chuck", "sirloin", "pin bone", "7-bone", "pork", "brisket" and the like should reveal more detailed sources.

But, if you eat a lot of meat, and have the freezer space... The cost savings are definitely worth it. Imagine prime sirloin steaks for $2.49/lb. You can fit some really good eats into a modest budget this way. :)
 

CucumberMan

Assistant Cook
Joined
Feb 18, 2004
Messages
21
Apropos pork, I was always wondering how come that Christians are allowed to eat it when God said it's an unclean animal? I don't get it, really.
 

LMJ

Senior Cook
Joined
Apr 4, 2004
Messages
216
Location
Kent, Ohio
Well, the theological answer would be that Christ's crucifixion and resurrection established a new covanent. Or somesuch. It's all rather abstract.

The historical reason is that it's a conversion religion, and pork's just too darn yummy! You're not going to convert any of 1st century Europe's pagans to your new religion if you tell them they have to give up pork. ;)

Ditto shellfish, which also aren't Kosher.
 

-DEADLY SUSHI-

Washing Up
Joined
Mar 9, 2004
Messages
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NW Chicago Burbs'
Saccrifices were done to attone for the sin people had done. It really was a sacrifice to do such a thing then. If you had a huge big honkin' sin you would use your BEST lamb. They were the best things to munch on then. Jesus is know as the Lamb of God. He was the ultimate sacrifice. When his was murdered, his death was a sacrifice to the world. He also began the new covenant. It said many new things to do... which is to lenthy to put here. But basically all the animals are here for us to munch on. And essenitally Jesus died for OUR sins with his sacrifice. So sacrificing animals was obsolete. Nothing could compare to Jesus's death. ;)
 

GB

Chief Eating Officer
Joined
Jul 14, 2004
Messages
25,510
Location
USA,Massachusetts
Don't be afraid to ask your butcher these questions too. Well the questions about meat, not about Jesus (unless you really want to ;) ).

Your butcher is a meat expert, or at least should be. He/she should be able to give you all sorts of great advice about how much you will need to buy, best ways to cook it, etc.
 

Bangbang

Executive Chef
Joined
Jul 17, 2004
Messages
3,150
Location
USA,Michigan
Deadly Sushi said:
Saccrifices were done to attone for the sin people had done. It really was a sacrifice to do such a thing then. If you had a huge big honkin' sin you would use your BEST lamb. They were the best things to munch on then. Jesus is know as the Lamb of God. He was the ultimate sacrifice. When his was murdered, his death was a sacrifice to the world. He also began the new covenant. It said many new things to do... which is to lenthy to put here. But basically all the animals are here for us to munch on. And essenitally Jesus died for OUR sins with his sacrifice. So sacrificing animals was obsolete. Nothing could compare to Jesus's death. ;)

I don't know about that. I think he was a hippy before his time. Great story though.
 

Konditor

Senior Cook
Joined
Sep 28, 2004
Messages
153
Location
Northeastern Seaboard
Beef pot roasts are some of the best buys. But, in order to transform them into delectable entrées, it is necessary to understand them in terms of economy & breadth of selection. The lowest priced pot roast cuts contain tough connective tissues; they cook best when simmered slowly with only 1 or 2 inches of liquid in a stovetop covered pan or roasted in a covered pan in the oven. The slow moist heat softens the connective tissues and renders the meat tastier & more tender.

Generally speaking, there are 3 categories of pot roasts: From the front end of the animal come the less-tender cuts – Chuck Short Rib, Blade, Brisket, & Cross Rib roasts. Often these roasts are formed from two or three muscles rolled together. Properly cut & cooked, these are your best value in pot roasts.

For entertaining meals, you may select higher-quality, costlier medium-tender cuts from the hip section: Rump, Sirloin Tip, Top Round, Bottom Round, and Eye-of-Round roasts. In the best butcher shops & supermarkets, these are medium-tender, single-piece cuts.

The lower-quality Shoulder & Boneless Briskets often contain tough & gristly pieces of meat. Blades & Short Ribs are much better buys. Always buy your pot roasts as lean as possible.
 

Lifter

Washing Up
Joined
Jun 26, 2004
Messages
1,018
Just to get back to the pork tenderloin for a minute, this is an excellent piece of meat in several recipes.

As to buying it, Ifind that our supermarkets price it really high, but we locally have a meat packing plant that caters to the area restaurants (as well as shipping to nearby USA restaurants) that also sells "retail"...

Since pork tenderloin is not often used in restaurants, they sell it at a price a lot lower than the grocers, and since they age their meat longer, its consistently better tasting...

Anyways, try this...

Take a pork tenderloin and brown it a few minutes in a pan, with olive oil, carefully just browning the outside...

Quickly wash 8-10 straw mushrooms, and pull their stems out...toss into the blender/food processer; peel and roughly chop three shallots and add to the blender; a couple tablespoons of fresh chopped garlic; an ounce or so of soya sauce and about 5 tablespoons of pork liver pate...

Okay, now turn on the blender/processer and render this into a sort of runny paste...

Get a package of frozen Phyllo Pastry and separate a piece about a foot square, spoon some of the "paste" in the shape of your tenderloin, set upon it your semi-seared pork tenderloin, and cover this with the balance of the paste...fold the Phyllo over and seal with melted margerine, beaten egg, etc

Place this in a baking dish and cook in the oven at 325 for about 25 minutes...

Sort of a "Pork Wellington"...

Lifter
 

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