Meat is one of our best sources of protein, vitamins and minerals but should be eaten no more than a couple of times a week due to its saturated fat content, which is higher than chicken or fish. There are many cuts of meat and even more ways to cook them!
Roasting and pan-frying are good for cuts such as fillet, sirloin or topside and meat on the bone cooks quicker and is tastier than that without. It is important to remember that the most tender cuts of meat are usually the most expensive and come from the least exercised part of the animal but these cuts also tend to have less flavour. Cuts such as chuck, brisket or shin are much cheaper but tougher also, and need long, slow cooking to tenderise and bring out the best flavour. Have a look at my recipe, Slow-cooked Beef Shin with Orange, inspired by Gordon Ramsay.
When choosing beef, it should be a purplish colour to show that it has been well hung, preferably 3 – 4 weeks, and the fat should be a firm, creamy white. Ageing the beef correctly means that the meat will be tender and more tasty. Good flavours and accompaniments for beef include garlic, horseradish, mustard, mushrooms, red wine and robust herbs such as rosemary and thyme.