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How to tenderize meat

You may one day find yourself at a placement where there is a packet of meat in the freezer. While it may have a date on to say when it was frozen, you may not know how tender it is, or if your client will even be able to chew it.

Tenderizing meat is a method which not only makes the meat far softer, but it also enhances the flavor.

Additionally, tenderizing the meat locks in the juices and keeps the meat moist.

When you tenderize meat, you make small puncture holes in the connective tissue which allows the meat to absorb marinades easier.

Here are four ways to tenderize meat:

  • Marinate. This helps to break down enzymes and fibers in the meat. Ideally you should add an acid such as vinegar or lemon juice to aid the process.
  • Pound. This is an easy way to break down the fibers. You can either use the back of a knife or invest in a pounder, which looks like a small hammer with points on the surface which make holes in the meat.
  • Salt. Salting will help break down the protein. You can also use bicarbonate of soda. Simply rub either the salt or the bicarb into the meat and leave in the fridge overnight. Rinse well the following day before you cook.
  • Slow cook. Possibly the easiest way to get your meat soft is to slow cook it. Low and slow with seasoning, gravy and vegetables will give you a great evening meal for a cold night.

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