Week 4: Steak Cuts Explained
While there’s still a lot to explore about cuts of beef, how to prepare, and the health benefits per portion, this week wraps up our series of steak cuts explained...at least for now. We plan to continue updating our blog with information about Dutch Meadows products and practices, as well as continue to educate our customers and the general public about the importance of grass fed products, be it meat or dairy, free from artificial hormones, soy, and antibiotics.
Short ribs are a cut of beef taken from the brisket, chuck, plate, or rib areas of beef cattle. Check out the image below for a clear understanding of where these areas exist on cattle. If you’re a fan of pork, you may have had spare ribs, which are comparable but pork ribs typically have less meat on the bone. The short rib cut always consists of a short portion of the rib bone, which is covered by meat. The thickness of that meat can vary depending on your source. Cuts from grassfed cattle offer the most optimal flavor, especially when prepared in a crockpot or slow-roasted in the oven with the bone-in.
Skirt Steak is cut from the plate (highlated blue in the diagram below) and considered an excellent choice for those on a tighter budget. It’s a long, narrow, and flat steak. While less tender due to its density, this boneless steak is still extremely flavorful and quick and easy to prepare. If you would like to promote its tenderness, we recommend marinating and carving diagonally across the grain into thin slices.
We’re guessing you can make a fair assumption about where the oxtail comes from. Originally, this cut came strictly from the tail of an ox, but now the term is used if it comes from the tail of a cow of either sex. Once butchered into smaller portions, each section retains part of the tailbone with some marrow in the center, and a bony portion of meat surrounding that. While it’s not always a common choice seen on restaurant menus or even in the average household, this cut is extremely delicious and good for you. It requires a longer cooking time, which is why we often braise it and use it in soups or sauces, or slow roast it all on its own.
The Beef Shank is a portion from the leg. If you read any of our previous Steak Cut blog editions, you now know that any portion of the animal that moves regularly will make the meat tougher because that tissue is being worked, therefore the muscle strengthens, and the fat minimizes. The Shank can be prepared similar to the oxtail. While tougher and portioned smaller, it should NOT be passed up. The shank and oxtail both carry a lot of health benefits, especially with marrow as Dutch Meadows offers, and truly deliver an unforgettable mouthwatering dining experience when prepared slowly and simply.
Image By JoeSmack at English Wikipedia - Transferred from en.wikipedia to Commons by Themightyquill using CommonsHelper., Public Domain, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=4449251
If you’d like more information about our 100% grass fed beef products and beyond, don’t hesitate to contact us. We love hearing from you and making sure you’re 100% confident with your decision to support hard working, family-oriented farmers, independent businesses, and REAL food. Enjoy!