With the cost-of-living crisis biting and more people looking to make ends meet, the popularity of browning meat is surging. It seems everyone and their dog is looking to get in on the craze – quite literally.
That’s where this post can help. We take a look at everything you need to know about this versatile cooking method and how to make a success of it. Remember, browned meat is often half to a third of the cost of premium cuts.
What Is Browned Meat?
But first, what exactly do we mean by browned meat? In most of the world, it’s not a specific cut of meat, but rather a cooking technique that involves searing or roasting meat at high temperatures until it forms a brown crust.
The cooking process develops various chemicals in the meat’s crust, delivering an incredible flavor loved by people across the world. The technical name for this chemical process is the Maillard reaction. It occurs when sugars and amino acids and sugars in the meat react with the heat, creating dozens of flavors that give the meat its distinctive color and taste.
Why Make Browned Meat?
The benefits of cooking with brown meat are considerable. For instance:-
- It makes it easy to add flavor and spices to your dishes, soups, sauces, and gravies
- It adds a contrast of textures between the tender meat inside and the crispy crust, giving it a different sensation from regular roasted or boiled meat
- The crust helps to retain more of the meat’s moisture, keeping it juicy and tender
- It reduces cooking time and energy consumption because browning meat is often exposed to high temperatures that occur over a short period
How To Make Browned Meat
Whether it’s a baked chicken thigh recipe or chargrilled beef, making meat brown is actually a heck of a lot simpler than you think. All you need is a skillet, some oil, and seasoning. That’s it.
Here’s the process:-
- Preheat your oven if roasting to around 375°F
- Season your meat with salt and pepper on both sides
- Add some fat to your pan, either lard, butter, or vegetable oil. (Only use oils and fats with appropriate smoke points).
- Cook the meat for several minutes on each side if in the pan, or for around 20 to 30 if in the oven. The meat shouldn’t be too thick. If it is, it may brown on the outside but not cook on the inside. Always use a meat thermometer to check the meat’s internal temperature is sufficient, around 150°F to 165°F for most meats
- Transfer your browned meat to a cutting board or plate and let it rest for around 15 minutes before serving
You can add browned meat to plenty of exciting dishes. For instance, browned beef chunks can be a great way to improve your beef casseroles. You can also use brown chicken thighs to make a delicious curry or pie. Browned lamb shanks tend to work well with sticky sauces or Moroccan tagine-style flavors.
This is a contributed post