Friday, January 1, 2010


In case you were not sure what to buy for your slow cooking stews, etc...  The beef cuts to buy are the cheaper ones. When looking for meat for your slow cooker, here are the cuts to look for:
Shanks  Shoulder  Round   Rump
Marbling, are the fat patterns in cuts of meat, although marbling is not wanted in lean cuts. This fat in the meat is desirable for the slow cooker.  So skip the expensive cuts. My experience is that they become dry in texture even when surrounded by moisture from the liquid added.  Fat is beneficial in the slow cooker.  You might say very necessary.

Stew cuts, chuck roasts, all work really well and give you a good texture and flavor for your recipe. If you find a round steak with little marbling at a good price, pass it by.  Its just a bad choice.

Since the slow cooker retains moisture within the pot, the meat comes out juicy and tender despite its less desirable cut. Slow cooking also allows beef to better absorb flavors from herbs and spices. 
A word about Chili.  
When cooking chili in a slow cooker, the flavors tend to be bolder so require less spices etc... Also slow cooker chili comes out thicker and heartier than cooking on a stove top.  
Chili can be reduced in calories by using ground turkey and the spices effectively hide any change in taste from beef. 

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