Beef Cooking Methods and Selecting Beef Cuts

Beef Cooking Methods and Selecting Beef Cuts

Grilling or Barbecuing Beef

The humble grill is an ancient cooking tool. For many years, grilling has brought people together to relax, cook and enjoy life alfresco.

Grilling means putting the food directly over the heat source — straight on the grill of your charcoal, gas or electric grill/BBQ. The high heat of grilling sears the surface of beef, creating tender meat with a flavourful crust. The key to a successful grill is to have fun! Keep your ingredients simple and fresh, and make sure you prepare before you start cooking.

It’s best to sear your meat quickly on both sides to start. After this, resist the urge to flip too often, as this will dry your food. Flip only once and avoid pricking your food to keep juices in.

Quick and easy, grilling is ideal for a variety of beef cuts, such as steaks, ribs, cubed for kabobs or minced for burgers. Beef’s flavour needs just a touch of salt and pepper. However, if you want to add a burst of flavour, marinate in wine and seasoning or add a spice rub just before grilling.

Broiling Beef

Broiling Beef

Broiling Beef

Broiling and grilling are very similar in that food is cooked directly with high heat. But broiling is usually done in an oven with overhead heat, while grilling is done outdoors by heating the food from below. Broiling is an easy way to cook a plump, juicy steak, especially if a grill is not available. If simply broiling steaks, season lightly, preheat the broiler to medium-high and place a drip tray underneath. Broil, turning and brushing with marinade or oil, until medium-rare or cooked as desired. A rotisserie that continually moves a large piece of meat produces the most even cooking.

The broiler unit in your oven also has a multitude of other uses. When roasting a piece of beef, dust with brown sugar or honey and turn on the boiler for the last 5–10 minutes to make a crisp, caramelised crust. Or finish a tenderloin under a hot broiler—delicious with a golden brown cheese crust melting into the tender meat, or a crisp breadcrumb and herb mixture.

Traditional Roast Beef

Traditional Roast Beef

Roasting Beef

Roasting is one of the easiest and most delicious ways to prepare Australian Beef. Roasting is a dry heat cooking method often used for large, tender beef cuts. The best cuts for roasting are obtained from the loin and the rib; however, there is a wide range of cuts suitable to roast. Choose either bone-in or boned cuts. Stuff them, marinate them, rub them with spices or simply put them in the oven.

Roasting Tips

Follow these easy steps for the perfect roast:

  • Heat oven to recommended temperature and weigh meat to estimate cooking time.
  • Place roast on a rack in a roasting pan. Pour a little water into the pan to stop juices from burning in the pan during cooking.
  • If you have a meat thermometer, insert it into the thickest part of the roast.
  • Cook for estimated time, basting with pan juices throughout cooking. As the water evaporates, add more to the pan.
  • Test to see if the roast is cooked to your liking by squeezing with tongs—rare feels soft, medium has a little resistance and well-done feels quite firm. When testing to see if meat is done, it’s best not to insert a skewer, as it allows the juices to escape.
  • Alternatively, check the internal temperature of the roast on the meat thermometer. Roast will be cooked to rare when the temperature reaches 45–50°C; medium when the temperature reaches 60–65°C and well-done when the temperature reaches 70–75°C.
  • Remove roast from pan and cover loosely with foil. Allow to rest for about 15–20 minutes before carving, as this allows the juices to settle. Well-rested meat won’t lose any juices onto the plate.
  • For the tenderest slices of meat, carve the roast across the grain. Holding the roast with tongs, rather than a fork, will prevent the juices from escaping.

 

 Suggested Roasting Times per 500 grams 
   

Oven Temp 

Rare 

Medium 

Well Done 

Beef roast cuts such as Rib, Rib Eye, Tri Tip, Tenderloin and Sirloin 

200°C

15–20 minutes 

20–25 minutes 

25–30 minutes 

 

Braised Beef

Braised Beef

Braising Beef

For melt-in-your-mouth, flavourful beef, braising is the ideal method. Braising brings an aromatic depth to beef. You can cook the whole meal in one dish and be creative with your seasoning. Sear meat in oil with vegetables and seasoning, then add enough liquid to cover and place in a moderate oven to braise until tender and richly flavoured. Beef is usually braised at 175–190°C, but you can also cook it long and slow at 120–150°C for a real comfort dish.

Stewed Beef

Stewed Beef

Stewing Beef

Stewing is one of the oldest methods for cooking a delicious, warm meal for your family. It’s easy and sends delightful aromas throughout the house. You can stew whole pieces of beef with creamy sauces, Italian-style tomato bases or light vegetable broths for just a short time. Or cubed beef surrounded in stock, wine, vegetables and seasoning for an hour or two for that soft, fall-off-the-bone texture and rich flavour. And stewing is great for traditional, Mediterranean and also Asian flavours such as a tagine. Stews are perfect for sinking into a bed of buttery mash, polenta, rice or pasta.

Sauté the meat in a pan to sear it with vegetables over a medium heat, add your chosen liquid and flavourings, reduce heat, cover and simmer on the stove top until meat is tender.

Pan Frying Beef

Pan Frying Beef

Pan-fry and Saute Beef

Pan-frying is a quick and low-fat method of using dry heat to cook thinner cuts of beef, especially tender steaks from the rib and the loin including the rib-eye, tenderloin, boneless top loin, Porterhouse, T-bone and top boneless sirloin.

Pan-Frying Tips

  • Steaks up to 2 cm thick are good for pan-frying, either whole or in pieces.
  • Preheat the pan to moderately hot. Use a pan that suits the number of pieces to be cooked. Oil the meat, not the pan.
  • Meat should sizzle when you add it to the pan. Keep the heat moderately high; this should be enough to keep the meat sizzling without burning.
  • Cook one side until the first sign of moisture appears on the upper side, turn and cook other side. Turn only once.
  • Test for doneness with tongs—rare is soft when pressed, medium is springy and well-done is very firm.
  • Allow the beef to rest for a couple of minutes before serving.
Stir-frying Beef

Stir-frying Beef

Stir-frying Beef

Stir-frying differs from pan-frying in that ingredients are usually cut into pieces or strips that are stirred to facilitate even cooking. It is simple and offers Australian Beef lovers the opportunity to experiment with many flavours and styles of cooking.

For a quick evening meal, stir-fry thin slices of beef for just a minute or two on high heat with seasonal vegetables, and finish with a splash of soy and sherry.

Stir-Frying Tips

  • If you’re slicing the pieces of beef yourself, remember to cut across the grain for maximum tenderness. Slicing across the grain shortens the long muscle fibres, making it more tender.
  • Prepare your ingredients before you heat your fry pan.
  • Cut all your ingredients into even-sized pieces so they all cook within the same time period.
  • The oil should sizzle when the meat hits the pan, otherwise the pan and oil are not hot enough.
  • Fry meat in small batches so that it browns and doesn’t stew in the accumulating juices.
  • Set meat aside and cook vegetables separately. Return meat to the pan with sauces once the vegetables are cooked.
  • Stir-fry only to combine—do not reheat meat for too long or it will toughen.

Selecting Beef Cuts

Some cuts of Australian Beef are better suited to particular cooking methods. Meat cooked with the bone in can be especially flavourful because it elicits the natural juices in the bone. Here are some suggestions to consider when planning a meal.

Pan Frying Beef

Pan Frying Beef

Pan-fry and Saute Beef

Pan-frying uses moderate heat to sear but not burn the meat, creating a flavourful browned crust. Cuts that are well suited to pan-frying are:

  • Fillet/Tenderloin Steak
  • Rib Eye/Scotch Fillet
  • Sirloin Steak/Porterhouse/New York Steak
  • T-Bone Steak
  • Rump Steak
  • Round Steak
  • Blade Steak
  • Oyster Blade Steak
  • Silverside Sandwich Steaks
  • Minced/Ground for Burgers

Stir-frying Beef

Stir-frying Beef

Stir-frying Beef

Stir-frying is similar to pan-frying but involves constant movement over high heat and usually includes vegetables or other ingredients along with the meat. The foundation of a great stir-fry is strips of meat cut across the grain into even thickness. They can be cut from:

  • Rib Eye/Scotch Fillet
  • Fillet/Tenderloin
  • Sirloin/Porterhouse/New York
  • Rump
  • Boneless Blade
  • Round
  • Oyster Blade
  • Topside Steaks

Braising

Braising usually involves searing the meat on high heat, then cooking it in a flavourful liquid. Less tender cuts are often prepared this way to produce rich flavour and tender texture. Examples of cuts well suited to braising are:

  • Chuck Steak
  • Blade Steak
  • Skirt

Grilling or Barbecuing Beef

Grilling or Barbecuing Beef

Grilling or Barbecuing Beef

Grilling and broiling are very similar in that food is cooked directly with high heat. Broiling is usually done in an oven with overhead heat, while grilling is done by heating the food from below. Grilling is generally done outdoors, although some modern kitchens include a benchtop grill with an exhaust system. Examples of cuts that are well suited to grilling or broiling are:

  • Fillet
  • Tenderloin Steak
  • Rib Eye
  • Scotch Fillet
  • Sirloin Steak
  • Porterhouse
  • T-Bone Steak
  • Rump Steak
  • Round Steak
  • Blade Steak
  • Oyster Blade Steak
  • Silverside Sandwich Steaks
 

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