Understanding the different cuts of beef can be a little confusing. Not only do they have different names in different countries, but the butcher around the corner will call his cut by a different name too!
The forequarter is divided into the chuck, rib, fore shank, brisket and plate. The most economical way of buying beef, lamb or veal is purchasing the whole forequarter and having your butcher cut it into the various cuts to suit your needs.
Although very tasty, the meat in the neck is made up mostly of connective tissue, bone and fat. It can either be cubed or minced and the bones used for the stock pot.
This contains the meaty portions on the top of first few ribs and consists of several muscle layers running in different directions. So you thought only we were confused – so is the poor animal! This makes a wonderful pot roast or moist, slow-cooked oven roast.
RAISON RIB ROAST
This is a chuck roast off the bone. It makes a delicious, tender roast that benefits from slow, wet cooking methods like stewing, braising or pot-roasting.
Now this is an interesting cut, which some say isn't actually a formal cut, but rather a method of preparation! However, this is the cut that has been commonly accepted as 'LondonBroil'. I call it 'forever loyal' because it is always soft and tender.
This is a very lean roast, off the bone, used by most butchers to make rare roast beef for their deli section. Most chefs would say that this heavily exercised muscle should be braised or cooked in liquid, however if dry roasted and thinly sliced, it makes a wonderful rare roast.
ROUND BOLO / MOCK TENDER
If wet aged (vacuum packed in the refrigerator) for seven to ten days this makes a wonderful roast for three or four people. It's a small, very lean cut that can also be used for minute steaks and stroganoff, or cubed for stews, steak pies and curries. It really is a very versatile cut. One of my favourites!
SIDE BOLO STEAK/OYSTER STEAK/BONELESS BLADE STEAK
This is a very tender cut of meat that can be sliced vertically and cooked as steaks or cubed for kebabs/sosaties. This is quite a thick piece of meat about 3 - 4cm thick, so when making steaks with it, I cut it half horizontally through the middle along the white sinew line so that each steak is now only 1 ½ - 2cm thick. This way you don't have the sinew running through the middle of the steak or meat.
BLADE STEAK/7-BONE STEAK/AMERICAN BEEF CHOP
This steak has a bone in it and makes a very tender, tasty variation to a lamb chop (for those who prefer beef). It gets its name from the bone, which is shaped like the number seven.
One thing that breaks my heart is when customers request roasts with 'no fat'. Rather roast the meat with the fat on to keep it moist, tasty and succulent, then if it hasn't all rendered, removed afterwards!
STANDING RIB ROAST OR PRIME RIB ROAST
It is in this section of the ribs that the tender Scotch fillet or rib-eye muscle is housed. While still attached to the rib tones it is called a standing rib roast and makes a wonderful impression as it stands arched firmly on its flat-boned base. This roast can also be French-trimmed, where all the meat and fat are removed along the length of the bone tips for that extra-clean look.
SCOTCH FILLET OR RIB-EYE ROAST
The rib-eye muscle or meat removed from these ribs is known as the Scotch fillet or rib-eye roast. It is a boneless roast that can be roasted whole or cut into Scotch fillet or rib-eye steaks. The steaks cut on the bone are knwn as T-bones.
The ribs from which the Scotch fillet is removed are used to make those lovely marinated or smoked steakhouse ribs or they can be cut shorter.
This is one of my favourite cuts of meat. It is rather a small rib roast (should feed about four people) with a thick layer of lean beef that can easily be carved on or off the bone. I use this sliced, for my tzimmes, rather than brisket.
This wonderful piece of meat, when cross cut into slices, makes the best osso bucco in town. It houses the famous marrow bones, which are delicious in soups and stews. The collagen in the meat turns to a soft gelatine while cooking, which keeps the meat soft and tender. It makes wonderful soup meat as well and, once cooked, can be minced for your 'perogen'
This is a boneless, rather fatty roast (see why I like hump!) from the breast of the cow. This cut is usually pickled and boiled for hours to be used in one of its famous dishes as 'hot beef on rye' or 'corned beef' as some prefer to call it. Apparently it got the name 'corned beef' because the Irish practice was to cure it with corn-sized grains of salt – probably like our kashering salt! It also makes wonderful deli pastrami and smoked brisket cold cuts.
ROLL OF BEEF
A roll of beef is normally a piece of brisket rolled, tied and roasted with string to keep its shape. However, any flat piece of meat can be rolled for roasting, including deboned lamb or veal.
This small area, limited because we only go up to the 10th rib, contains some ribs and flank which is wonderful for cholent and stews. The rest of the meat in this area is used for mince, polonies and sausages.
Our beef products include:
Scotch Fillet Steak / Rib Steak
Beef Ribs (smoked / marinated)
Scotch Fillet Roast
Top Rib Roast
Roll of Beef
Raisen Rib Roast
First Rib on Bone
Goulash / Cubed Steak
Brisket on Bone