Standing in front of the meat counter at the grocery store looking at all the different types of meat can make you feel like you don't actually know anything about cooking. What's the difference between chuck and flank steak? Exactly what is a tenderloin, really? What's the best meat for stew or for pan frying? What's a good value?
The folks at RS Components have created an interactive online tool to help you out. The Ultimate Meat Eaters' Guide walks you through beef, pork, lamb, and chicken to look at all the different parts of the animal, the various cuts of meat that come from those parts, and how each is best cooked.
Easy to follow, the comprehensive tool is good for beginners and experienced home cooks alike. It clearly lays out the different kinds of animals used for meat consumption, and then offers tips and advice for each.
The guide walks you through the four types of meat, showing the different areas of the animal. You can click on the individual cuts and the guide outlines the different cuts and the best way to cut them. It also gives you a good recipe idea to get started with that particular cut.
With all the different cuts of beef, it's good to know what you're using the meat for. Some cuts, like flank steak, need to be marinated to help break down the connective tissue and create a tender and tasty piece of meat. Other cuts, like topside roasts, is tough so it needs to be cooked for a long time. A classic roast beef is a great recipe for a topside cut.
One of the leanest cuts on a pig is the leg, which makes it great for roasts. Bacon comes from the belly, as do spare ribs. Really, there's no bad tasting part of a pig, so you might want to try interesting different cuts like the Scotch fillet steak.
Not many people know about the health benefits of lamb. It is a great source of omega-3 fatty acids, as well as high quality protein and large amounts of B vitamins. Lamb is considered a "red meat" because it contains myoglobin, but it tends to have a lower fat content than beef. The neck and chump are some of the most economical parts.
Chicken cuts are fairly well-known and everyone has their own preference for white meat versus dark meat. But the guide points out some good ways to use the less-popular parts of the chicken for things like making your own chicken stock.
Check out the full infographic below and find the interactive tool here.