The ultimate guide to cutting and cooking meat

Click to play video: 'The ultimate guide to cutting and cooking meat' The ultimate guide to cutting and cooking meat
Chef Peter Sanagan shares his tips for choosing, cutting and cooking the best meat – Dec 4, 2020

Saving money at the grocery store is at the top of most shoppers’ minds and it can start with choosing the right meat options. 

Chef Peter Sanagan of Toronto recently joined The Morning Show to share his butcher’s guide for choosing, cutting and cooking meat. 

One way to save money at the grocery store is to buy a whole chicken instead of pre-cut portions, he said. 

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Sanagan said one of the main things to look out for when choosing the best chicken is the smell.  

“If it sits around too long in your fridge or on the butcher’s counter, it can get a little sour smelling. So that’s always the first sign. You want to make sure it smells nice and fresh,” he said.

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And while cutting a whole chicken can be intimidating for beginner cooks, Sanagan said his fast and easy method starts by removing the backbone and then cutting along the joints into even pieces. 

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He recommends looking for a pinkish-white quality to the meat as well as speaking to the butcher at your local grocery store to find out about the freshness and source of your food. 

When it comes to choosing the best cut of steak, Sanagan said there are a few options to choose from, including the ribeye, striploin, bavette, hanger and flat iron. 

“If you find a grocery store or butcher shop that has different varieties of steak, that to me is a good indicator that they really care about what they do,” he said. 

For primal steak options like the ribeye and striploin, Sanagan suggests looking for a rosy red colour and marbling in the meat. 

“I look for that intramuscular fat and what that tells me is that after I cook that steak up, whether it’s on the barbecue or the pan, that steak is going to be nice and juicy,” he said. 

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You can know when your steak is done cooking to your preference by using a thermometer or the finger test. 

Sanagan said the finger test is a simple restaurant technique where you place your index finger and thumb together while using your other hand to feel your palm below your thumb. 

As you press along the palm of your hand towards your pinky finger, the firmness is an indication of how well-done your steak will be and what the meat will feel like.   

For more tips on how to choose, cut and cook your meat, watch the full video above.

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