beef stew

What Meat Should You Simmer?

These days, weather is pretty cold, isn’t it? Winter is in full swing and during this tough and freezing season, you may want to enjoy a good stew or simmered meal.

What is a simmered meal?

A simmer is a dish cooked or boiled very slowly. And we often use the word "braised". Why braised? Because in the past, we used to cook these meals in a pot, over embers. Today, we rarely use embers anymore, but the term has remained.

simmered beef roast in pot with carrots

What meat should we simmer?

It’s true that any meat can be slow-cooked, but there are some that MUST be simmered. This is the case for tough meats, that come from animal parts rather muscular and tendinous.

With beef, we mainly speak of the chuck, legs or shoulder, sometimes even the breast. These are parts that work all day and then, it’s very muscular. Therefore, it’s normal that we have to cook longer.

What happens during slow-cooking, with juice or sauce, is that the collagen that’s in the meat’s muscular tissues is gradually transformed into some kind of gelatin and thus allows the piece to be more tender, the more it simmers.

With pork, we would also find the pork roast, especially the pork shoulder roast. This is a part that’s very solicited and then very filamentous.

We can add osso buco and legs to this list, also very muscular. We have to cook for a few hours and slowly to get rid of tendons, but also get the meat fall off the bone easily. 

You’ll find stew cubes, whether from beef, pork, veal and even lamb. These pieces are generally from the shoulder, once again.

Finally, with lamb, you’d have to simmer the shanks as well as the leg roast. 

What can we simmer with?

In what apparel can we simmer the meat? The one that we talk about most is without a doubt the slow-cooker, or crockpot. The slow-cooker allows you to cook your meat for hours and hours with no supervision whatsoever, without even burning the dinner. It’s all about low fire.

And then, there’s the pot, or saucepan, or cooker that you have to put in the oven or on the stove, always at low heat. But unlike the slow-cooker, you cannot leave your pot without proper eyesight.





How do we know if the meat’s ready?

There is an easy trick to verify if your meat is ready or not. It’ll be ready when you’ll be able to flake it with a fork.

Here’s a little guide for slow-cooker cooking times:

simmer times table

Maillard, online butcher shop

It makes you wanna slow-cook a little stew, right? Don’t wait and order our tender meats perfect for simmering.

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