Meat Tenderising Tips 101
There are few things less appealing than biting into a chewy piece of steak, and now that we are at the peak of braai season, there is simply no excuse to settle for tough pieces of meat, especially with the tenderising tips we are about to share with you.
Because we may need to heat up the braai at a moment's notice, below are meat tenderising methods that do not require overnight marinating.
Beating down pieces of meat, especially tough cuts, is a quick and effective way to tenderise it. The downside is that if you overly tenderise, your meat could turn out too thin. A good tip and perfect braai investment are special tenderising tools that come with spikes that can pierce into the meat, just enough not to damage the delicate meat fibres.
Make use of acids
Marinading your meat using acidic ingredients is ideal for breaking down tough protein fibres. Try leaving your meat in a marinade made with vinegar, buttermilk, plain yoghurt or lemon. Tip: Do not leave your meat marinating for too long as the acids can weaken the protein fibres too much, leaving the meat too soft, especially for braaiing. Try to marinade your meat while you are getting your braai started for about 30 minutes.
Any braai master will tell you that seasoning is the key to a perfect braai. Aside from adding flavour, adding enough salt, especially tough cuts of meat, and letting it marinate for around two hours, is a great way to break down protein fibres.
When you are ready to cook, rinse off some of the salt, pat the meat try with a paper towel and get started with your braai.
Slow-cook your meat
Cooking meat using low heat over a longer time frame is an old-age tip to getting succulent pieces. However, if you have time to spare, try slow-cooking or braising tough pieces of meat until it is half done, then add it to the braai. This method will help break down tough fibres, connective tissues and collagen that adds to the toughness of meats.