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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Live_to_cooks Question on freezing a rib roast made me think. ( I do think sometimes)
At three dollars a # there is a very good chance that the meat you purchased is graded at the SELECT level, Just under choice # 2.Yes there are two grades of choice. My question to everyone is there are distinct ways to determine the grade that the USDA has graded your meat. This can be a little complex because unfortunately you can't believe everything you read on a portioned cut of beef.Some simple things to look for without getting to techy. Is the whiter the fat is a good indication of it's grade ,the whiter the better and the shade cream to yellow appear this indicates a lower grade of beef. Also the marbling is key .You want to be able to clearly see the marbling and again the whiter the better. The problem with store bought packaged beef ,already portioned is that you will not be able to see the USDA stamp,It is trimmed out.when I am not so tired I will come back with a little more detail. I thought some might want to know a little about the meat they purchase.
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Pork has a reputation for having the flavor influenced by the type of feed the producer used. I raised a pig once. We fed it corn, but in the end it didn't taste like we expected it to.

[This message has been edited by Katherine (edited 12-24-2000).]
 

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Feed makes a difference...grass fed beef taste really different than beef finished on grain. Likewise the pig I buy is so flavorful and wonderful that it leaves me wondering if the stuff in the store ever squeeeled.
 

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Thanks for the info Mikelm, I go through Cape often enough, I'll check out the hams.
Two years and mold huh??!!! Where did he store it? I wonder if my basement is suitable?
 

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i think many factors would influence what happens to meat. Most people who have seen cornfed chickens would confirm that in some animals, what the animal eats can even cause a colour change in the meat itself.

From what i know and have seen, animals would tend to vary due to some of the following:

Genetics
Feed type
Abbatoir handling
Age
Amount of exercise
stress levels

Feedlot beef seems to be better due to food given and the fact that the animals dont get much exercise. Obviously the more exercise a animals gets, the more tougher and leaner the musculature becomes. A good example of this is the legendary japanese "wagyu" cattle, the source for kobe beef.

These animals are so well looked after, they border on being spoilt. Some of the rumours about their rearing methods include: Daily massages and being fed a high carbohydrate diet (beer!). If you can get it do so.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
A Quilty grade for beef is a composite evaluation of factors that affect the palatability of meat. (tenderness,juiciness and flavor)These facrors include carcass maturity,firmness,texture and color of lean,and the amount ofmarbling in the lean.Beef carcass quitlty grading is based on 1 degree of marbling and 2 degrees of maturity
The marbling is the intermingling of fat in the lean. Graders evaluate the amount and distrabution of marbling in the ribeye muscle at the cut surface after the carcuss has been ripped between the 12th and 13th ribs.the degree of marbling is the primary way of determining a quility grade.
The degrees of marbling are divided into 100 subunits but in general they are done in tenths.In prime you have three levels Abundent moderatly abundent and slightly abundent in choice you have Moderate,modest and small in select you have slight and standard you have traces and pracitically devoid (stay away)! In addiction to marbling there are other ways to determan muscle quility,firmness proper color and texture good ribeyes will show a good amount of well dispersed marbling in a firm,fine textured,bright cherry-red colored leans the animal matures the characteristics of muscle change,and muscle color becomes darker and the texture becomes coarser.there is so much thats goes into grading beef that it's mind boggling!!!lets not start talking about Ossification. I'll be here for a week...
Like I said in my intial post look for how much marbling is in the lean.that is really the easyest way to determen the quility
cc
PS. I got this info from my main supplyer who has 45 years at hunts point

[This message has been edited by cape chef (edited 02-06-2001).]
 
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