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Meat...to rest, or not to rest?

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wryter2000 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Dec-17-05 04:27 PM
Original message
Meat...to rest, or not to rest?
I watched Jacques Pepin cook some thick lamb chops this morning. He insisted that you must rest meat before you cut into it. I know the whole thing about letting the juices settle back where they're supposed to be. But seriously, with a piece of meat that small, doesn't it get cold or cool? Esp. lamb, which is greasier than beef. I don't want to eat cold lamb.

I never let my roasts rest, and I'd for sure never let a steak or a chop rest. What does everyone here think?
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Warpy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Dec-17-05 04:53 PM
Response to Original message
1. The thicker the cut, the longer the resting period
Let me explain: meat cooks from the outside in. Timing a roast or thick chops for medium rare will get you meat that looks perfectly cooked, but the interior temperature won't have risen to quite the safe level. Giving the meat a 5-10 minute rest for thick chops and a 20 minute rest for roasts will retain the heat so that the center temperature will continue to rise while the outer portions, removed from the heat source, will not overcook.

Buy yourself one of those "instant" digital meat thermometers and try the experiment of testing the center of a thick chop when it comes out of the oven, then testing it 5-10 minutes later.

The cooling that occurs is minor surface cooling, only. The meat will be perfectly cooked when it is cut into. Cutting into it before the resting time will leave you with meat which may look OK, but which hasn't quite achieved a safe temperature at the very center and won't, once it's exposed to air.

The best idea is to purchase a meat thermometer and go by that.
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wryter2000 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Dec-17-05 04:56 PM
Response to Reply #1
2. I have a meat thermometer
I usually take the temperature at the center of the meat. I know it continues to cook after you take it out of the oven, too. I suppose I could take it out before it hits the ideal temperature in the center.
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Warpy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Dec-17-05 05:32 PM
Response to Reply #2
5. yeah, that's what chefs do
As I said, it prevents the outside from being overcooked while allowing the center to achieve the perfect temperature.
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Tab Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Dec-17-05 05:22 PM
Response to Original message
3. You do need to let meat rest
and it makes a hell of a difference.

However, whereas I might let a turkey rest 20+ minutes, I'm not going to let my london broil or lamb chop sit out for 20 minutes. Those would only get 5 minutes.

Particularly with smaller cuts, the clue I use is when they dump their juices. If you put a hot steak on a plate, let it sit for a few minutes (and the interior temp will rise, and finish cooking), the juices will redistribute and then they'll "dump" - some will pool on the plate. It's only about 5 minutes for a steak, the steak is still nice and hot, and it's far better.

A very good chef friend of mine used to make the meat sit for a few minutes and it drove me nuts because I was raised to get the stuff hot off the grill, but over the years I've learned he was right and my father was wrong (no surprise there, he liked his pork chops burnt to a crisp too), and the stuff is much tastier and juicier if you give it a few minutes.

That said, it's relative to the size of the portion. Small things (chops, steaks, etc.) just need a few minutes. Larger ones (roasts, whatever) are 10 to 30 minutes, depending on what it is and how big it is.

I don't know if there's any official "resting chart" anywhere, but I basically just let it cool and give it time to redistribute, and when the juices dump, it's usually ready.
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The empressof all Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Dec-17-05 05:25 PM
Response to Original message
4. Always rest most meats
Edited on Sat Dec-17-05 05:26 PM by The empressof all
I wouldn't worry too much about a burger or sausage...although a few minutes on a plate is not gonna hurt.

You absolutely will have a better finish with a roast, a steak or poultry if you let it rest prior to slicing it.

My advice it to try it....There is a difference...
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Stinky The Clown Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Dec-17-05 05:38 PM
Response to Original message
6. Always let your meat rest. But never let your meat loaf.
:::rimshot::::

Now take my wife ...... Please.

Okay, that's it for today with the clown crap.

Seriously, it really makes for a better eating experience if you allow meat to rest for some length of time before cutting it.

Time suggestions have been given by several already and they're spot on. The time is an inexact science. A few minutes for a thinner steak to 30 minutes for a huge roast.

Fowl benefits from resting as much as red meat does.
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OldLeftieLawyer Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Dec-17-05 09:30 PM
Response to Original message
7. In the interests of decency and ladylike restraint,
I shall refrain from pointing out that the proper phrase is "Schlong - don't let your meat loaf."

That would be wrong.

But, hell, yeah, you always have to let meats rest. It doesn't cool off in any significant way, and it really is juicier and tastier.
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mike_c Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Dec-17-05 09:35 PM
Response to Reply #7
8. "...ladylike restraint...."
:rofl:
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OldLeftieLawyer Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Dec-17-05 09:39 PM
Response to Reply #8
9. : : : glaring : : :
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NMDemDist2 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Dec-17-05 09:41 PM
Response to Reply #8
10. you took the words right outa my mouf
:evilgrin:
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Stinky The Clown Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Dec-17-05 09:56 PM
Response to Reply #8
11. I'm witcha, Mike
:rofl:
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GoneOffShore Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Dec-17-05 10:34 PM
Response to Original message
12. And here's a tip for cooking pork chops
from Mark Bitman - the guy who writes for the NYT.
Quick medium temp sear, then reduce the heat and tent the chops with foil. You'll get a much juicier and tender chop than if you cook them at high heat.
It's taken a while for this to sink in for me, but it wokrs.
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Tab Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Dec-18-05 01:26 AM
Response to Reply #12
13. "Searing" doesn't really do anything
People think it "seals in" the juices, but it doesn't.

It does caramelize the outside, which contributes to the flavor, but you can get that with just extended cooking.

I'll bet you an extended cooking time at medium heat would give you equal or better results, and more control over the finished product.
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wryter2000 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Dec-18-05 10:59 AM
Response to Original message
14. Okay, y'all convinced me
Next time I make a steak, I'll let it sit for a minute or two. I'll reduce the cooking time a bit, though, as overcooking a nice piece of beef makes me :mad:
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