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What is Beef?

Picture-of-beef-cattle-with-sky-behindBeef is the culinary name for meat, cut in various ways, from bovines, especially domesticated cattle. Beef can come from cows, bulls, heifers, or steers. Australia, South America, France, America, Belgium, Italy, Japan and the British Isles are all known for the high quality of their beef.

What makes great Beef?

The quality of beef varies with the age, breed, feeding and even the sex of the animal. Excellent animal husbandry and the freedom of beef cattle to roam and graze on lush natural grass pastures are essential in the production of top quality beef.

Beef should always be aged after slaughter to ensure it has matured sufficiently for the meat to reach the desired level of tenderness. At Meat No Veg our meat is aged for the optimum 28 days. This ageing process is known as hanging. Hanging at the right temperature and in the right environment allows time for the enzymes in the meat to break down the meat fibres and for the moisture in the meat to reduce. This concentrates the flavour, thus adding tenderness and flavour to the meat.

What to look for when buying beef?

Good quality beef should be a dull deep red rather than bright red in appearance. This darker colour indicates that the meat has been hung. It should contain some thin veins of white or slightly yellowy fat. The meat should have a slightly moist, shiny appearance and be firm and springy to the touch. The bone should be pink.

For more information on beef, look at our beef cuts section and our advice on cooking roast beef.