Most of us have been buying meat for a long time. A majority of the world today follows the non-vegetarian lifestyle, with people around the world consuming all sorts of meats and poultry, ranging from the harmless beef and chicken to some shocking things such as camel and shark. Meat is nothing new. However, many of us have never really formally learnt how to pick and choose the meat we eat. We go to the nearest butcher shop or the meat section in supermarkets and check the production and expiry date, but that’s all. Is that all there is to it? Is picking the meat that easy? Sadly, no it isn’t. There’s a lot more that should ideally be taken into consideration when picking meat or poultry of any kind.
Meat plays a major role in many of our diets. This is exactly why it’s so important to take the best kind and cut of meat and poultry that one can find (and obviously afford) at the best possible outlet. Besides that and this is common knowledge amongst meat eaters, the wrong kind or cut of meat can have a severe impact on one’s health, and it may even be deadly.
When you’re new to it, it can seem daunting albeit being an exciting and very confusing experience. So, if you’ve been buying meat your whole life, you’ve probably picked up a few tricks-of-the-trades, but if you haven’t, here are a few things you must remember as a buyer before you purchase meat. Where you purchase it from is of equally important, if not more.
Picture Credit: All the Images have been Curated from Licious
Where Do I Go?
There are only a few options, reliable ones that one can purchase any meat or poultry item from; you either pick it up from the local butchers, or you head over to the nearest market, or thanks to the World Wide Web; we have home delivery! Yes, you can actually buy meat online. There are objections some positives to each, but here’s the general gist of all these ways, and which would suit you the best.
- Butcher Shop
The butcher shop is one of best places that you could pick up meat from. There’s a lot of misconception and misunderstanding surrounding having a butcher since everyone is quick to assume that it’s going to be expensive and high-end when it’s quite the opposite. The most important reason you should purchase meat from the butcher is simply because you’ll know what you’re getting. You won’t get horse meat disguised as meatballs, and what not. Further, no part of the animal goes to waste at the butcher’s shop, and you’ll get tips and tricks along with new cooking techniques, and some cuts that you won’t find anywhere else. You’ll also be supporting a small-scale business, so it’s a win-win situation.
- Grocery/ Supermarket
This is the most common places of meat/poultry purchase and it couldn’t get worse than this. It is generally known for producing low-quality meats at lower prices in bulk, which automatically means you’re picking quantity over quality. Although the prices may seem in your favor, it can later turn out to be more expensive than you can imagine. Most importantly, you never know in what situation and surrounding the meat has been cut. The plastic packaging isn’t really hygienic or healthy, and the labels might be wrong. The freshness of meat is also questionable since expiry and production dates on meat are meaningless. So, albeit being the most popular and preferred method of purchasing meat and poultry, this one isn’t quite the best or the safest.
- Online Shopping
This has been all the rage lately. From shopping for fruits and vegetables to clothes, shoes, and handbags, online shopping has revolutionized India and given everyone the freedom to purchase whatever they want and have it delivered to their doorstep in a day or two. There are many reasons why you should pick online shopping over the others. Besides the obvious time and money you save, there’s the guarantee of fresh and authentic cuts, made in a hygienic manner that is delivered to you at the earliest possible. One such online outlet is; Licious. It’s revolutionizing the way in which people consume non-veg meat, and you should find out for yourself why!
What Do I Buy?
There are so many different kinds of meat; it can definitely get confusing as to which one you want. But in a broad category can be placed meat of three kinds; White Meat, Red Meat, Blue Meat, and Deli. You can have multiple subcategories in each; such as free range, and exotic kinds of meat. Here’s the general idea of each, and what you should look out for when buying it.
- Red Meat
The classic red meat, which is simply any meat that’s red when it’s uncooked, includes lamb, beef, mutton, pork, and all other meat. When buying red meat, the cut is of utmost importance. There can be your working cuts, which essentially come from the front part of the body, like the shoulder and leg. These are cheaper and require slow and long cooking, with strong marinade. Luxury cuts, on the other hand, comes from the ribs or the belly of the animal. They’re high priced and cooked fast over high flames, and they’re naturally flavorful. The most popular kind of luxury red meat is Kobe beef, priced very high.
Picture Credit: Licious
- White Meat
Any meat that’s white before it’s cooked is white meat; which includes chicken and other poultry. The best thing to opt for when going for white meat is buying the entire bid itself. Chicken, turkey, and other poultry are kept whole and sold, and you’re likely to save a ton of money and you can get a lot out of a whole chicken. However, if you absolutely have to, opt for the legs as they’re the best cuts you can get your hands on. Some pointers to remember when buying whole poultry are, the bones should be intact, the skin should be free of scarring and feathers, the breasts should be soft and supple, and there shouldn’t be any off odour.
Picture Credit: Licious
- Blue Meat
Blue meat points to fish and other marine food, and this is the trickiest of them all. It’s easy to pass of stale blue meat as fresh what with the shiny scales and what not. The identifying feature is that the flesh should bounce back when pressed, the eyes should be clear and shiny, and the tail should be moist and flat. If you’re buying fish with white meat, make sure it’s translucent and has a pinkish tint.
Picture Credit: Licious
- Deli Meat
This isn’t a kind of meat; so much as it is a way of consuming it. Deli meat simply means any meat that’s been cooked and prepared for sandwiches or other snacks. And they’re mostly classified into three types; processed, whole cut, or formed. Mortadella, sausages, and other kinds of rolled meat are usually sold as deli meat. The best you can do is opting for low sodium and low nitrates in your deli, besides avoiding it altogether.
Picture Credit: Licious
All kinds of meat; with the exception of Deli, can be free-range or organic, meaning that they weren’t farmed with the intention of butchering, but have had as natural growth as possible. Without any growth hormones, given complete freedom over grasslands and what not; this makes the meat tender and more delicious since the cattle isn’t under any stress or pressure, which can taint the flavour of the meat.
As is obvious, meat is a lot more complicated than one can imagine. You must keep in mind all of these things besides others, to make sure that all you eat is healthy and doesn’t do more harm than good. Licious is here to make sure that you get the freshest, most organic, and delicious meat delivered right to you, at the earliest. You have a multitude of options to choose from; including marinades! You’ll never have to worry about keeping a tab on your meat, and moreover, you get certified cuts and portions. Try out Licious for a great meat experience today; not to mention unbeatable prices and great weekend offers are waiting for you