Monday, March 21, 2011
USDA Beef Grades- You see a good-looking steak at the grocery store... but what will the quality be after it's grilled? The USDA meat grades can help us out.
The three top grades are:
Excellent quality and flavor, tender and juicy, good distribution of fat throughout the lean meat. Less than 2% of all the beef in the U.S. is graded prime.
Very good quality. A popular grade because it combines a moderate amount of fat with good eating quality. Higher end grocery stores sell this grade.
Good quality. A tender beef with a high ratio of lean to fat. Not as tender as choice grade. Found in the usual grocery store.
Hint- You can be reasonably sure of high-quality beef when the lean meat is light red, velvety appearing, and liberally marked with fat. The bones should be red and the fat will be flaky and light colored.
For questions about choosing quality meat ask the butcher at the grocery store meat counter or your local butcher shop.