Braise you like I should

    Braising Easy Food

    What is braising?

    Braising is a cooking technique in which the main ingredient is browned in fat, then two-thirds covered in liquid and simmered in a covered pot over a low heat. It’s one of the best ways to prepare hearty, homely comfort food.

    Benefits of braising:

    1. Renders cheaper, tougher cuts of meat tender and flavourful
    2. Makes its own sauce or gravy.
    3. Most of the cooking time doesn’t require much attention – perfect for entertaining.
    4. One-pot cooking means minimal clean-up.
    5. Cuts down on waste: anything leftover can be reheated or frozen for another day

    What can I braise?

    Use tougher, less tender cuts of meat – a lean cut is a waste to braise and will be far less flavoursome.

    • Beef chuck
    • Beef, pork or lamb shoulder
    • Beef or pork cheeks
    • Beef brisket
    • Lamb shanks
    • Beef short ribs
    • Chicken legs and thighs, bones in
    • Root vegetables
    • Fruits like apples or pears (the sweetness goes well with pork)
    • Season the main ingredient with salt and black pepper.

    The braising process:

    1. Heat a few tablespoons of oil and/or butter in a heavy pan or casserole.
    2. Brown the outsides of the meat in the pan over a medium-high heat.
    3. Remove the meat and deglaze the pan by adding a little stock, juice, wine or other alcohol. Use a wooden spoon to scrape any sticky bits of meat from the bottom.
    4. Add the meat back in and cover two-thirds of the way with a cooking liquid, which can be water, stock, wine, juice or a combination.
    5. Cover and cook the meat over a low heat on the hob or in a low oven.
    6. Cook until completely tender. This can take from 1-6 hours, depending on what you’re cooking.
    7. Strain the meat and vegetables out of the liquid.
    8. Skim off any excess fat floating in the liquid, then reduce the sauce to desired thickness, or make gravy by adding a roux.