Tender meat

It appears Santa is bringing me a cooker for Christmas. I have read many recipes that state the steak, etc is so tender you could cut with a fork. (Not talking about the already tender steaks before a cook). Is this the case? Am thinking of a tri-tip or top round. Thanks

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Yes. It is achievable. In fact, it’s one of the things that I love about sous vide processing. Being able to cook a higher work muscle that would usually be used for a braise or stew, and having it better than the more expensive low use muscle normally served as steak because it has more flavour.

For your first cook i recommend you cook the tri-tip. Get one at least an inch thick, two inches thick if possible. A thicker steak will be more forgiving to any little errors in your technique and will give you more of the traditional steak experience. Round steak is a very big, solid piece of meat while the try-tip has more marbling and a more conventional steak shape.

For service slice it thinly with the grain, slightly on the bias. I know, that goes against everything you’ve been told about how to cut meat, but your lucky diners will be making that important last cut across the grain on their plates so they will experience the most tender bites of steak.

Be sure to keep a detailed record in a journal of all your SV cooking so you can replicate your successes and make future adjustments to the events needing improvement.

My best wishes for all the success possible.

Yes, you can definitely get it very tender with the magic of sous vide. Just as @chatnoir mentioned, it’s worth keeping notes for your cook.

Yes, I will keep notes about the cooks. If I slice thinly with the grain at 1/8 inch thick, and the diners cut a piece 1" x 2" it will be tough normally. If I cut at first 1/8" against the grain the piece will be thinner against the grain which will be more tender to the tooth. I am thinking about the normal cook on a BBQ or grill. Am I wrong? This is like beef jerky. Same effects. Besides, the slices should be more like 1/4" or much thicker for a dinner. This is not for sandwiches. Which would be perfect at 1/8 " or thinner slices. Please tell me if I am wrong. I love tri-tip. Thanks for the advice.

Have fun but remember that over cooking can also affect sous-vide cooking, it will never be burned but can turn into a mushy, marshmallow type of texture, is that what you are really looking for in a steak, even for tri tip or top round ?

There is a little learning curve regarding what you really like in terms of doneness and softness but it is definitely fun.

jbee, you’re correct, a 1/8" slice across the grain will be thinner and more tender because you have shortened the meat fibres.

I think you are not wrong although i’m not sure what is considered a normal cook on a BBQ. If you are cooking tri-tip on a grill do it hot and fast. Then slice thinly. Keep the top round as far away from the grill as possible unless you are serving cowboys.

You will be more satisfied employing SV for your trip-tip. Just barely sear it.