Ground meat

Discussion in 'Food & Cooking' started by koukouvagia, Jan 24, 2010.

  1. koukouvagia

    koukouvagia

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    Do you buy ground meat at the supermarket? Or do you grind it yourself? I've often bought it in the market with no problems but I hear so many stories about ground meat that I'm thinking about grinding it myself.
     
  2. phatch

    phatch Moderator Staff Member

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    It depends what I'm doing with it. If I want to control grind size or fat content or doneness, I grind it myself.

    But for many things, I just buy the pre-ground at the store.
     
  3. thegardenguru

    thegardenguru

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    A third option -- my preference -- is to have the butcher grind it for you.

    I'll pick any meat, or combination of meats, from the case or even packaged and ask them to grind it fine, medium, coarse or some such.

    I have my grandmother's old-time meat grinder. But I use it only for what she used it for -- grinding dried figs and such for baking.

    Joe
     
  4. kyheirloomer

    kyheirloomer

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    I usually grind my own, both for the reasons Phil gave and because, as a hunter, there are meats I want ground that aren't available any other way.

    Anybody into making their own sausages should definately be grinding their own.
     
  5. maryb

    maryb

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    I buy 1/4 of beef once a year and it includes ground. Processed locally though and I know the guy who does it. His place is spotless and I have no issues eating the meat rare or even raw.
     
  6. rpmcmurphy

    rpmcmurphy

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    50/50 for me. It depends really. but it's leaning more towards 80/20 of me grinding my own...

    I'm pretty picky about the size of my grind, so I like to grind myself for burgers and chili. meatballs and meatloaf I can by store-ground.

    also, sometimes it comes down to just me grinding leftovers of somethign I butchered, like turkey, or a beef tenderloin or something.
     
  7. koukouvagia

    koukouvagia

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    Is it a messy job to grind? Should I invest in one of those grinders for my kitchenaid stand mixer?
     
  8. kyheirloomer

    kyheirloomer

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    Like anything else, Koukouvagia, the mess is more in the clean-up. When done, you'll have the housing, the worm, the blade, and the die plate, all coated with a sort of meat smear, that have to be washed and dried.

    Grinding is basically easy. Cut the product small enough to feed through the hopper, Feed it into the worm. And ground stuff comes out through the die. Make sure you have a bowl under it to catch the ground food.

    I happen to use a stand-alone grinder. But the principle is the same, and there's no reason to buy one of them when you can fit your KA with the grinding attachment. From what I've heard, mechanically they work just fine.

    One caveat: I'm not directly familiar with the KA grinder, so don't know. Does it come with a selection of die plates? Those are what control the size of the grind, and you need at least two (fine and medium) for most jobs, and a third, course grind plate, for sausage making.
     
  9. kyheirloomer

    kyheirloomer

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    BTW, there are manual grinders available, both new and used. Their advantage is price, of course. And the fact there is never any danger of overheating the product.

    You might consider starting with one of those. Then, if you think you'll continue grinding your own, progress to a power unit.
     
  10. shelta

    shelta

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    Really depends on the market, we buy ground meat from only one of two markets, others I wouldn't touch.
    We've ground meat at home but not recently as seems like too much effort if you have access to a good reliable market.
     
  11. phatch

    phatch Moderator Staff Member

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    The kitchenaid add on is OK. I've got it. I'm not thrilled with the feed tube but it does the job and isn't hard to clean.

    Does a decent job of stuffing sausage which is a bonus.

    You need to clean the plates after about every 2 pounds on the initial grind as they start to retain silverskin and such. This is good as you don't want it in your sausage but it does start to clog up the system.

    I've started doing most of my sausage in 2 pound increments...
     
  12. kyheirloomer

    kyheirloomer

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    Been my experience that the silverskin/tendon build up is a problem in any but commecial grade units. So Phil's advice holds true pretty much for any home grinder.
     
  13. chef21

    chef21

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    I always buy it ground from the market, I have never had any problems with it at all. In fact, I love making thick and juicy burgers with it! :)