(like the fats) in various ways to produce even more resulting molecules. Amongst the
molecules produced are the melanoidins – these are coloured and help contribute to the
brown colour of cooked meats. It is the large combination of all these different molecules that
gives the cooked meat its brown colour, taste and smell. The final taste perceived with a piece
of cooked meat depends on the profile of all the different molecules produced, and their
concentrations. For example, the aroma of roast beef contains over 600 component
molecules. In general, the Maillard reaction occurs most rapidly at approximately 150-250 °C,
but if there is a high concentration of sugars and amino acids, then it will occur at lower
4) Temperature higher than 65°C are needed to totally melt the fat during cooking that lubricates
the muscle fibres, keeping the meat moist.
So meat which is cooked at 65°C to maximise the juiciness, has associated effects that may not be
favourable. The meat will have an elevated bacterial risk, less taste due to reduced Maillard reactions,
and less fat lubrication. It will also remain fairly tough after cooking if it had a high original collagen
Quick high temperature cooking
Meat cooked at very high temperatures will have a lower bacterial risk, more fat lubrication, better
collagen breakdown, more taste; but will rapidly become tough and dry is cooking time is long.
A compromise: Often, the best compromise is too cook the meat at a very high temperature, for a very
short time (to ensure bacteria are killed and that Maillard reactions can occur), and if it is a large cut of
meat to finish the cooking in a very low temperature oven.
Finally, there is not one sole recommended technique for cooking all meats, like for eggs of
vegetables, because different cuts of meat differ greatly in their structure and tissue composition, and
thus different pieces of meats are suitable to different cooking techniques.
· The old tough cuts: Old, tougher cuts of meat that are high in collagen need to be cooked for