Meat, including chicken and pork, is grinded to prepare a host of dishes such as sausages, meatballs, patties for chicken burgers, etc. Grinding meat yourself instead of purchasing ground meat from the market is recommended because freshly grinded meat at home produces much more flavored dishes. Grinding meat at home also gives you control over the density of the grinded meat, and you can easily choose between the fine and coarse texture of the grinded meat. There are many types of meat grinders, both manual and automatic meat grinder, available in the market. First, we need to know about the parts of a meat grinder before learning about the right way to use it.
Parts of a meat grinder
Pusher: Pusher is the part through which the pieces of meat are put into the grinder. The pusher directs the meat pieces down the feed tube. A tray can also be present on the pusher for storing meat pieces prior to putting them into the grinder. The tray enables a large number of pieces to grinded at a time.
Screw: Screw is the part of the grinder which pushes the meat pieces towards the blades.
Blades: The blades are cross-shaped, having sharp edges. They are the major parts that actually grind the meat.
Plate: The metal plate has holes through which the screw pushes the meat pieces while the blades grind them. The texture of the grinded meat depends upon the size of the holes cut into the plate.
Steps to using a meat grinder
Some basic steps to use a meat grinder have been listed here.
- The meat must be cut into thin pieces measuring about 1-2 inches. This is necessary to ensure that the meat pieces can be easily pushed inside the grinder.
- The meat pieces need to be wrapped in a baking sheet. Thereafter, they need to be covered using a plastic cover.
- The wrapped and covered meat pieces must be put in a freezer for 30-40 minutes. This is essential to make the meat pieces hard and cold so that they do not get stuck inside the grinder, especially when meat is full of fat. However, it is important to ensure that the meat is not frozen.
- The various parts of the grinder, such as blades and plate, must also be kept in the freezer to make the process of grinding easier.
- Feed the meat pieces into the grinder through the pusher. Ingredients such as herbs or spices can also be fed along with the meat pieces for grinding. In the case of a manual meat grinder, a crank handle needs to be operated by hand to grind while in case of an electric meat grinder, you switch on the machine after fixing all the attachments.
- A cold bowl needs to be put under the spout through which grinded meat comes out. You can also put ice in a bigger vessel and then put the collecting bowl in it. If there are many meat pieces to grind, they should be kept in ice to prevent the growth of bacteria.