Apr 9, 2007

Cooking methods : Concentration vs Extraction

Do you know that cooking meat methods, as well as for other foods, can be divided into two categories : concentration and extraction ?. In fact, there is a third method which is actually a mixing of concentration and extraction.
Concentration refers to the process of forming a flavorful crust which locks juices in. Extraction draws juices out of the item. Roasting (rotir), sauteing (sauter) and grilling (griller) are all methods of cooking by concentration. Poaching (pocher), simmering (fremir) and boiling (boullir) are all methods of cooking by extraction. Braising (braiser) is a mixing of both.

Basically, first category cuts, tender meat like sirloin (aloyau), rib steak (entrecote) or red meat cuts are cooked by concentration whereas second and third categories, like brisket (poitrine) or shank (jarret) are cooked by extraction to tenderize the item.