Wednesday, 4 February 2015

Bovinae spinalis dorsi...let me count the ways

There is no doubting that cows are delicious, 
Haters be insane or at least highly suspicious.
They have a muscle that is ideal, 
For almost any spectacular meal.  
Worth cooking, that is,
Not some vegan crap or that tofu biz.
Chuck, shin or cheek are for stews and curries,
Ribs need no explainin' man, grill 'em, no worries.
Bones and off-cuts make for great stock,
Rump is so lean, you better fry in a wok.
Eye fillet is overrated, also know as the loin,
Sure it's tender, but costs plenty of coin.
There's tartare, Wellington or beef Stroganoff, 
But if you're looking for simplicity, you're much better off,
Grilling the tastiest, tenderest, muscle of the lot,
The spinalis dorsi is glorious, I'm kidding you not.
Spinalis, spinalis,
There is nothing good that rhymes with spinalis.
Maybe there is,
But this is getting tedious.

Yes, I know that was awful but the thought of beautiful animal flesh tends to turn me into a giddy schoolboy. I've never really been one for poetry - reading it and obviously not writing it. I figure if you've got something to say, just say it and dispense with the bullshit and flowery words.

Spinalis dorsi, also know as the rib eye cap, is without any doubt in my mind, the tastiest bit of the cow. Running down the spine of the animal, it doesn't do a lot of heavy lifting, so is beautifully tender, but also has great fat marbling, and therefore has outstanding flavour.

Boneless rib eye is called 'scotch fillet' in this part of the world. I don't know why, it just is. Only if it has a bone attached to it, is it called ribeye. Scotch is the only steak I'll bother with, either at home or eating out. While the larger eye fillet section is nice and tender, the outer rim that is the spinalis is riddled with fantasticness. 
Scotch fillet
separating the spinalis from the eye fillet
Sure, you can keep the two sections together, but I personally prefer cooking the spinalis a bit longer than the eye. Medium rare in both is ideal but that is tricky to achieve while they are connected. At least is is for me.

Kids usually get the fillet anyway - adults who earn the money to buy the spinalis dorsi, get to eat it.
ready for action
I'm a Heston fanboy, so I like to cook steak in a hot pan of fat, turning every 20 seconds or so - prodding with silicon tongs until the meat rebounds and tells me it is medium rarish. If I was expecting the Queen for dinner I might use a temperature probe, but she rarely visits these days.  

Of course resting the meat for at least 5 minutes after cooking is compulsory.
hot pan, careful not to crowd it.

yes, I do eat green stuff from time to time
Or rather, certain family members make me feel obliged to provide some green stuff. Fried in cow fat and topped with a dob of butter, of course.
the eye and spinalis meeting again to watch the golden sunset over the forest canopy