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why is my meat tough?

Discussion in 'General Dutch Oven Information' started by bjlc57, Mar 17, 2019.

  1. bjlc57

    bjlc57 Newbie

    I have a le Cresuet dutch oven.. for the past 18 years I would put my meat in this magic pan and it would FALL OFF the bone or you could cut it with a spoon .. but this past year.. all the meat is coming out tough.. including yesterdays corn beef which i cooked at 275 for about three hours and it was at 170 temp when i took it out.. the taste was great but the meat again was tough.. what is going on? please please help me.. this was covered in water.. I don't use a grate to put my food on.. I have used one in the past. .but this was what i saw on AMerica's test kitchen.. but other beef roast are tough tough tough. no more touch it and it falls apart.. has my pan gone bad?
  2. kruizer

    kruizer Smoking Fanatic

    170 is not hot enough to tenderize most tough cuts. It needs to be at least 200 degrees. That is a generalization but it is mostly true. you need to cook tough cuts longer.
  3. Agreed, I did a small corn beef point last night for hash this morning and only did a little water in the dutch oven with some onions and ran it at 260* for almost 6hrs to hit 205* and it probably could have went another hr and 5* more, but had 2 butts to pull... You can use them with a higher temp like 325* and get things done sooner, but the end temp and feel is whats going to make it fall apart regardless of what temp or time you use. As every bbq guy I've ever talked to has told me, the meats done when it's done, no 2 pieces cook the same and cook times are only guidelines.
  4. chef jimmyj

    chef jimmyj Epic Pitmaster Staff Member Moderator Group Lead OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Dutch Ovens don't go Bad, especially $200 to $400 LA Crusuet! There are hundreds of families still cooking in Great Grandma's Cast Iron Dutch Oven.
    As the guys above pointed out. The meat is not cooked enough. An IT of 170 is just Well Done, but no where near Falling Apart Tender. For Beef Pot Roast, or Corned Beef fork tender is typically 195 to 200°F. Fall Apart or Shread with a Spoon is 205 to 210°F...JJ
    wbf610 likes this.
  5. bjlc57

    bjlc57 Newbie

    okay but for the past year.. roast after roast after roast is tough.. in the past.. I would put the grid in the bottom of the dutch oven .. put in an inch of water and put a pack of onion soup mix over the top of the roast and it was to die for. and suddenly this past year or so.. they are all tough as shoe leather..
  6. bjlc57

    bjlc57 Newbie

    plus I thought that over temp was over cooking ..meaning the meat would get tougher and dried out..
  7. noboundaries

    noboundaries Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    The OP never says what "cut" of beef he's calling a beef roast. Could be that your beef supplier has changed their meat to a lower grade, but the temp is probably the real issue. Just about any cut of beef will fall apart tender if braised long enough.

    I use time as a general guideline, and I can't remember the last time I temped a braised chuck roast, brisket, tri tip, or corned beef. I go by probe tenderness only. I stovetop braised two corned brisket points today (St Paddy's Day) in a Dutch Oven. They weren't ready at 2hrs 45 minutes, were almost there at 3hrs 15 mins when I started adding the veggies. Fork tender at 3 hrs 40 minutes. I was ready for them to take 6 hours if needed. They were melt in your mouth juicy and tender when sliced across the grain. I have no idea of the grade of meat. They were commercial corned briskets I pre-soaked in water for four hours to de-salt, but I knew if you add heat long enough, they'd get tender.

    Overbraised meat will fall apart, not dry out, unless you keep cooking for hours and hours beyond the fork tender point.