Mince meat is referred to as the meat in mince or ground form. Mince meat can be prepared with any kind of meat such as pork, lamb, beef or chicken. Mince meat dishes are quiet popular in culinary world as it is used to make various snacks, side dishes as well as main dishes. The texture of mince meat depends upon the requirement of the dish. Some mince meat recipes call for finely minced meat where as some require coarse mince meat. In almost all households where meat is a staple, mince meat dishes are commonly cooked. Some of the mince meat dishes are lamb kebabs, mince pie, and meat loaf.
History of Mince Meat
Though there is no strong evidence present about the history and origin of mince meat it is believed that people in England have introduced the mince meat, 500 years ago. According to them, it is the best way of meat preservation without smoking and without any salt or preservative. In England, still mince pie is a popular traditional dish at the time of holidays.
Culinary Use of Mince Meat
Mince meat has similar culinary uses like any kind of whole meat. It can either be shaped in form of balls or can be added to any baked dish. Soups and stew dishes often include mince meat in the form of fried balls. Mince meat is fondly used for stuffing purposes such as in dumplings, patties, tacos and sandwiches. Various baked casserole dishes including layers of potato and bread are widely made with mince meat. Pies and even muffins are very popular mince meat dishes. Ground meat has a very special place in making meatloaves and meat puddings.
Popular Mince Meat Recipes
Mince meat is a very popular and relatively easy and quick-cooking form of meat across the world. Here are some of the most popular mince meat recipes:
• Moussaka – It is the most popular Greek mince meat dish. Usually, it includes eggplant, tomato pure and mince meat.
• Mutton seekh kebab – It’s a very popular dish of Indian and Pakistani cuisine. Seekh kebab includes mince mutton mixed with spices. Meat mixture is then put on ‘seekh’ means ‘skewers’, and grilled.
• Mince and tatties – It is a Scottish dish containing mince beef with potatoes in boiled and mashed form.
• Steak tartare – In this French Dish, ground beef is used.
Cuisines Commonly Making Mince Meat Dishes
In the cuisine of England, mince meat is popularly used in making meat pie, which is a traditional dish there. Hamburger is one of the most commonly prepared mince meat dishes in Britain. Midwestern cuisine is also famous for making mince meatloaves, sloppy joes and stuffed tacos. In Indian, Pakistani as well as in Middle Eastern cuisines, mince meat is an integral part in cooking kebabs and kofta curry and ground meat is commonly known as ‘keema’.
In Spanish cuisine, ground beef dishes are quiet popular and mince beef is called ‘picadillo’. French, Latin American and Belgian cuisines also make various mince meat dishes with some variations.
Preferred Methods of Making Mince Meat Dishes
• Baked – Most common method of making mince meat dishes is to bake them. Meatloaves, meat puddings, pies and casseroles are some mince meat recipes. Lasagna is also a popular baked mince meat dish.
• Fried – Mince meat balls are often fried and added to gravies or stews. Kofta curry is the best example for fried mince meat.
• Stuffed – Mince meat is an ideal option for stuffing tacos, patties and sandwiches.
• Boiled – Meatballs are often added to soups and stew and boiled until cooked.
• Grilled – Grilling is also one of the most common methods of making mince meat dishes such as kebabs and koftas.
Nutritive Value of Mince Meat
The nutritive value of mince meat is similar to that of the whole meat. Mince meat is highly rich in proteins. It also contains amino acid that is helpful in muscle tissues and enhances the overall development of body. Beef, pork and lamb meats are high in fats and calories but if lean meat portion is used to make mince meat then the fat content is reduced.
Consumption Criteria of Mince Meat
Mince meat made up of beef, pork and lamb is considered unhealthy for people suffering from cardiovascular disease as it has high fat content that increase cholesterol level.
Ingredients Related to Mince Meat
Mince meat or minced meat is often confused with ‘Mincemeat’, which is an altogether different ingredient but only have similar name. Mincemeat is usually made by mixing chopped nuts with brandy or other distilled spirits with some spices. It’s a traditional dish, served at the time of Christmas and Thanksgiving parties.
Buying and Storing of Mince Meat
Like whole meat, mince meat is a highly perishable item if not treated well. It is always recommended to buy freshly minced meat. If buying packaged mince meat then it is better to check the packing date on the wrapper. At the time of purchase the flesh should be fresh and pink in color.
Proper storage of mince meat is really necessary. Here are few points that should be kept in mind while storing mince meat and mince meat dishes:
• Mince meat should be wrapped in plastic sheet and stored in the coolest part of refrigerator.
• Best way to store mince meat is to make patties and keep them in the freezer.
• Freeze mince meat can be stored for up to 4-5 weeks.
• Cooked mince meat dishes can be stored in refrigerator for up to 2 days.
Types of Mince Meat
• Beef mince – This type of mince meat is obtained from the flesh of cattle. It is one of the most widely used mince meat in global cuisine.
• Pork mince – Mince meat obtained from pig flesh is called pork mince.
• Lamb mince – When flesh of goat or sheep is grounded then it is called lamb mince.
• Chicken mince – Chicken meat is grounded to make chicken mince and it is a very lean mince meat.
Mince Meat Trivia
• The most popular mince meat dish consumed by Americans is Hamburger.
• Minced beef has a history dating back to medieval times of Russia.