The big picture I want my students to take from our meat unit is being able to choose the correct cooking method for each cut of meat. Knowing this has to do with knowing where the muscle is located on the animal and whether it is used for movement or not.
A project I enjoy that teaches this is making a life size steer diagram of the different primal cuts. (This guy turned out a little small. I had the students do a pig diagram as well because I have a big class this term.)
I project an image of a primal cut diagram on my board and trace the different parts. Each students is assigned a primal cut.
Their poster should include:
- Bold title of primal cut
- Landmarks, bones, or muscles included
- Fabricated cuts commonly made
- Recommended cooking method
- Three recipes that use the fabricated cuts (Titles only are sufficient)
This project pairs well with Modern Marvels: Butcher (currently unavailable through Amazon but I am able to get it with my Learn360 membership). Modern Marvels discusses how meat is inspected and regulated, equipment used, and different careers. In the future I would like to arrange for my students to visit a locker but this great documentary is as close as I can get in the meantime. It gives a true picture of what goes into meat production without too much gore.