Weird Marinades

This evening we had some jarret de boeuf that I’d subjected to an experimental marinade. It was very good, but the marinade may seem weird (I was surprised the actual marinade tasted fairly normal). The rationale about acidity and tenderising is on this website and I sort of riffed on their findings, or did I segue? At my age, should probably stick to academic English and write that I improvised, or made their marinade slightly more French…

My variation was juice of one orange and half a lemon as per above, teaspoon of low salt soy sauce, a fat clove of garlic, microplaned to puree and a good glass of blood black Cahors.

Because the research suggested that the marinade only penetrated a few mms I chopped the shin into chunks rather than leaving it as a rather splendid single 1 kg slab. Browned it prior to braising and the meat turned a rich black colour, three hours in a cast iron casserole at C160 fan and it was superb.


Without having read the full paper, I thought lemon/lime juice/rubs were well known as meat tenderisers?

Don’t disagree, and or course pineapple too, but these are usually with non-European chicken or pork dishes , whereas this was a take on boeuf bourguignon, where the beef is normally tenderised by being cooked in red wine rather than by being marinaded in citric fruit juice

I often use preserved lemons or slices of (frozen) Seville oranges when cooking white meat, but I’d never before tried this with beef - the imagined taste seems counter-intuitive but it wasn’t.

Our friends cooked the Christmas ham in full fat cola, have to admit it was tasty.

Orange goes well with beef.

Anything that can tenderise french beef :joy:

I use a instant pot for all my meat joints and chicken and never had a tough piece yet.

Hmm… I know my brain’s on the blink… but I’m lost with this… is this a special mixture or a special cooking utensil… ??

Our ‘standard’ marinades are:

  • steak - 7UP;
  • pork chops - honey/lime juice/colemans mustard/soy sauce;
  • gammon - coke, then glazed with black treacle ala Nigella Lawson;
  • beef joint - chopped tomatoes/chilli flakes/red wine/black pepper/pesto/
  • beef - soy sauce/vinegar

Explains why her ass is the size of Kent. :joy:


Alexa burn my husbands dinner, he’s down the pub again! :wink:

The best way of dealing with garlic is to cream it with the back of a round bladed knife and some salt.
This way it turns into a cream which dissolves into your cooking and nobody gets unpleasant chunks and it is not quite as brutal as microplaning.

I have a very fine small grater which works great with garlic and fresh ginger. It turns them into a very fine paste which dissolves when cooked.

I think the finest microplane effectively purées garlic and it’s only ‘brutal’ if you accidently microplane a fingertip.


That is an interesting idea, Mark. I haven’t read the paper but always up for a new recipe (preferably tried and tested by someone else!!)

I would normally simply use a garlic press, but a lot depends on whether I’m after a pre-cooking or post-cooking garlic flavour (garlic added at the start of near the end). When added near the end then I’m a lot more careful to ensure everything is finely divided with no lumps coming through.