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What Is Pork Rose Meat?

When it comes to cooking, experimenting can be both scary and exciting. Using an ingredient you are not used to can feel risky, but in many cases risks can turn into rewards (think fatback, skins, chitlins, marrow, stomach, jowl, neck bones, etc). This is often the case for those who decide to cook pork rose meat for the first time.

In the United States, Pork Rose meat is not as common as some other cuts of meat that come from pork, such as shank, shoulder, flank, or loin, but it is still a delicious source of protein if it is prepared properly.

Some countries, such as Mexico, actually use pork rose meat fairly often in various dishes, and it is flavorful, tender, and delicious when it is properly prepared. In most cases, it is actually less expensive than other cuts of pork (like ranchera). But you may wonder, “What is pork rose meat?”

What is Pork Rose Meat?

Pork Rose

Pork rose meat is a light red or “rose” color, and is cut that is away from a muscle that extends between the chuck and flank of a pig, or between the leg and stomach.

A similar cut of meat can be found on beef as well, but both can be hard to find in an average grocery store. It may be at your local butcher shop, or you may need to find a Hispanic meat market to find this particular cut of meat.

If you do find pork rose meat, there is no need to be concerned because it is not a cut of meat that you are used to. You will just need to take the time to prepare the meat properly, and you will be in for a delicious treat.

What to Expect From Pork Rose Meat

If you go to a butcher shop, there will likely be more variety when it comes to cuts of meat that are not typical, such as pork rose meat. If there is a Hispanic Meat Market in your area, this may also be a good place to find this particular cut of meat to try. 

Because it is not as well known, this cut of meat is often less expensive, as many people may shy away from things they are not familiar with. The appearance of pork rose meat may be quite different from what you are used to when you are shopping for pork.

Instead of hearty-looking chops or roasts, you’ll find that pork rose meat is normally sliced thin, and it is often veiny. However, the veins are light and it has minimal effect on the cooked meat when it is eaten.

Pork rose meat is less expensive than many other cuts of pork, and is a common ingredient in Mexican dishes, including tacos and enchiladas or other dishes where the meat serves as a filling.

If you are planning to serve Mexican dishes, using pork rose meat will add an extra element of authenticity to your meal.

Preparing Pork Rose Meat

Pork rose meat will taste the best if proper care is taken in preparing it.  This means marinating the meat for 24 hours before cooking it. It also means you will need to plan ahead and serve something else for dinner even after you have picked up the meat. 

A variety of seasonings, oils, or sauces may be used in the marinade, depending on the flavor you want in your cooked meat. A large plastic bag is perfect for allowing your meat to soak up the flavor of your marinade.

Most of the time, rose meat is cut thin and will start to fall apart as it is cooking. In order to be safe to eat, it should be cooked to 145 degrees Fahrenheit. This usually takes between 5-15 minutes when cooked in a pan on the stove.

The meat will not continue to be pink or rose-colored after it is done. Often, other ingredients are added to the meat in order to contribute to the complex flavor of the dish. This may include onions, various peppers, other vegetables, and other ingredients.

You can stick with traditional Mexican recipes that call for pork rose meat or saudero, as it is sometimes referred to in recipes. You can also experiment with using the meat in other types of recipes, or even create fusion recipes that blend different cultures.

You can also use it in recipes that typically call for ground beef for a more flavorful alternative, such as chili or sloppy joes.

The longer meat sits in the flavors and spices, the more favorable the meat will become. Because of this dishes made with pork rose meat often taste even better the next day. 

Rose Meat Comes in Beef Too

While rose meat is more common in pork, you can find a lot of similar qualities in beef rose meat, that comes from a similar area on a cow. Both pork rose meat and beef rose meat offers a melt-in-your-mouth type of texture and flavor when they are given the proper chance to soak up the flavor of their marinade.

If you are expecting something similar to a steak or a chop, you will not get that. There is more flakiness, but it is good with sandwiches, pasta dishes, and tostadas.

Leftover rose meat reheats well, and you can even cook extra and experiment with different recipes to decide which is your favorite and what you may want to make again.

Whether you prefer pork or beef, or some of each, once you get used to cooking rose meat, it is possible it may become your “go-to” option instead of using ground beef or pork or pork sausage.

It will make your version of common dishes stand out a bit more, and you may even be asked what you did differently. If you want, you can tell them your secret, or you can let them try and figure it out for themselves.

In the meantime, you can think of lots of new and delicious ways to prepare your rose meat for the next time you have someone over for dinner.