There are many tips and tools out there for ensuring you never cook a steak, roast or piece of chicken past its perfectly succulent end point. But cooks are human, mistakes happen, and meat gets overcooked. It’s tragic to be sure, but not all is lost. Tough, dry meat is a perfect candidate for savoury fillings and decadent spreads.
You can make overcooked meat edible again, and all you need is a food processor and a bit of fat. To make a delicious meaty filling for pasta, hand pies, or dumplings, puree it with olive oil until smooth, then stuff into whatever carbohydrate vessel you see fit. For extra flavour, blend in a little cooking liquid, sherry, or any spices and seasonings you think would taste heavenly. The options are kind of endless.
A rillette is a slightly fancier but similarly easy project for your secret shame, allowing you to play off your oversight as downright intentional. To make this indulgent spread, combine any tough and dry animal protein (chicken or pork are great options) with some stock and rendered lard (Bon Appetit suggests pork, but duck fat would be divine) in the food processor until you have a spreadable, buttery paste.
Bon Appetit (linked below) has even more great tips for repurposing “ruined” meat, but I think the above two are so good, they just might turn this kitchen nightmare into my favourite mistake.
So You’ve Overcooked Your Meat. Now What? [Bon Appetit]