The Delicious USA festival, taking place from July 16–August 16, features some 24 restaurants that showcase the versatility and wholesomeness of food from the United States. While the full list of restaurants and their dishes will be announced in early July, we want to give you a preview of some hero products that chefs have chosen to highlight in their Delicious USA dishes. Hopefully this will whet your appetite and feed you with knowledge to pose as an expert when you enjoy the Delicious USA dishes with your friends.
Delicious USA Ingredient Preview Series: US beef
Beef produced in the United States is known worldwide for its taste, tenderness and juiciness. Farmers and ranchers utilize the United States’ abundant land, water and feed resources to raise cattle sustainably, while allowing consumers to enjoy a wide range of nutrient-dense US beef products. Cattle raising is a family business; there are more than 800,000 cattle operations throughout the United States, with some cattle being raised in all 50 US states. All beef produced in the United States undergoes mandatory federal inspection to ensure all products entering into commerce are safe and wholesome.
Delicious USA 2020 features US short ribs and American Wagyu cuts.
US short ribs
Burger-, roast- and steak-crazy America discovered the short rib only in the past 3–4 decades after Hong Kong and Korean buyers in the early 1980s taught US beef processors to fabricate the item out of primal ribs and bellies, or plates. New demand then developed from Korea, where the opening of the imported beef market made Korea’s signature fine food dish, galbi ribs, affordable to all. Korean immigrants in New York and especially Los Angeles developed a New World variant to galbi called the “LA rib” by cutting the cattle rib complex across rather than along the bone. Soon after, short ribs from grain-fed US cattle became the global specification of choice, with their innate tenderness and flavor making them an ideal beef product for roasting, braising, pan-frying and steaming. And down in the heart of American beef country – Texas – bone-in short ribs have become a new favorite among masters of the low-and-slow BBQ tradition.
Wagyu beef production in the United States dates back 45 years, when two black and red Wagyu bulls each were exported to the United States as seed stock for the USA’s first herd. These bulls were initially bred with Angus and other continental breeds, but in 1993, several hundred Japanese Wagyu females arrived to US shores, allowing for the start of a pure-bred herd. Initial Wagyu beef production was exported back to Japan, but appreciation for the highly marbled product grew in fine-dining establishments across the country. Moreover, many chefs found that a Japanese Wagyu bloodline crossed with continental breeds produced beef with a deeper, buttery flavor, creating a palate more aligned with that of American beef lovers. Thus, the American Wagyu story was born. On a health-conscious note, research by health experts says that the monounsaturated to saturated fat ratio is higher in Wagyu than in other beef. Due to high US demand, most American Wagyu is consumed in the United States.
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