The Bonanza Cut, Unveiled by Meat Science Professor

Jamie Johansen

Kaimi IMG_3817A small cut of beef that meat cutters throw in with ground meat is now being looked at as a high-end delicacy by researchers at the University of Nevada, Reno. They call it the “Bonanza Cut.”

The small, quarter-moon-shaped slice of beef that has a taste and tenderness that outclasses any other cut except filet mignon made its debut for media, meat industry representatives and University officials in a private tasting.

Assistant professor of meat science Amilton de Mello, who has redeveloped the use for the piece of meat, talked about the science behind the cut, its ease of trimming and profitability for the meat processing industry, as well as the potential for restaurants to offer it as a premier menu item. The Bonanza Cut is juicy, extremely tender and very marbled. The petite slice of beef is ideal for grilling and practically melts in your mouth.

“Chefs and restaurants will love this cut, it can be portioned for many sizes of servings,” de Mello, from the College of Agriculture, Biotechnology and Natural Resources, said. “And for meat producers, it offers a higher price point and more profits by taking this cut in a new direction.”

“It can be served in a variety of ways, grilling on a flat top, grill or even a cast iron skillet,” Coonrad said. “A light marinade will complement the innate flavor of the meat. The first bite gives a blast of flavor and then the pure flavor of the beef comes through.”

Coonrad, with 20 years of experience as a chef, trained at both the California Culinary Academy in San Francisco and the Culinary Institute of America at Greystone. He created two themes for the Bonanza Cut: Mediterranean and Southwest, with six recipes. One of the recipes, The Southwest Bonanza Cut, El Paso style, features a tangy southwest marinade for the cuts served with roasted corn and black bean salad with baked potato wedges and a jalapeno aioli garnish.

Consumers won’t find the Bonanza Cut in the meat department or restaurants yet. It will be up to the meat producers, such as JBS who funded de Mello’s research, to make the cut available.

Agribusiness, Beef, Food, Meat, Meat Science