Meat Pounders

Published May 1, 2010. From Cook's Illustrated.

Flattening a pork or chicken cutlet takes a steady hand and the right tool.

Overview:

Flattening a pork or chicken cutlet takes a steady hand and the right tool; otherwise, your dinner’s liable to be raggedy around the edges. There are two styles of meat pounders: those with vertical handles and those that are offset-handled (i.e. horizontally oriented). We tested five models, in both styles, priced from $17.99 to $179.99. In the main, heavier models (approaching 2 pounds), with larger surface areas and vertical handles offered better leverage and control. Our first choice flattened cutlets quickly and easily with hardly any damage to the meat or our wallets.

Flattening a pork or chicken cutlet takes a steady hand and the right tool; otherwise, your dinner’s liable to be raggedy around the edges. There are two styles of meat pounders: those with vertical handles and those that are offset-handled (i.e. horizontally oriented). We tested five models, in both styles, priced from $17.99 to $179.99. In the main, heavier models (approaching 2 pounds), with larger surface areas and vertical handles offered better leverage and control. Our first choice flattened cutlets quickly and easily with hardly any damage to the meat or our wallets.

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