These principles apply to all cuts of meat, but are most important for cuts that have less fat to tenderize them.

* Get more flavor from oil-based marinades by first sautéing onions, chiles or spices in the oil.

* Don't let meat sit too long in highly acidic marinades or it will get chewy.

* Salt meat lightly or not at all before cooking, so juices won't be drawn out.

* Sear steaks over high heat. Low-fat roasts should also be cooked at a high temperature.

* Keep the heat low when braising or stewing; if the meat boils, it toughens.

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