Inexpensive, very flavoursome and fairly fatty cuts of beef that are suited to long, slow cooking in stews and casseroles. Thick flank, hindquarter flank and forequarter flank, the latter of which comes with the rib attached, come from the rear or side of the cow and can all be treated in the same way. Thin flank should be cooked quickly (see preparation).
If the flank is cut into thin strips, or minced – it can then be fried quickly in stir-fries, or pressed into patties or burgers and cooked until pink. Thin flank steaks cut against the grain can be fried quickly and make a flavoursome minute steak.