With regard to biology, flesh is the soft substance of a human or other animal body that consists of muscle and fat; for vertebrate, this especially includes muscle tissue (skeletal muscle), as opposed to bones and viscera. Flesh may be used as food, in which case it is commonly called meat.
In the food context, flesh refers to the edible muscle tissue of animals that are used for food. This includes beef, pork, poultry, and fish, among others.
Some examples of flesh commonly used in cooking include:
- Beef: The meat of cattle, commonly used for steaks, roasts, and ground beef.
- Pork: The meat of pigs, commonly used for bacon, ham, pork chops, and sausages.
- Poultry: The meat of domesticated birds such as chicken, turkey, and duck, commonly used for chicken breasts, wings, and whole roasted turkey.
- Fish and seafood: The flesh of various types of fish and other aquatic creatures such as salmon, shrimp, crab, and lobster, commonly used for sushi, seafood chowder, and fish and chips.
Similar foods to flesh include:
- Tofu: A protein-rich food made from soybeans, commonly used as a meat substitute in vegetarian and vegan dishes.
- Tempeh: A protein-rich food made from fermented soybeans, commonly used as a meat substitute in vegetarian and vegan dishes.
- Seitan: A protein-rich food made from wheat gluten, commonly used as a meat substitute in vegetarian and vegan dishes.
- Eggs: The oval-shaped reproductive bodies laid by birds, commonly used in baking and cooking as a binding agent or as an ingredient in dishes such as omelets and quiches.
- Dairy products: Milk and milk-based products such as cheese, yogurt, and butter, commonly used in cooking and baking as a source of fat, protein, and flavor.