Saturday, 23 July 2011

'watching your waste line.'

Waste. One of the biggest crimes of 21st Century. People grumble on about how much of the Sunday paper they don't read. How full their bin is. How much they have to chuck. Now when I think of this it conjures up overflowing landfills in some distant (we hope!) hell hole. Well we all have far more control over these matters than you would realise.

This is absolutely the case with regard to waste and meat products, and indeed packaging. There's a reason that meat in a butchers shop is not pre-packed. It's so you can tailor your order. Just think, you too could be the proud owner of made to measure gammon, bespoke chops and hand crafted burgers. I jest slightly, but meat comes from life, and it can be expensive, so we should ensure we value it and utilise it i.e eating it! And to us of course, meat is money.

This is why Mrs Canny-Body from down the road is of course allowed to buy two pork and leek sausages, half a pound of back bacon and very occasionally a small joint of salmon cut. Butchers do enjoy it when people spend vast amounts of money (obviously - they are trying to run a business!) But what they hate the most is waste. So think when you buy, and we also have the blessing of the freezer. And never think you're spending too little.


Monday, 4 July 2011

'I dub thee Sir Loin!'

After thinking more about my last entry 'the right cuts' I thought on this further.

Whenever anyone comes into the shop and asks for a fillet steak I carefully lean into the counter and gently pick up the tender joint and place it, deftly onto the surface of the block. Then I pick up the steak knife and slice through the muscle with care and precision.

It's like transporting royalty - because I am so aware of how valuable this part of the beef is.

It's not, I have to say, my favourite steak, but I know the monetary value - and I would get shot if I damaged it in any way. This cut is definitely tender, succulent, melt-in-the mouth; and when cooked perfectly - nothing short of fabulous.

But who decided that the sirloin component of bovine was the best? Who claimed that this was beef royalty? Whereas flank, blade and clod remain the peasants? A life destined for stews and curries... Just as King Rib of Beef - roasting fame, is noble whilst poor Brisket is banished to the humble, cheaper end of the market, or worse - forgotten!

There's a reason that fillet, rib eye, and sirloin are cut from the 'choice' but I would love to know exactly who chose...