Sweet potato, Bean and Beef Shepherd's Pie

Sweet Potato, Beef and Bean Shepherd Pie 

This sweet potato, bean and beef shepherd’s pie is packed with flavour and nutrients and can also be made the night before.

The sweet potato provides a boost on your vitamin intake, specially vitamins A and C, as well as fewer calories than white potatoes, more fiber and fewer total carbs. This recipe also has added protein and fibers coming from the beans.

Ingredients:

  • 600g sweet potato, peeled and cut into small cubes
  • Small splash of milk
  • 400g of beef/lamb mince
  • 115g black beans (drained weight), drained and washed
  • 115g red kidney beans (drained weight), drained and washed
  • x1 400g can tinned tomatoes
  • 150g button mushrooms
  • 4 spring onions, sliced
  • 1 large red onion, peeled and finely diced
  • 2 garlic cloves, peeled and finely diced
  • 1 tablespoon maple syrup
  • Handful fresh coriander, roughly chopped
  • Teaspoon smoked sweet paprika
  • Juice of 1 lime
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Olive oil

Method:

  1. Pre-heat the oven to 200°C. 
  2. Boil the peeled sweet potatoes until tender, about 30 minutes. Drain and leave to one side.
  3. Fry the onions, garlic and a pinch of salt, in a drizzle of olive oil over a medium heat for 5 minutes, until the onion softens. Add the paprika and slices of spring onion, sauté for 2-3 minutes, ensuring they are coated in the paprika, before adding the mushrooms and mixing again.
  4. Add the mince and cook until turns brown and then put in both beans and cook for another 5 minutes.  Then add the tinned tomatoes, maple syrup, lime juice, pepper and coriander, mixing everything through.
  5. Once the sweet potatoes are soft, mash them with the milk and a pinch of salt.
  6. Spoon the mince and bean mix at the bottom of a baking tray and top with the sweet potato mash.
  7. Place in the oven to grill until it starts to crisp on the top, about 20-25 minutes.

Serve piping hot, share your photos and tag us!

And don’t forget that we have a great selection including turkey burgers, beef burgers, stir fries and meatballs. All you need to do is pop them in the oven and add a few more vegetables to add to the nutritional content of the meal.

MJ


Beef and Bean Casserole

 Beef and Bean Casserole 

This Beef and Bean Casserole recipe is simple, can easily be made the night before and will actually taste even better the next day as the flavours develop and the meat will be even more tender.

Rib beef steak is a great cut for stewing or for casseroles as there is a little bit of fat which is necessary for the cooking process and adds to the flavour.

Don’t be afraid of fat, we need fat to give us energy especially in winter months. Fat gets a bad press but research is now showing the benefits of having fat in our diets along with protein, vegetables and fruits.

Replacing refined carbohydrates (white bread, white rice, sugary foods and processed foods) with saturated fat may reduce the risk of heart disease according to studies carried out by Food and Nutrition research.

This recipe (adapted from Safefood) also has protein coming from the butter beans added. This is a good way of getting different amino acids from various protein sources into the diet.

Ask the butchers in Hugh Maguire’s to trim some of the fat off before taking it, it’ll be one less job for you at home!

Ingredients:

  • 675g (1½ lb) of rib beef steak
  • 1 dessertspoon of cooking oil
  • 1 large onion, peeled and chopped
  • 25g (1 oz) of corn-flour
  • 7 mushrooms, sliced
  • 3 medium carrots, sliced
  • 575ml (1 pint) of beef stock or 2 stock cubes dissolved in 575ml (1 pint) of warm water
  • 400g of butter beans
  • 1 tablespoon of tomato puree
  • Salt and pepper, to season

Method:

  1. Pre-heat the oven to 150°C / 325°F / Gas Mark 3
  2. Trim the beef and cut it into thin strips about 2 inches in length
  3. Heat the oil and fry the chopped onion, mushrooms and carrots for 2 to 3 minutes
  4. Place in the casserole dish
  5. Fry the beef strips until brown
  6. Place beef in the casserole dish, leave the juices in the pan
  7. Mix the corn-flour with 2 dessertspoon water and then mix it into the juice in the pan. Cook stirring gently for 2 to 3 minutes
  8. Remove from heat and stir in the stock. Bring to the boil
  9. Add the beans, tomato puree, salt and pepper
  10. Add the sauce to the casserole dish and cook for 1½ hours
  11. Serve with some mash or boiled potatoes and don’t forget to share your photos and tag us!

MJ


Back to School and Child Nutrition!

Back to school and child nutrition!

Back to school can be daunting and stressful… so here are a few tips to help you settle back into the routine!

It’s that time of year again, the evenings are getting shorter, the temperature is dropping and the little ones are returning to school for another year.

We all know what that means; the daily dilemma begins, what to pack in their lunch boxes and make for dinner at night that will satisfy everyone in the house…

But it doesn’t need to be so complicated, at Hugh Maguire Butchers we have a huge variety of products and cuts of meat that you can take home to make every meal interesting.

It’s important that children get nourishing food for their minds and body to stay mentally and physically alert in school so each meal should contain a source of protein (meat, fish, bean/legumes, eggs), carbohydrates (potatoes, sweet potatoes, wholegrain rice/pasta) and two sources of vegetables (one of which should be green). 

Try to have fish twice weekly, and preferably at least one of them being an oily fish like salmon, mackerel or trout.

Roasting vegetables like carrots, parsnip, peppers and celery with a little olive oil, salt and pepper is a tasty way of getting vegetables into children who mightn’t be too fond of them ordinarily. And you can always try them raw as well, also with a drizzle of olive oil and a pinch of salt.

Beef, lamb, chicken and turkey are excellent sources of protein, which keeps you fuller for longer and is necessary for children’s growth and development.

And for those nights that you don’t feel like preparing a meal from scratch why not try some of  our prepared meals at Hugh Maguire Butchers.

We have a great selection including turkey burgers, beef burgers, stirfrys and meatballs. All you need to do is pop them in the oven and add a few more vegetables to add to the nutritional content of the meal.

Tips for preparing for the week ahead:

  • Plan, plan, plan!!!
  • Prepare meals like casseroles and shepherd’s pie at the weekend and freeze them until needed later in the week.
  • Always have beef or lamb mince at home or in the freezer. You can turn them into a meal easily with a can of chopped tomatoes (bolognaise, shepherd’s pie, stews).
  • If you have a leftover chicken, don’t throw out the carcass! Instead slowly boil overnight with onions, carrots, celery and water to make delicious healthy bone broth. This is a great source of nutrition and ideal for the winter months to strengthen the immune system and fight off colds and flus. Ask Caroline in our store for tips on this and how to make it into soup.

If you are looking for a little inspiration, here are some recipes to give you some motivation before the school term really kicks off!

And don’t forget… if you have any topics you would like covered or have any questions, send me a message filling the form below!

Chat soon, MJ


Nutrition labels and what to look out for!

Nutrition labels and what to look out for!

Nutrition labels are everywhere now, but do you know what to look out for?

Nutrition labels helps you as a consumer to make informed decisions about what you are eating, the nutrition content in your food purchases and may lead to you opting for some healthier alternatives. 

There is so much information on a food label, from allergens, ingredient lists and nutritional content, you would be forgiven for getting confused or just giving up and buying the tastiest looking option.

At Hugh Maguire’s we have added a new FitFood range to our already extensive product selection. We have included the nutritional content for each food to this range, for your benefit. Our aim is to provide full transparency of what is in our products whilst helping you make informed choices about what you feed your family. This is particularly important for our FitFood range, as you know exactly what you are getting and there are no hidden fats or sugars… Full Transparency!

Here is a summary of what to look out for on these labels and what each heading means:

Macronutrients/Macros:

These are our main sources of energy and are comprised of carbohydrates, proteins in fats. We all need a healthy balance of each of these macronutrients for good health.

Carbohydrates:

Carbohydrates are our bodies preferred energy source. But what is the Total Carbohydrate that you see on the labels?

Carbohydrates are made up of sugars, starches, fibre and sugar alcohols. On most labels, you will find sugars and dietary Fibre listed as sources.

Sugars are both those naturally found in foods and those that have been added to foods for taste, texture and preservation.

Dietary fibre is made up of sugar molecules that aren’t readily digested. Fibre important for our health as it can help promote intestinal regularity and aid in digestion.

When reading labels, foods containing dietary fibre, natural containing sugars (those found in dairy, fruits and vegetable) and other vitamins and minerals are considered nutrient dense. Where possible, avoid added sugars in foods. It is recommended that <10% of our energy comes from added sugars.

Fats

Fats are an important part of a healthy diet. They are essential for the absorption of vitamins and minerals, building cells, and muscle movement.

Total Fat… What is it?

Fat is found in both plant and animal foods and there are two types of fat: Saturated and Unsaturated.

Saturated fat is found in animal products mainly. We need saturated fats for energy. Saturated fats have been shown to raise cholesterol. However, they raise the good cholesterol HDL too, which is thought to reduce the risk of heart disease. There is conflicting information out there on saturated fats, but what’s important to take home is foods like meat, dairy nuts and oils containing saturated fats are nutrient dense foods and are needed as part of healthy diet.

Unsaturated fats – monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats are found mainly in plant foods. These fats exert beneficial effects on heart health. That are found mainly in oily fish, nuts, seeds, oils and avocados.

Trans fats are hydrogenated fats found predominantly in processed foods to increase their shelf life. These fats have detrimental effects on heart health and should only make up <1% of our energy intake.

Protein

Protein is essential for good health. It provides the building blocks of the body, and not just for muscle, bone, skin and hair. Protein is used primarily for growth, health, and body maintenance.

All your hormones, antibodies, and other important substances are composed of protein. Protein is not used to fuel the body unless necessary.

Amino acids are the building blocks of protein. You get different sources of amino acids from foods. You need a variety of amino acids for your body to function properly.

Meat, fish, eggs, nuts, beans and soy are all good sources of protein. Our Turkey burgers, Venison burgers, Burrito bowl, and Meatza are all sources of protein to get in your diet.

Sodium/Salt

As we know salt can be damaging for our heart health. When looking at labels it can be confusing at some labels list sodium and not salt.

To convert the sodium to salt you need to multiply the sodium X 2.5.

For example, if there is 1g of sodium per 100g of a product, there is 2.5g of salt in the product. 1g X 2.5 = 2.5

Sodium x2.5 = Salt

You should aim to eat no more than 6g of salt per day. High salt is found in processed meals/ ready meals, fast food and canteen/restaurant food.

At Hugh Maguire’s we have the Salt amount listed on our label for your convenience.

We hope this helps and if you have any topics you would like covered or have any questions, send me a message filling the form below and an email to marketing@hmbutchers.com!

Chat soon, MJ


nutrition for kids

Development & nutrition for kids

Children and adolescent development and nutrition!

Child development and nutrition

As many of you may know the growth and development of children and adolescents is heavily reliant on good nutrition obtained from their diets.

The growth spurts for girls starts between the ages 8-12 and for boys starts between 10-14. Therefore, the period before and during these ages are crucial for ensuring our children are getting good quality food, good nutrition, to fulfil their potential.

Vital nutrients

One of the many nutrients required for optimum nutrition is protein. Protein, comprised of amino acids are the building blocks for growth and repair and is key in the pathway for reaching optimal energy. Other nutrients required include iron, B-vitamins, vitamin C, selenium, vitamin A and magnesium.

But how do we get our children to eat all these vital nutrients without making complicated recipes? Easy… meat from your local butchers contains all the listed nutrients required for optimum health.

It’s that simple! Your local craft butcher, provides quality and locally sourced meat so you feel comforted in the fact your feeding your family with nutritious food. Lean red meat, is an excellent source of protein and iron.

Iron from meat is the most readily absorbable form of iron from food sources. When iron is consumed in combination with vitamin C it is absorbed even faster. So, another reason of adding rich greens and colourful vegetables alongside your lean steak or burger.

Local butchers

One of the major benefits of buying your beef from your local butchers you know its grass-fed. You may say so what? Well studies have done comparisons between grass fed beef and grain fed beef and the nutritional differences are worth mentioning.

Grass fed beef are higher in omega-3 fatty acids and conjugated linoleic acid (CLAs) Omega 3s provide a role in optimum cognitive development (essential for those that are studying hard) and are good for heart health.

If you haven’t heard of CLAs, they are powerful polyunsaturated fatty acids that can only be obtained from the diet and have many health benefits including helping to build muscle and discourage weight gain. They also contained more anti-oxidants such as Vitamin A and E.

Meat is extremely versatile, especially for children and teenagers. Ask your own butcher to trim of any
excess fat when buying red meat such as beef and lamb. This ensures you are getting the vital nutrients and avoiding the saturated fats.

Homemade dishes

Other lean meats such as chicken, and trimmed pork do not contain as much iron but contain good sources of protein to keep their energy up for their activities and of course concentrating in school. Lean meat can be used to make healthy homemade dishes such as casseroles, stir-fries, curries, stews, roasts and salads.

It is recommended young children and teenagers eat 1-2 servings of protein each day. Meat as a good source of protein can be consumed 3 -4 days per weeks. Other sources of protein include eggs, nuts seeds, legumes and fish. Try to eat at least 2 portions of oily fish per week also.

If you have any topics you would like covered or have any questions, send me a message filling the form below and an email to marketing@hmbutchers.com!

Chat soon, MJ


Smoked Collar Bacon BLT Cups

Dry Sweet Cured Smoked Collar Bacon BLT Cups

Because everything is better in a bacon cup!

This is a pick me up, quick and simple Smokin’ BLT Cup recipe that will brighten up everyone’s week!

Ingredients

  • 12 slices of The Smokin’ Butcher dry sweet cured smoked collar bacon – get it in-store!
  • 1/2 cup Greek yogurt
  • 2 tsp. lemon juice
  • 2 tbsp. chopped spring onions, plus more for garnish
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 cups halved cherry tomatoes
  • head of iceberg lettuce, chopped
  • avocado, chopped

Method

  1. Preheat oven to 200°C. Invert a muffin tin upside down onto a large rimmed baking sheet.
  2. Cut 8 slices of bacon in half crosswise. Lay two of the halved strips onto an inverted muffin tin cup in the shape of a cross. Weave two more half pieces on both sides to create a mini weave. Wrap the entire cup with a whole slice of bacon.
  3. Repeat to make three more cups. Bake until crispy, about 20 minutes. Let cool for at least 15 minutes.
  4. Make dressing: In a medium bowl, whisk together Greek yogurt, lemon juice and spring onion and season with salt and pepper. Add tomatoes and lettuce and toss to coat.
  5. Remove bacon cups from muffin tin and fill with dressed lettuce and tomatoes. Garnish with more spring onions and serve.
  6. Serve with a nice glass of your favourite local American Pale Ale – and don’t forget to share your photos & tag us!

For more recipes and tips, check my Butchers Block page!


bbq Pulled pork

The Best Pulled Pork Sandwich

The Best Pulled Pork Sandwich for your 4th of July

bbq Pulled pork

You don’t need a big smoker or the crockpot to make a great pulled pork. Fire up the charcoal grill and enjoy the tastiest pulled pork ever!

We are sure having a great summer this year… lots of sunny weekends, BBQs and garden parties! So, for this 4th of July week, we’ve decided to share a very special American-style recipe, a pulled pork that will definitely take your weekend BBQ to a whole other level!

Here is our take on the traditional pulled pork, a four hour slow barbecued pulled pork sandwich with aged cheddar cheese and purple slaw

INGREDIENTS – serves 6

For the pork

  • 2kg Pork shoulder off the bone
  • 2 Large onions sliced
  • 1 Garlic bulb peeled
  • 500ml of your favourite Apple sauce or Apple Relish
  • 1 bunch  Thyme
  • 100g of your favourite BBQ rub
  • ½ cup Dark brown sugar (Muscovado for best results)
  • 1/2 cup rapeseed oil
  • 1 pint Water
  • 4 cups of wood chips

For the Slaw

  • 1 small head red cabbage thinly sliced
  • 2 Carrot grated
  • 1  Red onion thinly sliced
  • 200g Mayonnaise
  • 1 tbl Dijon mustard
  • 2 tbl Brown sugar
  • 1 tbl  Sea salt
  • 3 tbl  Cider vinegar

For the sandwich

  • 6 Brioche burger baps
  • 100g Aged cheddar cheese sliced

Method

For the Shoulder

  1. Trim the excess fat from the top of the pork to allow the rub to better penetrate the meat
  2. Coat the pork with the oil, half of the Apple relish and massage in the BBQ Rub and the brown sugar into the meat and rest it for about 30minutes.
  3. While you wait, make 4 wood chip packets: lay one sheet of foil down, add approximately 1 cup of wood chips and close the packet tightly to form a flat package. Poke holes in the top of the packet to allow the smoke to come out. Make another 3.
  4. In a deep oven dish place the water, onions, whole garlic, thyme and the remaining Apple relish and place the pork shoulder on top.
  5. Cover the the tray with greaseproof paper then tin foil, make sure that all the c
    orners are tucked in nicely and that no steam will be able to escape from the tray when cooking.
  6. Place the pork shoulder into a preheated barbecue at 150c and leave it for four hours, basting the pork with the liquids from the tray and checking the temperature every 30 minutes.
  7. Take the pork from the grill and let sit for 30 mins to rest, covered.
  8. Once rested, remove it from the tray and, on a chopping board, shred (pull) the pork using two forks.
  9. Blend the cooking juices with the onions, garlic and thyme in the blender then strain and add to the shredded pork.

For the Slaw

  1. Combine the cabbage and the sea salt and let sit for twenty minutes in a plastic container, thendrain off excess liquid.
  2. In a separate bowl, combine the mustard, vinegar, sugar and whisk until the sugar is dissolved, then combine all the ingredients together, mix well and season.
  3. To serve, spoon some of the pulled pork into the brioche bun, top with a slice of th
    e aged cheddar cheese, a spoonful of the slaw and cover with the top half of the bun.

Enjoy and don’t forget to share your photos and tag us!

Hugh


MaryJoMaguire

Introducing our in-house nutritionist!

Please welcome Mary-Jo Maguire, our in-house nutritionist!

Hi guys, I’m Mary-Jo Maguire!

I am a nutritionist and will be guest blogging here, sharing tips and discussing topics around the vast amount of benefits that all types of meat can offer.

Growing up in a family business centered around quality food and produce it was only natural I ended up following a career dedicated to food and nutrition. I have a BSc in Human Nutrition in UCD, and I am currently completing a MSc in Personalised Nutrition in the UK.

I always had a passion for healthy living, and I am a firm believer this starts at home.

Keeping it simple is key and a great place to start is your local butcher. For one you know that your meat is being sourced locally and to a top standard and you also know that meat is a nutrient dense food great for all the family.

As a nutritionist, I will be discussing topics around the vast amount of benefits that meat, poultry and more can offer. You can expect to find information on grass fed beef, bone broth and gut health, meat and children’s development, recipes and much more.

If you have any topics you would like covered or have any questions, send me a message filling the form below and an email to marketing@hmbutchers.com!

Chat soon, MJ


Sticky Pork Ribeye Steaks

Honey & Garlic Pork Ribeye Steaks

Enjoy the summer alfresco with this delicious Honey and Garlic (Sticky) Pork Ribeye Steaks! It is great on the barbecue or griddle pan!

This is a quick and simple pork ribeye steaks recipe that will bring something different to the table and everyone will love!

Ingredients

  • 6 (4 ounce) 1-inch thick pork ribeye steaks
  • 1/2 cup ketchup (no added sugar version if possible)
  • 3 tablespoons local honey
  • 2 tablespoons low-sodium soy sauce
  • 2 cloves garlic, crushed

Method

  1. Preheat your barbecue or griddle pan for medium heat and lightly oil the grate.
  2. Whisk ketchup, honey, soy sauce, and garlic together in a bowl to make a glaze.
  3. Sear the ribeye pork steaks on both sides on the barbecue or preheated grill.
  4. Lightly brush your homemade glaze onto each side of the chops as they cook; grill until no longer pink in the centre, about 7 to 9 minutes per side. An instant-read thermometer inserted into the centre should read 65 degrees C.
  5. Serve with some apple relish, a fresh salad and a nice glass of your favourite local cider – and don’t forget to share your photos & tag us!

For more recipes and tips, check my Butchers Block page!


Smokin' Chicken Drumsticks

Smokin’ Chicken Drumsticks

Perfect for the summer, these finger licking Smoked Chicken Drumsticks are packed with flavour and have that smokey twist we love so much!

You can prepare this Smokin’ Chicken recipe on the day or in advance as the spiced chicken can be refrigerated overnight and that will add even more flavour to the meat!

Ingredients

Method

  1. In a medium bowl, stir the brown sugar with the mustard, BBQ rub and jalapeño and season with a good pinch of salt.
  2. Scrape the mixture into a large resealable plastic bag. Add the chicken drumsticks and turn to coat. Seal the bag, pressing out the air; leave it marinating for a couple of hours in the fridge or refrigerate the chicken overnight.
  3. Light a grill and oil the grate. Remove the chicken from the marinade and grill it over moderately high heat, turning occasionally, until browned all over, about 10 to 12 minutes. Transfer the chicken to a plate.
  4. Wrap the soaked beechwood chips in a double layer of foil and poke holes in the top of the packet. Remove the grill grate. Turn the heat off on half of the grill or rake the coals to one side. Set the wood chip packet directly on the coals or flames and replace the grill grate.
  5. When the chips are smoking, return the chicken to the grill over indirect heat. Cover the grill and smoke the chicken for about 30 minutes – or until an instant-read thermometer inserted in the thickest part of the drumsticks registers 75°C.
  6. Transfer the smoked chicken to a platter and serve with some salad and a nice glass of your favourite local cider or a Pinot Noir – don’t forget to share your photos & tag us!

For more recipes and tips, check my Butchers Block page!


Butter-Basted Rib Eye Steaks

Butter-Basted Rib Eye Steaks

Perfect for a Father’s Day cookout, this delicious Rib Eye Steaks recipe is simple yet indulgent!

We’ve been making this recipe Rib Eye Steaks – or variations of it – for such a long time that I don’t even remember where I got it from… all I know is that it gets everyone licking their fingers every time!

I bet it will become one of your family favourites too being so easy to make!

Ingredients

  • Two 1 1/4-pound (550g), bone-in Rib Eye Steaks (try our dry aged selection for an even more indulgent meal)
  • Himalayan pink salt
  • 2 tablespoons rapeseed oil
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 4 thyme sprigs
  • 3 garlic cloves
  • 1 rosemary sprig
  • Freshly ground pepper

Method

  1. Season the Rib Eye Steaks all over with salt and freshly ground pepper. Let the meat stand at room temperature for 30 minutes.
  2. In a large cast-iron skillet, heat the canola oil until shimmering. Add the steaks and cook over high heat until crusty on the bottom, about 5 minutes. Turn the steaks and add the butter, thyme, garlic and rosemary to the skillet.
  3. Cook over high heat, basting the Rib Eye Steaks with the melted butter, garlic and herbs, until the steaks are medium-rare, 5 to 7 minutes longer.
  4. Transfer the steaks to a cutting board and let rest for 10 minutes. Cut the steaks off the bone, then slice the meat across the grain and serve.
  5. Serve with a local craft beer or his favourite red wine – a Cabernet Sauvignon is a perfect pairing -and don’t forget to share your photos and tag us!

For more recipes and tips, check my Butchers Block page!


Grilled Steak with Spicy Vinaigrette

Grilled Steak with Hugh's Smokey-Spicy Vinaigrette

A simple yet perfect grilled steak dish for the Summer!

Ingredients

For the vinaigrette

  • 1/2 cup Irish rapeseed oil
  • 2 tablespoons smoked paprika
  • 1 large shallot, finely chopped
  • 1/3 cup coarsely chopped capers
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
  • 1 clove garlic, finely chopped
  • 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon crushed red chilli flakes
  • Himalayan pink salt

For the steaks

  • 2 32-ounce (900g) bone-in beef rib eyes (about 2″ thick) or sirloin if you like a leaner meat
  • 2 tablespoons rapeseed oil
  • Himalayan pink salt
  • Freshly ground pepper
  • 2 tablespoons light brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons hot paprika

Method

The Vinaigrette – make in advance

  1. Heat oil, garlic and paprika in a small saucepan over medium heat, stirring occasionally, for about 5 minutes – or until warm. Remove from heat and let stand until oil is cool and turns dark red, 1–1 1/2 hours.
  2. Strain paprika oil through a fine-mesh sieve into a small bowl. Mix in shallot, capers, vinegar and red chilli flakes
  3. Season with salt and set aside until serving.
  4. Just before serving, add the chopped parsley, taste and adjust seasoning, if necessary.

The Steak

  1. Let steaks stand at room temperature for about 1 hour before grilling.
  2. Prepare grill: bank coals on 1 side of grill for charcoal or  leave 1 or 2 burners off for a gas grill.
  3. Rub steaks with rapeseed oil and season with salt and pepper.
  4. Grill steaks over direct heat, moving to a cooler area if flare-up occurs, until charred, about 4 minutes per side. Using tongs, hold steaks vertically to sear edges (bone side and fat-cap side) and render some fat, about 2 minutes per side for medium-rare (if you want to be precise, insert an instant-read thermometer into the centre of the steak, if it reads 50-52°C, it’s medium-rare).
  5. Transfer steaks to a cutting board and let rest 10-15 minutes. (Keep charcoal grill hot.)
  6. Mix brown sugar and paprika in a small bowl. Sprinkle over steaks and grill over direct heat until sugar is caramelised, about 1 minute per side.
  7. Transfer to a cutting board and slice. Serve with vinaigrette and your preferred accompaniments and don’t forget to share your photos and tag us!

For more recipes and tips, check my Butchers Block page!


Everything about Dry Age Beef

Everything you need to know about Dry Age Beef

And how our Pink Salt Dry Age Fridge work!

Dry age beef is meat that has been drying (or hung) for several weeks; only the higher grades of meat, such as strip-loins, ribeyes, T-bones and sirloins, can be dry aged, as the process requires meat with a large and evenly distributed fat content.

The process of dry-ageing usually forms an external “crust” on the meat’s surface (which is trimmed when the steak is cut for you) and promotes growth of certain fungal species on that external surface of the meat.

This happens thanks to a process called autolysis that allows the natural enzymes and amino acids in the meat to break down the collagen and fibres.

Our grass fed beef is specially good for dry ageing because, unlike grain fed cattle, our Irish cows generate increased levels of alpha-linolenic acid, which is in fact an omega 3 unsaturated fat, that adds even further intensity of flavour within the marbling as the beef is aged.

After all, we know you are all about the flavour!

So how does our Pink Salt Dry Ageing Fridge work?

The salt blocks, put together to form the back of the fridge, acts as a state-of-the-art natural refrigerator and this ageing process changes beef in two ways.

Firstly, moisture is evaporated from the muscle, creating a greater concentration of beef flavour and taste. Secondly, the beef’s natural enzymes break down the connective tissue in the muscle, which leads to more tender beef.

It’s also worth saying that in our de-humidified, precision temperature controlled Pink Salt Ageing Fridge, the external bacterial bloom is greatly reduced if not removed entirely to ensure that the internal ageing isn’t affected by external factors because the intensity of nitrates delivered by the dry, chilled, saline environment inhibits external bacterial growth, increasing the growth of the right fungi – best of both worlds.

Ok, but what can you expect from meat aged on our Pink Salt Dry Age Fridge?

Well, our Pink Salt Dry Age Fridge sucks the moisture out of the air so the meat can safely dry naturally, allowing for the increased flavours to seriously amaze our customers, without bacterial growth that can often be associated with naturally dry aged meat.

And whilst naturally dry aged meats can be aged safely up to 40 days or so, salt ageing not only breaks through that barrier but also delivers a beautifully intense flavour you will just love.

Now it’s up to you… call in the shop, take some dry aged steaks home and let us know what you think! And don’t forget to share your photos and tag us!

Hugh


Roast Chicken

Chimichurri Roast Chicken

Chimichurri Roast Chicken

Roast Chicken

A twist on your classic roast chicken, this chimichurri version gives a punch of herby flavour to your family dinner!

Ingredients

• 1 Carlow free range chicken, cut into 8 – 10 pieces
• 500g new potatoes
• 500g carrots, halved lengthwise
• 1/2 cup rapeseed oil, plus more for drizzling
• Himalayan pink salt
• Freshly ground black pepper
• 1 cup fresh parsley, tightly packed
• 1 cup fresh coriander, tightly packed
• 1/2 cup chopped red onion
• 3 cloves garlic, chopped
• 1/2 tsp. crushed chilli flakes (optional)
• 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar

Method
1. Place oven racks in top third and bottom third of oven. Preheat oven to 200°C (fan) and line two rimmed sheet pans with parchment paper.

2. Add potatoes and carrots to sheet pan. Rinse chicken and pat dry with paper towels; add chicken pieces to second sheet pan, skin side up. Drizzle both pans with rapeseed oil and massage into chicken and vegetables. Season with salt and pepper on all sides.

3. Place vegetables on bottom rack and chicken on top rack. Roast until internal temperature of largest breast piece reads 75°C, 28 to 30 minutes.

4. Heat broiler and cook until skin is crisp and golden brown, 5 minutes more. Remove chicken from oven to rest, then move vegetables to top rack and broil, 5 minutes.

5. Meanwhile, in a small food processor, combine parsley, coriander, onion, garlic, salt, chilli flakes, and vinegar. Pulse a few times and scrape down sides of the bowl. While motor is running, add oil and process until almost smooth.

6. Transfer chicken and vegetables to a large platter and sprinkle with sea salt. Top with about 1/2 cup chimichurri sauce and serve remaining sauce in a bowl.

7. Serve and enjoy – and son’t forget to share your photos and tag us!

For more recipes and tips, check my Butchers Block page!


Dry Age Steak

Best meat cuts for your BBQ

Best meat cuts for your BBQ

Dry Age Steak

Best meat cuts for your Bank Holiday BBQ: sirloin, pork neck fillets, dry age rib-eye and more!

Looks like the sun is going to make a badly wanted appearance this Bank Holiday weekend so waste no time, take your BBQ out of the shed, give it a good clean and enjoy the long weekend. We have tips for the best grilling experience!

When it comes to feeding hungry crowds on a hot day, serving up flame-loved meats is a must. And while the Irish barbecue is not exactly a fancy feast, after a long winter like the one we just had, it’s worth putting out some special cuts to celebrate!

From pork neck fillets to dry age beef, here’s our guide on how to make the most of your chosen cut of meat.

Best for grill

Striploin, rib-eye, fillet steaks and yes, our ever-popular homemade speciality sausages are the top picks because they’re affordable, easy to barbecue and are packed with flavour.

However, cuts such as flank and rump are as tasty, cook quicker and are great budget-friendly options if you are entertaining a crowd.

To maximise flavour and succulence, try grilling your meat on the bone, especially T-bone or sirloin on the bone. Why? Because the bone helps the flesh retain moisture and texture.

For something extra special we suggest a thick rib-eye on the bone.

Dry age

Dry ageing allows beef to age for up to six weeks in a cool room, exposed directly to the air, so the natural enzymes in the meat allow it to tenderise, darken and shrink, forming a crust that when trimmed, expose a rich red meat inside.

For best results with dry age beef on the grill, go for a nice fat cut about two to three centimetres thick, and to appreciate the full flavour profile, aim for medium-rare, seasoning with just rock salt and pepper.

But whatever you do, don’t leave it on the BBQ for too long, the ageing extracts some of the moisture, so dry-aged meat cooks quicker than other cuts.

Temperature tips

To make the most of your cut of meat, make sure your barbecue is “super hot and super clean” before cooking, even if it means you have to turn down the heat when grilling begins.

It’s also crucial to let meat warm to room temperature before you start cooking it “this relaxes the flesh and allows it to cook more evenly so you have a more tender and juicier meat and less chance of overcooking or drying out the steaks.

Once barbecuing begins, let the meat colour but only to the point when a little juice or blood still comes through when gently pressed. Flip once and let the other side colour, then lift the meat off the heat while it’s still pink in the middle and rest it on a plate, where it will keep cooking as it cools.

You don’t have to keep touching and flipping it, just let it be – but don’t forget about it!

Go slow

But if you fancy trying something really different, how about a beef brisket, beef cheeks or beef short ribs – that you can leave braising in red wine overnight? You can also try pork neck fillet, chops, ribs or diced shoulder of pork, marinated overnight using simple ingredients such as good quality olive oil, garlic and herbs.

Either for the beef or the pork, after marinating, cover with foil in a baking tray or pot, then cook in the oven at low temperature (80ºC to 100ºC max) for 12 hours. The result is an incredibly juicy fall-apart meat, great for a pulled beef or pork sandwiches.

Hope you enjoy your Bank Holiday weekend – share your photos and tag us!