Wednesday, 16 March 2011

Great British Food Revival

Well that was an interesting programme and one I fully subscribe to as eating food is not about just eating to survive but real food is all about good flavour .  I only caught this programme by chance - I understand that it commenced last week but in case you missed it you can catch up here 

I intend to play catch up on last week's episode on iplayer probably at the weekend when I have a little more time I think this consisted of making bread with the Roux Brothers and also the Hairy Bikers preparing a vegetarian dish.

Where I can, I buy from my Butcher - although occasionally I do use the supermarket - not by choice. I prefer the Butchers, but I cannot get to the Butchers under my own steam as I do not drive. I am hoping to have another bash - depends on whether or not my GP will clear me to have another go or whether or not he tells me to steer clear.  It would be lovely to clear off under my own steam to places and things I want to do.  Its very restricting having to rely on someone else or on public transport.

However, I digress.  Back to food and meat.  One thing I will not be buying from the supermarket again in a hurry is leg of pork.  The last time we bought one it was horrible and we had been looking forward to it as previously up until then we had had reasonable quality meat.  We love roast pork especially pork belly bought from the butchers and then stuffed with home made stuffing and crackling (with no salt in sight).   I tend to buy at least a couple of bellies at a time, prep them with the homemade stuffing and then pop the rest into the freezer for a later date. Absolutely scrummy.

Originally my grandparents kept their own pigs (and my granddad used to slaughter them himself -  this was pre all the regulation days) and everything was used.  In later years my Nan always used to use a local butcher who used to choose from various farmers which animals he would buy.  The meat she got from him was always well flavoured and tasty.  Nan also used to buy the lights liver etc and boil them up in an old pot on the Rayburn.  Always smelt good but when you looked in the pot uggh - well that's how it appeared to us as children.  All the dogs were fed this way they never bought dog meat, but always did home prepared and the dogs used to scoff the lot. 

What I haven't told you before I don't think is that my Uncle used to be a dairy farmer and I have never had home made cream or butter like his was. Creamy thick and luscious.  To die for - you just cannot buy it like he used to make. He had to give the farm up as a result of developing Angina which seriously grieved him as he loved animals and being out and about in the fresh air.  However he then bought a small holding and used to keep a house cow and calf as well as chickens. 

So flavour is everything at the end of the day - especially if you have a really good piece of meat or have lovely fresh ingredients.  There is a rule in cooking which literally is to spend what you can (obviously we are all limited by our own personal circumstances) and buy the best quality ingredients you can for your money.  They must have flavour though they might not be the prettiest but or the most uniform but they beat hands down with flavour.  Rare breed meats  if the public buys them helps sustain the breeds worth and secures the breeds from disappearing off the table.  Equally heritage variety vegetables and fruit although not necessarily popular are worth seeking out. So support your local food producers independent non-chain shops like butchers, bakers greengrocers.  They have a place in our food chain for producing good quality produce and by supporting local you are saving food miles.

So if you have a chance have a peek.  It really was a very good programme.  I shall be watching next weeks edition.




  1. I'm very lucky to have a fabulous butcher in the village. He buys only local meat, and pork is always outdoors. He's a game dealer, and as we are only 4 miles from Cannock Chase venison is often an option. I haven't purchased meat from the supermarket now for over 10 years, you simply cannot beat the flavour and the advice from a good butcher.

  2. I was brought up on a dairy farm and enjoyed loads of fresh milk and eggs as a child...we were very fortunate. Noreen lives on a farm and has made butter from their milk. She gave me some and it was the best I've ever tasted.

    We both try to avoid supermarkets as much as possible and use local butchers and greengocers instead. Better produce and a much more satisfying and personal way to shop. I so agree with your sentiments!


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