- Macknade Fine Foods

Getting Thrifty with our Butchers

Join our Head Butcher, Simon, as we explore some of the more unusual cuts on our counter…

How to eat meat sustainably (especially beef) is a hot topic, now more than ever, and the growing trend for eating meat in moderation is unquestionably a good thing. We love the idea of eating tastier meat from the very best sources, choosing pasture-raised where possible, and reducing our impact on the environment at the same time.

Much of the beef in our butchery is certified by the Pasture Fed Livestock Association (or PFLA) who guarantee that the cattle have only been fed on grasses, wildflowers & herbs throughout the duration of their lives. This does however come at a premium and you do expect to pay a little bit more.

Simon, our Head Butcher, is an ex-Michelin star chef and knows that with proper cooking and a little creativity, thriftier cuts can be just as tasty. Here he highlights his favourite three cuts, how to make the most out of them and what recipes you can try them in…

Shin of Beef

A long, slow, braising cut. Get the best out of it by cooking slowly for around 4 to 5 hours.

Most people know shin of beef from classic meals like casseroles and beef bourguignon but we recommend trying it in a curry, marinating the beef in lots of spice to cut through the richness of the fat. Using a cut that takes a longer time to cook has the added bonus of letting the spices blend and develop.

Flat Iron Steak

If you don’t have five hours to spare, then a flat iron steak is the perfect quick cook solution, taking only 2 to 3 minutes for an 8oz steak. Cook medium to rare as it retains more flavour that way.

Simon’s advice…  Keep it simple and serve with triple cooked chips and peppercorn sauce. The ideal recipe for Valentine’s Day!

Skirt Steak

Traditionally used as a braising cut, this is a much more affordable alternative to your traditional cuts of steak. It’s another good one if you’re short on time as it cooks quickly in 2 to 3 minutes. It won’t be as tender as fillet but you will get a lot more flavour.

Simon suggests using skirt steak in a Thai beef salad, marinating for several hours in Asian flavours that include soy, sugar, chillies and fish sauce. Serve with fresh, vibrant vegetables like cucumber & spring onions, topped with coriander. Use a direct heat source like a BBQ, grill or pan.

Bonus Tip: Always cut against the grain of the meat when using skirt.

Our blog is full of great recipes to make the most of the incredible ingredients available in-store and you can sign up to our mailing list via the footer below to get them direct to our inbox.

All of our butchers are either ex-chefs or keen cooks, so ask for advice in-store too.

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