The Meat Cooking Expert is bought to you by a master Butcher with over 15 years meat retailing experience. I have trained for 5 years under a local apprenticeship and attended the Smithfield Colledge, London studying meat retailing which resulted in being accredited with the converted ‘Master Butcher’ status. Serving customers in several high profile businesses has provided me with a significant and diverse knowledge around cooking meats of all varieties. Over the coming months I will be featuring many recipes for all categories of meat from how to cook steaks including Ribeye, Fillet, Rump, Sirloin (New York Strip Steak) and the way to cook the perfect roast beef. Focusing on methods to help you cooking meat not only beef cuts but also Pork, Chicken and Hamburgers and also providing some in valuable advice around cooking times and temperatures – enjoy the site and please advise me of any recipes you would like to see!
We all live busy lifestyles. Deciding on decent recipes for dinner just before leaving home in the morning in a rush can be difficult. What are the kids going to want? Will my husband be bored with yet another weekly round of the same meals? Perhaps you want ideas for healthy meals or quick meals that can satisfy the hordes yet still taste great!
Thankfully for you I have been in that self-same situation on many occasions and have taken the hard guesswork out of mealtimes for you. Below are some of my top recipes for dinner times that will delight both the kids and couples alike or just yourself if you want something quick and easy.
Chicken Recipes for Dinner
One of my favorite quick and easy chicken recipes involves the humble chicken breast (skin removed) some fresh breadcrumbs an egg and seasoning.
Chicken Schnitzel (serves 2)
- 2 x Chicken Breasts skin removed
- 1 x Large egg
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Fresh Breadcrumbs (or you can buy them ready made)
Prepare the Chicken Schnitzel
Place the chicken breast with the shiny topside facing you on a cutting board. Place a sharp knife at the centre side of the breast and whilst holding the chicken breast with one hand on top gently cut 3/4 the way through. You are essentially cutting the breast in half width ways without going all the way through to make a ‘butterfly’. Repeat this for the other breast and spread out the meat.
Next, get yourself a food bag and cut it at the sides so that it is one single sheet large enough to fit over the chicken breast including the bottom (you want to ‘wrap’ the breast so that you have plastic on the top and bottom to avoid sticking when you bash it). Place the plastic over the chicken and with a wooden rolling pin bash the chicken until it is flat and even.
I like to make my own breadcrumbs from old bread. Even if your bread is fresh you can still place it in a luke warm oven for 10 mins on a baking tray. This will release the moisture from the bread and dry it out. Once dried in the oven simply break it apart and put it in a food blender to create fresh homemade breadcrumbs (alternatively buy some!)
Place your breadcrumbs on a large plate and spread them out. Season with some salt and pepper.
Create your Chicken Schnitzel!
Next, break an egg into a bowl and mix well. Then pour the egg mixture onto a large plate.
Simply dip both sides of the chicken into the egg mixture and then immediately transfer to the seasoned breadcrumbs coating both sides well.
Cook it up!
Get a hot frying pan or griddle ready with a small amount of oil. Gently place the chicken in breadcrumbs into the pan (place it away from you to prevent the oil spitting at you) and allow to cook for no more than 2-3 minutes each side. Given they are thin they do not take very long to cook at all.
One of the easiest and most tasty pasta dishes on the planet is one of the simplest to make. Every cook should master the art of a basic tomato sauce which I will teach you below. Once you can create a base sauce as tasty as this you will find yourself using it a whole manner of ways from a quick tomato pasta dish made with fresh pasta to rich bolognaise sauces you have been warned! this recipe seriously kicks some ass and gives you some serious credibility in the kitchen (that’s good no?!)
4 Step Pasta and Meatballs in under 35 minutes
Grab a medium sized onion and dice it finely. Add a chopped clove of garlic to the onion.
Fire up your favorite frying pan and add a tablespoon of extra virgin olive oil until hot.
Add the onion and garlic and turn down the heat to low for around 8-10 minutes stirring often – you want the onions to be tender and soft without burning.
Take the onion and garlic mixture away from the heat and turn into a small bowl. Don’t wash the frying pan we are going to need it again in a moment. Let the onions cool down for 5 mins (spread them around the sides of the bowl to quicken the cooling.
Once the onion and garlic are cool enough mix them with around 500G of ground beef mince mixing with your clean hands until fully incorporated.
Season the beef mince/garlic and onion mixture with a good helping of good quality sea salt and freshly ground black pepper.
Once you have mixed the ground beef well with the onions and garlic, take small pieces of mixture (wetting your hands will make this easier) and create around 30 small meatballs placing them on a plate that will fit into your refrigerator. Once done put them in the fridge and leave to cool and firm up nicely.
Get your best cutting hat on and dice up nice and small 2 x cloves of garlic. Place two tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil into the pan you used for the onions earlier and bring up to a med-high heat. Add the two cloves of garlic and fry stirring continuously for around a minute – then add two cans of the best diced tomatoes you can find (don’t be tempted to get cheap cans of tomatoes, pay a little bit more for the best variety) and stir in ensuring all the fried garlic is nicely incorporated into the sauce.
IMPORTANT! Now is the time to add some salt and pepper to your tomato sauce. Add in a small sprinkle and taste it. If it needs more to your taste add it and don’t be afraid of using more, the salt interacts with the tomatoes to bring out the flavors – this is where your sauce really transforms itself into something special – keep tasting and adjusting until perfect. You can also add oregano or basil at this point for even more flavor. To add even more depth to the sauce you can add a few drops of balsamic vinegar or Worcester sauce.
Allow the sauce to simmer very gently for 10 mins.
Bring up a pan of water to the boil adding a dash of salt. Add in your spaghetti and allow to cook according to quantity (see packet).
While the Spaghetti is cooking;
In a new frying pan place a tablespoon of olive oil and bring up to a medium heat. Add in the meatballs from the fridge and turn them to brown on all sides. The meatballs will take around 10 minutes to cook. Once cooked place the meatballs into the tomato sauce and allow to simmer gently until your spaghetti is cooked through.
All that is left is to serve your masterpiece. Strain the spaghetti and place a good portion into a pasta bowl. Place sufficient amounts of meatballs onto the pasta bed and dowse with copious amounts of zangy zingy amazing tomato sauce and serve with Parmesan cheese and fresh crusty bread to mop up all the juices at the end!
Beef Jerky love it or hate it os one of the most widely eaten foods in the US. It can become quite expensive to keep purchansing pre dried beef jerky and many of us also like to know exactly what ingredients go into making it.
This is where a beef jerky cooker comes into its own. A simple device that dries and produces outstandingly tasty beef jerky better (in our opinion!) than what you can buy from the supermarket shelves. Not only better tasting but you also know exactly whats inside and how it is produced.
You may think that creating your very own beef jerly yourself takes time and experience but it really doesn’t. A good quality beef jerky cooker coupled with a tasty beef jerky oven recipe is all that is needed to produce delicious results time and time again.
Our favorite beef jerky cookers are ones that provide consistent results in the least amount of time without a massive learning curve to use them. You also want one with a decent timer that you can simply set up and it will alert you when ready.
Our favorite is the Nesco Snackmaster Dehydrator and beef Jerky Maker – it creates brilliant results each and every time and is one of the highest (no surprise!) rating beef jerky cookers around!
London has one of the highest densities of restaurants per square mile anywhere in the world. The city is brimming with cafes, casual restaurants, fine dining establishments and street food stands. Walking through the streets of London is an experience in itself, with flavours of food wafting from kitchens on every street.
London is also a very big city, with a number of boroughs breaking down the most central locations and residential areas. Each borough has its own charm, and a vibe running through it influencing the tastes of the people and what sort of food is served in the area. Let’s take a look at four of the best London boroughs for food, and what you’ll find in each of them:
Westminster is one of the biggest and most central boroughs, with many landmarks that signal what London is all about to tourists. The heart of the west end is located in Westminster where you’ll find fantastic shopping and a bright cosmopolitan environment day and night! Areas in Westminster such as Soho are alive with trendy eateries and restaurants on every street. Some of these places are elusive and popular, with young pretty things queuing the length of streets for the unreserved tables inside. The price bracket is 7 or 8 out of 10, so you’ll need to pay a good price for your meal, but it will be worth it.
Hackney isn’t far from Camden, but it’s very much ‘the people’s borough’ with a large amount of residential living. The area is also near where the 2012 London Olympics will be held, raising the profile somewhat of the area. Hackney is great for low priced meals, and there are a number of takeaways and food deliveries around this part of London offering Chinese and Indian food as well as pizza. Food delivery London is extremely popular and has really helped put areas such as Hackney on the map.
Camden has a unique feel, and diverse inhabitancy, with an eccentric mix of locals. This has influenced the restaurants and takeaways in the area making it one of the best places in London to travel for food. Camden is known for the markets and lock around the canal, and around here there are a number of small markets serving some of the best street food around. The Camden Lock has anything from Brazilian to Mexican to Japanese, and if you venture into the Stables Market then Chinese and Asian food is rife, with a large number of stalls bartering for your trade and enticing you with free samples of their produce. Expect cheap meals galore.
Kensington & Chelsea
London has a number of affluent areas too, such as Kensington & Chelsea, arguably the nicest part of London to live and get food. There are restaurants all over this borough that reflect the type of people who love locally. A large number of Michelin starred establishments lurk on the streets, as well as some of the more popular high street chains. Getting food around here is an expensive affair, but worth it for a special treat or if you are lucky enough to be able to afford living in this area. Expect to pay top dollar for a 3 (or more!) course meal here, but hey, treat yourself!
Steve lives in London, and loves ordering from urbanbite.com.
Whether you can cook, or can’t, everyone loves a takeaway. I’m no meat cooking expert, so ordering takeaways becomes part of my regular eating activity. I’ve learnt that you can order food online for delivery which really speeds everything up. There are expensive ways of ordering though, and you can save a lot of money by understanding the takeaway menu and where the value lies.
Check for meal deals
A lot of menus will have the main items listed, but also include a range of set meals that include popular options for sharing and ease. There are a number of benefits to this method of ordering. Firstly it is a lot easier as you do not have to search through the whole menu to find exactly what you want. You can also save a lot of money because these deals are put together to offer a discount. The last big advantage of order set meals is that you get to try new dishes. They offer variety and some of the dishes you might not traditionally order, but when they come to you for tasting you can be blown away.
Check delivery prices
A lot of takeaway restaurants will deliver food for free, but do not take this for granted. Make sure you check the whole menu to see if they have a delivery charge, or if you have to spend a minimum amount to qualify for the free delivery. You often have to spend at least £10 to get free delivery or a small charge might be incurred meaning a more expensive meal than you might have thought.
Look out for freebies
A lot of take always will offer free items if you spend a certain amount of money, and the treats can be extremely tasty! For example a Chinese takeaway might offer you a free portion of crispy duck if you spend a certain amount. If your total spend for the order is near this threshold, it is often worth spending the little bit extra to get the freebies. This is all about maximising value, and if you have any leftover food then you can eat it the next day!
Avoid the premium items
Some takeaway menus have a lot of expensive options that are high profit margin for the takeaway. These are often popular dishes that people order and they know they can charge a lot of money for them. A classic example of this is chicken satay skewers. They often cost a lot for just a few sticks and this does not represent good value, but as they are very tasty people still order them. Avoid the expensive options on the menu for the best value.
This guest post has been written by Steve, who eats a lot of Brighton takeaway as a cooking expert he is not!
The UK loves curry and this trend is catching over to Ireland very quickly too. Indian food is on the top of the list for takeaways and exotic meals and it is easy to see why. The blend of spices make curries really interesting meals, and now that you can order takeaways online, the whole industry has changed.
It was not long ago when you had to visit a takeaway in order to get a menu, and then you have to call them to place the order. This was a lot of hassle, and you never really got any proper choice in different places to eat. The routine became monotonous as it can be hard to find the new restaurant or takeaway you want to sample. You can now order online on websites like Just-Eat when you really crave that takeaway Dublin has to offer.
Here are some of the top dishes that you simply have to try on your next takeaway if you want the authentic experience in the comfort of your own home.
Chicken Tikka Masala – This aromatic and creamy dish is the top ordered Indian takeaway dish in the UK and Ireland. It is made from blending spices with cream and almonds. The sauce is slow cooked and then the meat is added. The taste is sweet and savoury at the same time and the sauce covers rice and nan perfectly. The heat level is mild making it extremely pleasant on any palette and this is why it is such a hit.
Lamb Bhuna – If you prefer something a little spicier and rich then a lamb bhuna is for you. The sauce is tomato and onion based, like many traditional Indian dishes and the heat level is medium. This can be changed to your taste though, as madras hot is popular option for really curry enthusiasts. The lamb meat works perfectly too as the meat absorbs the flavour really well.
Sag Aloo – This is the perfect vegetarian dish as is made from a mix of potato and spinach. This is a tried and tested combination and works extremely well with the spices, nutmeg and garlic that are added into the dish. The dish is not very spicy and is perfectly suitable for a side to all the meat. You can have it as a main course though if you wish.
I recommend ordering these three dishes for takeaway if you want to get some spice into your life and sample the best dishes that the country has to offer. They will be delivered to your door ready to eat with no hassle in terms of preparation or cooking. Enjoy!