Tag Archives: beef

Real Recipe: Bison (or Beef) Braised in White Wine, Finished with Figs and Raisins

By Mario Fiorucci, Co-Founder of The Healthy Butcher

About this recipe.

This recipe is one of my all time favourites.  Most people automatically assume that beef or bison, being big red meat, must be paired with red wine when stewed; on the contrary, white wine works wonders to bring out the delicate flavour of quality red meat.  The addition of figs and raisins brings sweetness at an equal level to the savoriness of a meat stew.

Ingredients:

  • 2-3 lbs beef stew or bison stew or beef blade steaks or bison blade steaks
  • Olive oil and butter
  • 3 carrots
  • 3-4 celery stalks
  • 6 or so garlic cloves
  • 4 cups beef stock (if bison or game stock is available, go with that!)
  • 2-3 cups white wine
  • 1/4 bunch fresh thyme
  • 2 bay leaves
  • Good handful of dried figs
  • Good handful of raisins (I prefer golden or Sultanas, but any raisins will do)
  • Salt and pepper
  • A large pot, preferably an enameled cast iron French oven about 5-6 litres.

Directions:

1. Season the blade steaks generously with salt and pepper. Heat the pot and place butter and olive oil inside. Sear the meat on both sides (you’ll have to do this in batches, don’t crowd the meat), then remove from heat and set aside.

2. Add vegetables and garlic and sweat over medium heat for 10 minutes, stirring with a wooden spoon to loosen the browned bits (deglazing).

3. Add wine and reduce at least half way.

4. Place meat back in pan, add stock to just barely cover the meat, then bring to a bare simmer (add more wine if you wish as well).  Add thyme and bay leaves, and check the seasoning of the liquid. It should be fully seasoned now so add salt and pepper if it is needed. Cover with a tight fitting lid and continue cooking on stove top or in oven at 300˚F to 325.

5. After about 2 hours, remove the meat and strain the liquid.  Add back the meat, figs and raisins, bring back to a bare simmer.   Depending on the pot you are using and the exact quantity of meat, it will another hour or two before it is finished.  Remove the meat when “fork-tender”.  The meat will get very tough during the cooking process so don’t worry.  If you are using blade steaks instead of stewing meat, they will fall apart so you may find it best to separate nice pieces of meat and serve on top of a bed of mashed potatoes or yams.

6. About 15 minutes before serving, strain some of the braising liquid into a pot or saucier and reduce it until thick; drizzle this sauce over your finished dish.  Enjoy!

Enjoy!

Real Recipe: Simple Shepherd’s Pie

Original article published by Megan Redden for LetsBeatTheWheat

IMG_2856About this recipe

Shepherds pie is my all time favourite meal but the one I used to eat (before I found I was sensitive to dairy) had mashed white potato on top covered in cheese. Although I can still and do eat potato and cheese in moderation, I felt like I needed more sweet potato in my life, so I decided to make shepherds pie using these tasty tubers.

Quick and easy, and a total family-pleaser. Go ahead – have seconds! It’s healthy!

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Real Recipe: Chimichurri Braised Short Ribs

Original article published by Davida Kugelmass for The Healthy Maven
For more recipes, inspiration and events, visit www.thehealthymaven.com

Chimichurri Braised Short Ribs-001The Healthy Maven’s blog is all about eating real and unprocessed food, getting creative in the kitchen and leading an active and balanced lifestyle. We could all use a little more kale AND wine in our lives.

About this recipe.

This is a deliciously flavourful dish; an upgrade to your plain ‘ole short ribs. It’s sure to ignite your tastebuds – especially as we transition into BBQ season!

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Real Recipe: Spicy Balsamic Chili

Original article published by Katherine Mossop for KatherineMossop.com

Katherine-Mossop-Spicy-Balsamic-Chili-SOCIAL
Every one has a go-to chili recipe. Some are simple and mild, some are complex and spicy. Some are beef, pork and chicken based and even vegetarian varieties. There are whole chili cook-offs devoted to awarding someone with the best chili. It’s serious stuff. Now, while I wouldn’t be lining up to enter my chili in a contest, I’m partial to thinking that mine is pretty darn good.

About this recipe.

This spicy balsamic beanless variety is one of my favourite ways to make chili. The balsamic vinegar adds just a little sweetness that I find pleasing to my taste buds. I hope you enjoy it, too!

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Real Recipe: Hearty Beef Stew

Original article published by Katherine Mossop for KatherineMossop.com

Beef_Stew_IGAbout this recipe.

There is nothing more comforting than a warm bowl of beef stew on a cold wintry day. Stews are hearty, versatile and satisfying. Their meat and vegetable combos can vary, as can the thickness of its soup-like broth. Low and slow cooking renders tougher cuts of meat into mouth watering deliciousness. Ah yes, my mouth is watering just thinking about it.

The versatility in its nutrition is incredibly varied, from its array of vitamins and minerals from the meat and veg, to its collagen-rich gelatin content depending on whether you use a stock or bone broth as the base. Stews can be whatever you imagine just by changing up your ingredients and spices. Much like soups, they can be good for what ails you.

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The Ultimate Guide to Canadian Meat Labels

By Mario Fiorucci, Co-Founder of The Healthy Butcher

In today’s urban lifestyle, consumers, generally, are disconnected from the original source of their food.  As such, food labels play an integral role towards understanding how a product came to be. Unfortunately, marketers have run rampant for decades, fabricating terms, seals, emblems, and photos that form mental associations of idyllic farm settings, even if the product came out of the worst of factory farms. Confusion is at an all time high. Organic, Grass fed, Grass finished, Corn fed, Grain Fed, Free Range, Pasture Raised, Farm Raised, Natural, Naturally Raised, Antibiotic Free, Raised without Growth Hormones, Sustainable, Humane, Ethical, Certified Angus, Kobe, Berkshire… the list of adjectives to describe meat go on and on. What do they mean?

In this issue we will take you through the most common terms found in Canada to describe meat, and what they actually mean. It is important to note that when googling any of these terms, you will more than likely land on a on U.S. web page, which causes Canadians even more confusion because the terms have different meanings in the U.S. or other countries.

Without further ado, The Healthy Butcher’s Ultimate Guide to Canadian Meat Labels…

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Dry Roasting

By Mario Fiorucci, Co-Founder of The Healthy Butcher

This article was originally published in Tonic Magazine Autumn 2011

 

Foreword

In a previous article I explained how to braise (available here).  Braising is a form of roasting meat using wet heat, “wet” because the cooking is being done in liquid.  While braising is perfect for tougher cuts of meat, it is not appropriate for cooking joints that are tender; the appropriate technique is to dry roast or simply “roast”.

Roasting can be as simple as throwing a cut of meat into the oven and removing when done; unfortunately, simple isn’t always best.  Let’s discuss the three keys to successful roasting.

For a complete reference guide to roasting, click here for our Ultimate Roasting Chart.

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Veal: The Greener (and Rosier) Side

By Mario Fiorucci, Co-Founder of The Healthy Butcher

This article was originally published in Edible Toronto Magazine Winter 2009/2010 Edition

 

Introduction

volume32-veal_photo1This article was the cover story in Edible Toronto’s Winter 2009/2010 edition.  Gail Gordon Oliver, the Publisher and Editor of the magazine, asked me to write an 800 word article on “Red Veal”, a meat that has recently experienced a surge in popularity in the U.S..  Well, 2200 words later I emailed her an article and hoped she wouldn’t notice that it was almost triple the length that was allotted in her Winter edition and only briefly discussed Red Veal.  Thankfully, Gail realized the importance of the topic, published it and made it the cover story.

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Real Recipe: How to BBQ Brisket

By Mario Fiorucci, Co-Founder of The Healthy Butcher

This article was originally published in Tonic Magazine Summer 2011

 

Introduction

If you find yourself in America west of the Mississippi, the word “barbeque” refers to one thing and one thing only – a good ole’ fashioned, slow smoked, pit-barbeque style beef brisket.  Personally, I think making a damn good barbeque brisket is easy , even on a simple gas BBQ, and I will explain how below.  But before southern snipers are aiming at my forehead, I will say this – perfecting barbeque brisket requires a lifetime of experience and is far more complicated than the recipe below.  I bet that even professional multi-award winning barbequers who compete in big circuits and win big money for their barbequed briskets would freely admit they haven’t perfected the brisket; it is simultaneously the easiest and most challenging cut of beef to cook over direct heat (which is one of the reasons the recipe below cheats by using aluminum foil).NewZealandGrassfed-Brisket-Front-FatDown

Before providing the recipe, I need to give credit where credit is due, to The Healthy Butcher’s Head Butcher Dave Meli, who has on multiple occasions, cooked briskets that are beyond words heavenly, and has provided the guts of these instructions.  Even following his every word, my briskets never turn out as good… but I guess it’s the cook’s hands that matter… I still can’t make a tomato sauce as good as my Mamma’s either.

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The Perfect Burger

By Mario Fiorucci, Co-Founder of The Healthy Butcher

Such a brilliant idea—lightly pressing together some good minced beef with a little seasoning, grilling it for five minutes and serving it on a fresh bun with a few choice toppings. I can’t think of many dishes that are so easy to make yet completely transcend the sum of their parts.  Although cheap, mass-produced burgers are horrible, good burgers are culinary works of art.

The following are my rules for making the best burger.

RealFoodToronto-The_Perfect_Burger

A great burger begins with great beef. If you start with a properly raised animal that has roamed around on pasture and been well-fed without added antibiotics or industry by-products, the end result will be excellent.  It doesn’t really matter what cut you use; the key is that you have the right amount of fat—somewhere around 20% (up to 25%, no less than 15%). It just so happens that meat from the chuck (shoulder) of the beef will have the proper amount of fat, but so will brisket, and skirt, and flank, and rib… all great cuts for burger. Proper dry ageing of the beef by your butcher will also vastly improve the taste.

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