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Making the most of your butcher's banter

There are lots of different outlets you can shop for meat nowadays - from supermarkets to farm shops and local markets to deli counters. For lots of families, the weekly food shop includes a trip to the local butcher’s counter.

The 13-19 March, 2017 is National Butcher’s Week and to celebrate, we’ve put together five things you should ask your butcher.

We all know that butchers love to chat, so make the most of your butcher’s knowledge – you never know, they might be able to teach you something new!

Also in this article: 5 things to ask your butcher | Simple guide to the butchers | What is the Quality Standard Mark? | Find a butcher | Hear from the butchers | FREE recipes and cooking tips

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1. What cut of meat do I need?
We’ve all been in that situation where you know what you want to cook but you don’t know which cut of meat is the best for the job. Think of your butcher as a walking encyclopaedia. With literally hundreds of options available, asking them is your best bet to getting the right cut of meat for the job and to suit your budget.

2. How much meat should I buy?
One of the most common things that people are worried about when buying from the local butcher is how much to buy. Simply tell your butcher how many people you’re feeding and they’ll give you an idea of how much you need. It can also be more cost effective as you only buy what you need.

3. Where does the meat come from?
Labels on pre-packed meat make it easier to know where it’s come from. And if you buy Red Tractor labelled food when shopping at a supermarket, you know it’s come from a UK farm. Butchers shops are known for their impressive display counters, but don’t forget to ask the butcher the origin of the meat they are selling. Most butchers will have good relationships with the farms they buy from and might have even visited the farms themselves. Be confident you are backing British farming and putting British meat on your plate.

4. How do I cook it?
Butchers are a great source of knowledge when it comes to telling you more about the less common, but nevertheless tasty cuts of meat. And they might even be on special offer! Don’t be afraid to ask your butcher for some cooking tips – it could be the new family favourite!

5. Can you help prepare the meat?
From de-boning to butterflying most butchers are more than happy to help prepare the meat for you, but if you want to do it yourself they can point you in the right direction and give you tips on how to do it yourself.

Here’s some more information you might find useful:

::Simple guide to the butchers
Download this free guide to find out more about meat cuts, five reasons to shop at a butcher’s and what to look for in your local butchers shop.

::What is the Quality Standard Mark?
Quality standard lamb logo_33407The Quality Standard Mark scheme for beef and lamb provides you with high levels of assurance about the meat you buy and is independently inspected right from the farms the meat comes from through to the shops and restaurants it is sold in. The label provides you with a provenance guarantee so you can be certain where it came from.

Quality Standard beef and lamb is traceable right back to the farms where the livestock were reared. So if your Sunday roast has a Quality Standard label on it with the Union flag you know it comes from a UK farm and if it has the St George’s flag it comes from an English farm.

::Find a quality standard butcher
You can find your nearest quality standard butcher using a postcode search tool from our friends at Simply Beef and Lamb.

Quality standard beef logo_33406::Read and watch more from Andrew, Martin and Paul – three quality standard butchers who will talk you through their tips, advice and the craft of butchery.

::For cooking and carving tips plus a whole host of free recipes visit:

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