5 reasons why you should avoid store made ground meat and why you should ground your own!

Ground meat is a popular protein in many meals around the world. People will eat it weekly  “unless you’re a vegetarian”. Ranging from tacos to hamburgers, it’s a main component in most meals. In this post I will be going over 5 reasons why you should give up buying ground meat from a store and start grinding your own meat.


1. Not every meat department is honest!

There are meat departments out there with great people running them. Sometimes there are some that are not well run. When meat is over ordered it becomes old, and over produced. When this occurs, the ground beef might not be fresh and it will look old. In some cases, there are butchers who regrind old ground beef.

 (Above) is a package of “old ground beef”.

When ground beef is old, the bacteria count will go up and you can get sick from it.

You will be able to see the color of these packages and if they look old, or if the date is close to being expired, avoid it!

Always check the date on every package that you buy!


(Above) A tube of ground beef that is used to mix/suplament with ground beef.

2. Additives

( The USDA suggested ” A product that contains pink slime shouldn’t be consumed in large amounts due to it’s exposure to ammonia gas”.)

  In recent years, there has been alot of talk about supermarkets and fast food chains putting in additives into ground beef when they don’t have enough meat to grind. Pink slime, or (lean, finely textured beef) was in the public eye when ABC NEWS did a story called “pink slime. It was reported that, at the time, about 70 percent of the national supermarkets were using this method.

A additive like this will raise or lower the fat percentage that’s in ground beef. This filler was used in other beef products around the nation. The USDA stated “A product that contains pink slime shouldn’t be consumed in large amounts due to it’s exposure to ammonia gas”. The ammonia gas is used to kill off all the bacteria. The European Union has banned the consumption of pink slime and doesn’t see if it fit for human consumption!

I wonder what it would do us?

 (Above) A package of prepackaged organic ground beef.

3. Prepackaged ground meat

{There are alot of different brands of prepackaged meats and ground beef. I will be doing a experiment in the future with prepackaged meat to show how unnatural (map) prosses is.}

They range from the basic cuts of beef to the organic/grassfed cuts of beef. The packages will look red and inviting. They look great, but you might ask yourself, if the shelf life is so long, how does it look so fresh. Just like pink slime products, prepackaged meats go through a process that kills the bacteria in it.

Prepackaged meat under goes a process called gas packing. Gas packing (modified atomosphic packaging) or (MAP). In this process the air is taken out of the package and it’s replaced with a mixture of gasses. The gasses are a blend of oxygen, nitrogen, carbon monoxide and carbon dioxide. These blends of gasses help preserve the meat by killing the bacteria and preserving the meats color.

It’s unclear if this method is harmful or not, although USDA doesn’t require labels stating that a prepackaged meat product has undergone this process.

4.Because we have a little artisan in all of us!

A lot of you love to experiment with your food. Whether you smoke your meat or make your own pasta, humans feel more fulfilled, when we’re able to create! I have my own mix of cuts of beef that I use to make my own ground beef (that I will be sharing at the end of this article), but you can experiment with mixing different cuts of beef when you own a personal grinder.

You can grind different cut’s to create the ultimate burger, meatballs or meat loaf. Most cuts like Shoulder London broil and sirloin go on sale often “If you are lucky enough, you can even catch a good brisket sale”! When these cuts of beef go on sale they can be even cheaper than the price of ground beef in the store.

Chefs will do this often and people will easily pay 20$ a hamburger out of these cuts of beef.

You get high end quality for pennies on the dollar! 

Most personal grinders come with a sausage making attachment. You will be able to be a mad scientist and create your own sausages out of whatever you want.

5. Personal grinders are a great tool for hunters:



  If you’re a hunter than a personal grinder is perfect for you! You can grind any animal so it’s a no brainier. Whether it’s deer, turkey, or a boar it can be ground. I have a lot of friends that make their own burgers out of venison (deer meat).

(Here is a list below of grinders I recommend )

hand crank:

  Hand crank grinders are old school. Your grandparents probably had one and they might still have one. They can be a little tough to use, because they require mechanical effort. They are easy to clean and store away easily. Hand crank grinders are inexpensive and can cost less than 25$

If this is one you might be interest in click here

Midrange electric grinder:

Electric grinder are easy to use. They come with many attachments and are great for basic home use. I would recommend this for someone who is new to using a grinder. The one I suggest, here goes for 65$. It’s a good one and you will get alot use from this grinder.

If this interests you click here .

Higher end personal grinder:

Here is a top of the line personal grinder. For $220, you will have a greater grind volume than the other grinders that I have mentioned. It’s great if like doing things in bulk or if you process your own livestock.

If this type of grinder click here 

My secret mixture of beef to make ground beef out of is 33% Shoulder London broil, 33% Sirloin steak, and 33% brisket or 33% of a deckle”.

After eating this you will never buy store made ground beef again!

If you have any questions or insights about this post, leave a comment.

Thanks for your support,

The Hamptons butcher

Looking for something different for dinner? Try these 5 cuts of meat to excite your friends and family.

We all have come across the same question each day… “What’s for dinner?” or “what do you want to eat?”

Its annoying, and it’s a question we all can never seem to satisfy. 

In this article I will go over different cuts of meat for you, and for your family to enjoy without feeling like they’re eating the same old thing!


Flat iron/chicken steak.

  A Flank iron steak you might see out at a restaurant or you might have seen it on the shelf of your local supermarket. It’s one you have probably seen before, but you have never taken it home. It’s a delicious cut of beef that comes from the neck (chuck) of a cow. The flat iron steak is a thin Yiddish cut of beef. One steak will serve 2 people, but if you’re greedy like me you can eat the whole piece yourself.

A single package weighs less than a pound so it’s not really a big steak. It can be either grilled or cooked in a pan. Being thin it cooks fast, so cook it on a medium flame for 5 minutes on each side is all you need.

Flat iron steaks are cut horizontally, while the chicken steaks are cut virticaly. Both come from the same piece of meat but cut diffently.

 Chicken steak 

No! It doesn’t come from a Chicken! Chicken steaks are another great steak. Popular among central Americans, a chicken steak is something different that will be pleasing to your family. The chicken/flat iron steak are not that expensive. They both range from 4-6$ a pound. As with the flat iron steak, the chicken steak is easy to cook and should be either grilled or pan fried.

There is a membrane in this cut of meat that you will have to cut around. It is in the center of the steak (as in the photo above).

Skirt steak

This one of my personal favorites! The skirt steak comes from the inner wall of the rib cage. It’s a long ribbon of beef that is covered by a membrane. A butcher has to peel the membrane off to get to the skirt steak inside. I feel this preserves the meat and the fat that comes with it, that makes it taste so good.

The texture of the skirt steak is a little chewy but tender. A package of skirt steak will weigh about a 1 1/2-2 lbs . I feel a package will only serve two people. Skirt steak will shrink a little while its being cooked. Servings one medium rare is the only way to go. It’s a thin cut of beef, so keep your eye on it while you are cooking it. The best way to cook a skirt steak is either in a pan or on a grill. Six minutes on each side should be more than enough.

Sirloin tip steak

 
” I feel it’s one of the best cuts of beef ” 

The Sirloin tip steak is a very uncommon cut of beef. I feel it’s one of the best cuts of beef! It’s extremely tender with a lot of grain, and with a great balance of fat.

This cut comes from the the top cap of the Sirloin. It has a nice layer of fat that I believe is what gives it, it’s amazing flavor.

Sirloin tip steak costs between 6$ to 9$ a pound. A pound will usually net 4 steaks, while a whole cap with net about 8. I would say a 1 1/2 pounds will feed a family of 3.

The best way to cook a Sirloin tip steak is on the grill. You can also cook them in a pan or cut it into small pieces and make beef stroganoff out of them.

 Oxtails

 Oxtails are a great meal on a winter’s day. If you enjoy a hardy soup with a great broth, this is your ticket!

It goes well with all vegetables. If you cook it in a pot or crock pot, it’s all the same. If you don’t own one, click here . For under 25$ there is no reason why you shouldn’t.

There’s a lot of health benefits from oxtails. Cultures from around the world regard them highly. Oxtails are great for joint health, it also helps boost your immune system, and  can help over come food intolerance you might suffer from. It’s been also known to help people with allergies.
Thank you for checking me out! If you enjoyed this article please like and share!

Thanks, The Hamptons butcher

5 ways to get the most out of your London broil. 

The ” The London broil” is a staple meal for most Americans”.


In this post I will be going over 5 different ways you can get the most out of your London broil.

I’m a butcher and at least once a week my family and I will eat London broil for dinner. It’s inexpensive and it’s usually on sale. A 2 pound piece of London broil can serve a family of 5 for less then 10$.

It’s a lean piece of meat that can be cooked in multiple ways. Instead of the usual ways, I will be adding some new ideas into your dinner menu.

Round cubes/stew 

You can take a London broil and have your butcher cut into cubes. The size of the cubes depends on yourself. Smaller cubes are best for stew, while the bigger ones are good for Shish kabobs. Stew meat and cubes of beef for Shish kabobs tend to cost alot more per pound than a London broil. Having your butcher do this for you will save you alot of money.

Cubed steak 

  A cubed steak is another great way to get the most out of your London broil. A London broil that weighs 1 1/2 lbs will net about 5-6 cubed steaks. Cubed steaks, “minute steak” cook fast. It takes about 4 minutes for each side in a hot pan to cook them . You can even bread them and fry them “chicken fried steak”! Normally cubed steaks will go for above 6$ a pound in your local supermarket, while a London broil on sale cost as little as 3$ a pound. It’s a great deal if London broil is on sale. Most supermarkets don’t charge to have this done, so take advantage of your butcher!

 Stir fry 

 Stir fry is another way to transfrom  your London broil into something different you will enjoy. Cut into thin (shoe string like) strips, just like they do in your favorite asain restaurants. Just add a couple of vegetables and you can have a healthy, hardy meal for under $12. You can attempt to do this yourself, or just ask your butcher do do this for you.

Pepper steak 

 Pepper steak is great way to go to get the most out of your London broil! The London broil is cut into strips and are about a fingers length in size. Just like the cubed steak, the pepper steak sells for around $6.lb. Having you or your butcher do this to your London broil saves a lot money. The best way to cook pepper steak I think is with onions, mushrooms and noodles.

Lean ground beef 

A package of lean ground beef could be had out of your London broil. One London broil is as lean as a package of 85% lean ground beef. Your butcher should be able to do this, but we use a industrial grinder and it’s hard to grind just one package. Being a industrial meat grinder, we grind our beef in bulk. A little bit of your London broil will be lost if you have your butcher grind it for you. I have a personal grinder a that works great. You can grind pork, veal and lamb as well. Some people prefer to grind thier own meat, so they know exactly what they’re eating. If you are in search of a good personal meat grinder click the link below. They’re are handy and don’t cost much. VonShef Digital Electric Stainless Steel Meat Grinder Mincer Sausage Maker 

 

: To learn how to never pick out bad ground beef, just click here

 

 For a interesting, inexpensive meal, have your butcher butterfly a London broil

I butterfly my London broil and roll it up “no jokes please” and add provolone cheese and spinach. You can add anything you like, you can even add bacon or other vegetables. All you need is string and your favorite ingredients.

Thanks for coming by and reading this post.

I hope this was helpful and if it was please like — share. 

Thanks again,

The Hamptons butcher 

5 types of meat for all of my Spartans out there.

I know a lot of you work hard, play hard and most of all you train hard! 
When you train hard, protein is a essential part your diet. 

 

  There has been a lot of talk about how red meat raises a males testosterone. Consumed moderately, it can be beneficial to your diet. There are all kinds of red meat that are lean, will promote muscle growth, and most of all “taste great”!

If you’re not into beef, it’s ok. There are other types of meat that will give you the protein that you need. Chicken, turkey and pork have lean cuts also that will help you out with variety in your diet.

Flank steak 

  Flank steaks are amazing! It’s a perfect cut of beef for the grill. The fat content for a whole flank steak (the entire piece) is about 32 grams, while the protein content for a whole flanks steak is about 106 grams. A whole flank wieghs about 2lbs . That’s  very lean for a cut of red meat!

The price for a flank steak ranges from 5.99 lb (on sale) to 7.99 lb (off sale). A whole flank steak will serve about 3 people. It mixes well with vegetables​, quinoa, and brown rice.

90% ground beef 

  90% lean ground beef can easily be found anywhere and breed selections of ground beef are abundant. Whether you like grassfed, Angus or all natural beef, they’re easy to find. It’s also inexpensive. Priced under $6 a pound, it won’t breaking the bank to get lean ground beef.

Being lean, 90% lean ground beef has about 200 calories, 24 grams of protein, and 11 grams per 4 onces. That’s about a hamburger pattie size of beef. Who doesn’t like a hamburger?

{You can also learn more about ground beef by clicking here!}

If you’re a person who questions “how lean store grade ground beef is”, check out this personal grinder. It’s capable of grinding all kinds of meat, and you can make your own sausage with it also!

 

Bonless center cut pork loin 

Pork is usually known for having a high fat content, but a center cut pork loin (ccpl) is a leaner cut of pork. If you trim a ccpl well, you will have a lean cut of meat with a high level of protein. A ccpl that has been trimmed will, can be tough if it’s over cooked. I feel for the best result, you should cook it in a crock pot or roast it in your oven. 

The nutritional facts for the ccpl goes as followed. There is about 8 grams of fat, 24 grams of protein that equates to 170 calories form a 4 once serving. There is also 515 mg of patasium.

You can serve your ccpl as a whole roast or have your butcher cut it into chops for you. They’re on sale a lot and can go from 1.99 lb (on sale) to 4.99lb (off sale).

If your interested in learning more about boneless center cut pork loin click here.

Bonless turkey breast.

   Turkey breast is another good option for lean protein. It has less saturated fat than red meat does. A butterflied breast ( as in the photo above)  is easy to grill or roll it up and add your favorite ingredients to make a pinwheel out of it. You can keep your bonless turkey breast whole, butterflied, or cut into cutlets. You can also have you butcher cut it into small cubes and make a soup with it.

The bonless turkey breast is a friend to any diet! At 130 calories per 4 ounce serving size, you get 28 grams of protein and .50 grams of fat. It’s the lowest amount of calories and the highest and of protein per serving than any of the meats that are mentioned.

Most of the time bonless turkey costs less than 5 $ a pound. A average package is about 2 pounds. Most supermarkets will cut up turkeys, so they’re easy to come by.

Boneless chicken thighs 

Boneless/skinless chicken thighs (bsct) are not a as lean as chicken breast, but they’re high in protein. The little extra fat is good for flavor. A customer of mine who is a bodybuilder told me about this. If you, or if you have your butcher trim off the extra fat, it will make it leaner.

(Bsct) cost less than 3$ a pound. They’re amazing in soup or to put into a crock pot. The calories for a (bsct) goes as followed… In a 4oz serving size you get 4.5 grams of fat, 22 grams of protein that will add 130 Calories to your diet. When I saw the numbers myself I was surprised. I thought the fat content would be higher.
I hope this article is helpful. If you would like learn or see posts on other cuts of meat just message me ! I will be glad to help!

Thanks for all your support, The Hamptons butcher

Dry aging a Loin of beef: part 2

   


28 days is finally up! It‘s been hard to watch my loin of beef age and not able to eat it. The process was simple and required only a few items and time.
In part 2 of “dry aging a Loin a of beef” I will be going over how to trim the loin, how to cut around the bone and the easiest way to cut it into steaks. When you trim your loin , you don’t want to over trim it. Meat is expensive and you don’t want any to go to waste.

This is the first bone i cut around.

Cutting around the bones:

   Always face the knife away from you while trimming and de-boning a piece of meat. I can’t stress this enough and it will save your fingers. Always cut your meat on a cutting board. This keeps the meat from sliding around. Place the loin upside down with the fat against the board. You will use the blade of your knife to separate the bone from the meat. You will have to do this in 3 parts. Once all the bones are taken out, it’s considered Boneless.

The 1st part is to scoop out the front bone.

The Loin of beef with the front bone taken off.

After the front bone is scooped out , you’ll need to get the three little ones in the middle, and then the bones that are on the bottom. The bones in the middle and on the bottom take a little work to get out.

These bones are in the middle and you will need to use the tip of the knife to get around them. * Keep you finger away from the blade.

 

The exposed meat, and the meat around the bones dry up and become tough. It’s best to take your time and go slow.

The “bottom bone” that I removed. I put the tip of the knife under this bone to separate it.

   Warning ;  The dried meat is tough so be careful and cut away from yourself and watch your fingers!  

The dried out, outer part of the loin of beef that will be trimmed off.


Now you’re ready to trim the dried up meat away. 

As the same way you remove the bones, you will trim off the fat. The blade of the knife should be facing away from you. Take off thin slivers of the dried beef with a long stroke. Doing it with little Stokes will on make it look messy.

I found it’s easiest to start trimming, is with face of the loin. After the face, I will trim the outer fat and any dried up dark spots. Once you have trimed the outer part you are left with a soft tender center. Slice your steaks to a width you desire. I cut mine at around a half to three quarters of a inch thick.

The loin of beef with the dried out meat removed. look at the beautiful color of the center.

.“When you cook your steaks you have to be careful”.

Dry aged steaks cook faster than non-dry aged. So, when you cook your steaks, you have to be careful! I cooked mine in a pan for 5 minutes on each side. I cooked them on a medium flame. Just rub a little olive oil and add a  little salt/pepper. You can grill your steaks also, but you have to cut them a inch thick or better. This will keep you from over cooking them.


Quick tips;

1. Make sure you use a cutting board and always trim/cut away from your fingers 

2. Make sure you have a sharp knife (for one i suggest click here) and a good cutting board click here.

3. Don’t over cook your meat. Medium rare is way to serve a dry age steak.

4. Enjoy your efforts!

* Disclaimer!! If you try this at home, use extreme caution! I am a professional and still get cut from time to time. You are responsible for yourself if you try this at home!

Thanks for reading, if your enjoyed this article please like and share.

The Hamptons butcher