There was a time when families would live off their Sunday roast for the rest of the week. This not only minimised waste but ensured best value for money.
Now a Yorkshire farmer and meat wholesaler is launching a campaign to get people to do just that.
Rawdon-based John Penny & Sons has launched a Quest for Best: The Meat Crusade.
The campaign to encourage consumers to go back to their local butchers, talk to them about making their money go further and cook quality meat dishes at home. The key is to buy locally from a butcher who can advise on the best cut of meat for purpose.
I decided to check out if it works. A piece of beef costing about £40 can easily stretch to five different meals if you add vegetables. The best bit for me however, and for those not wanting to eat red meat every day is that dishes such as cottage pie freeze wonderfully. Why not give it a try at home?
Traditional Roast Beef with Yorkshire Puddings
4kg beef topside or any other roasting joint, 25g beef dripping – ask your butcher for this, ready prepared mustard, black pepper, 125g plus 1 tblsp plain flour, sifted, 1 medium size egg, 200ml milk, 75ml plus 2 tblsp water, 300ml beef stock, oil
Preheat the oven to Gas 6, 200°C, fan 180°C, 400°F. Place the beef on a rack in a roasting tin. Rub the dripping, mustard and pepper over the joint. Cook the beef for 20 min per 500g, plus 20 min.
While the beef is roasting make the Yorkshire pudding batter, put 125g of the flour in a bowl, then add the egg and half the milk. Beat until smooth and add the remaining milk and 75ml of water. When the meat has cooked, drain off all but two large spoonfuls of the meat juices into a small pan. Remove the beef from the oven and cover well with foil and clean tea towels and leave to rest while the Yorkshire puddings are cooking.
Increase the oven temperature to Gas 7, 220°C, fan 200°C, 425°F. Heat a 12 section pattie tin in the oven, add some oil to each pattie and allow to heat for a few minutes and then pour the batter into the hot pattie tines.
Cook the puddings for 20 min or until risen and crisp. To make the gravy, skim the fat off the reserved juices in the pan and bring them to the boil. Blend the flour with the water and stir in. Cook for 2-3 min, and add the beef stock. Simmer gently for a further 2-3 min and serve with the beef and the Yorkshire puddings.
Bubble and squeak
1 onion, finely chopped, 4 rashers streaky bacon, cut into small pieces, 450g leftover mashed potato, 300g leftover mixed cooked vegetables chopped into bite size pieces, salt and pepper to taste, 25g butter, 2 tbsp plain flour
Combine the mash and vegetables in a large mixing bowl. On a low heat melt half the butter in a frying pan and cook the onion until translucent, add the bacon and cook until crispy. Using a slotted spoon remove the onions and bacon from the pan and add to the mash mixture. Don’t clean out the pan, you want to keep the flavour from the bacon and butter. Using your hands, take golf ball sized portions and cover them lightly with flour, melt the remaining butter in the pan. Place the patties, no more than four at a time in the pan so you have room to flip them and fry until golden brown. Serve with slices of cold beef and pickles.
1 large onion sliced, 50g unsalted butter, 500g of diced leftover roast beef, 8fl oz beef gravy, 4 diced cooked carrots, 150g garden peas, cooked, salt and pepper, to taste, 500g mashed potato, 2 tsp English mustard, 1 bay leaf, salt and pepper
Preheat oven to 200°C, 392°F then melt half the butter in a frying pan and add the onions, cook on a gentle heat until translucent. Add the diced beef, gravy, carrots, peas, mustard and bay leaf. Heat through; season with salt and pepper Transfer to a baking dish, spoon the potatoes over. Bake for 30 min and serve with seasonal vegetables and extra gravy.
Spicy beef and noodle salad
300g of leftover roast beef sliced into chunks, 2 shallots thinly sliced, 2 plum tomatoes thinly sliced, 2 cloves of garlic finely minced, 1 small bunch of fresh coriander finely chopped, 2 tbsp Thai Sweet Chilli sauce, juice of 1 lime, 2 tsp Thai Fish Sauce, salt, 1 cucumber thinly sliced, 1 bunch spring onions sliced lengthways, 150g dried egg noodles
Cook noodles as per the packet instructions. Whisk together the salt, lime juice, chilli sauce, garlic, shallots and fish sauce. Mix the beef, cucumber and spring onion in with the dressing and taste, add extra chilli sauce or lime as desired. Drain the noodles and add to the beef mixture and serve.
Barbecue beef sandwiches
500g leftover roast beef, 2 shallots finely diced, 1 tbsp olive oil, 5 tbsp BBQ sauce, 5 tbsp ketchup, 2 tsp Tabasco sauce, 2 tsp Worcestershire Sauce, ¾ pint beef stock, salt and pepper, 8 white sliced sandwich buns
In a large, heavy pot, heat olive oil on medium heat. Add the shallots and cook until translucent. Add the beef stock, ketchup, Tabasco, Worcestershire and barbecue sauce, increase heat to medium high and simmer for 30 min.
Add the beef to the sauce and simmer for 5 min. Serve on the buns with salad of your choice.
All leftover beef cut into small strips, 2 tbsp olive oil, 1 tbsp white wine vinegar, 2 sliced oranges (seeds and pith removed), 1 tsp paprika, ½ tsp chilli powder, 1 packet of flour wraps
In a bowl, combine the beef with the olive oil, white wine vinegar, orange, paprika and chilli. Taste and adjust seasoning as required, cover with clingfilm and pop in the fridge for at least an hour for the flavours to infuse. Serve in the wraps with a salad of your choice.
Visit www.johnpenny.co.uk for more information about the company and its Quest for Best: the Meat Crusade campaign.