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Rod & Kim Creese Butcher's Blog

Tips and offers from your local Gloucester Butcher.

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Break Out the Barbie but get the Temperature Right!

I see we are due another heat wave, or should I say “heat wave”, as our weather forecasters have an unfortunate habit of getting it wrong.

It is the BBQ season, however, and we are bound to get a few decent dry and sunny days.  With the World Cup and Wimbledon coming it could be a flaming June to remember, whatever England might do in Russia.

The key to a good Barbie is temperature and this time I don’t mean the weather.  If you end up with underdone bangers or an overcooked chicken leg it can ruin an otherwise enjoyable occasion. 

I would recommend you get something to test the temperature of your meat so you know exactly when it is properly cooked.  There are a couple of useful gadgets that can help with this.

Firstly, there is something called a Thermapen.  This is simply a widget with a needle that you push into the meat.  A reading of the temperature then appears and you will know how well cooked your meat is.

Tagged in: barbecue chicken meat

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5 Reasons to Shop at your Local Butcher 

I know it is easy to pick up your meat when you do the Big Shop at the supermarket, but in these health-conscious days there are good reasons to pay your local butcher a regular visit.  

Here are 5 good reasons why you should support your butcher:

1. You will know what you are getting.  Now I am not going to name names, but there have been some nasty little stories in the media recently about the provenance of some of the meat that gets sold in larger outlets.  If you are buying from a butcher the chances are he will be able to tell you which local farm the meat is sourced from, possibly even which field!

2. A butcher offers better selection and quality.  When you visit a local butcher you can guarantee you will see varieties and cuts of meat that you simply cannot buy in a supermarket.  Not only that, but the quality will be better too and you will tell that by its superb taste.

Tagged in: butchers meat

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It's British Sandwich Week!

I am pleased to let you all know that British Sandwich Week 2017 is almost upon us.  It runs from 14th to 20th May and is a celebration of this great British tradition. 

The story goes that John Montague, the 4th Earl of Sandwich, ordered cold beef between sliced toasted bread to be brought to him during a card game so that he could carry on playing without interruption.  Although it was common to eat meat with bread, he gave us the concept of eating a sandwich whilst doing something else.

It is estimated that as a nation we buy some 3.5 billion sandwiches each year, a fact that takes some swallowing!  Throughout the land there are various names for our different types of sandwich too; sarnie, bap, buttie, baguette, barm and sangas for example.

Needless to say we recommend you use our cold meats for your sarnies, such as beef, ham or chicken.  However, we also suggest you try some of our delicious accompaniments:

•    Mrs Darlington’s splendid pickles and chutneys
•    Struan Apiaries excellent mustards and chutneys
•    Black’s marvellous cheeses

I look forward to you all popping in to buy your ingredients to celebrate British Sandwich Week.

Tagged in: chicken ham meats sandwich

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Not Just Pie in the Sky!

I love a good homemade pie and I’m pleased to say I know where to get the best – our Hucclecote shop!

Using local ingredients, our pies are rightly famous in this part of the world.  We offer a range of traditional fare including:

•    Beef and onion pie
•    Chicken and ham pie
•    Chicken and mushroom pie
•    Cottage pie
•    Steak and kidney pie

We are also able to supply our beef and onion, chicken and ham and steak and kidney pies in a special large family size.

As the weather is improving you might want something for a picnic or a snack in the garden.  Look no further than our delicious pork pies or a traditional pasty.

Whatever the weather you can’t beat a good tasty pie.

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Easter Treats that aren’t Sweet!

Easter falls next month with Good Friday on 16th April.  No doubt there will be plenty of Easter Eggs and Hot Cross Buns to be consumed but I prefer something more savoury myself.

Now spring is here there is nothing better than a succulent roast lamb with garlic and rosemary. Serve it up with spring cabbage, new season carrots and roast potatoes in gravy made from the meat’s juices and a helping of fresh mint sauce.  Delicious!

Why lamb?  Easter is a Christian festival, of course, and a lamb is strongly symbolically associated with that religion.  Indeed a whole roasted lamb has been a feature of the Pope’s Easter celebrations for centuries.

Lamb also features in other countries Easter celebrations.  In Greece, for example, Easter is one of the largest festivals of the year.  Tradition requires a feast be cooked for family and friends centred on a spit-roasted lamb.

In Ethiopia the main Easter meal is a lamb stew known as beg wot while in Morocco they serve up their lamb with tahini squash gratin.

Personally I’ll stick with my roast.  I might manage an Easter Egg for afters, mind.

Needless to say you’ll be able to get a marvellous joint suitable for roasting from our good selves.

Call in and see the team and I and we’ll help you choose the right treats for your  Easter celebrations

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Celebrate National Butchers’ Week!

As I’m sure you are aware, 13th to 19th March is National Butchers’ Week.  You didn’t know?  Shame on you!

National Butchers’ Week was originated by the trade magazine Meat Trades Journal and its aim is to raise the public’s awareness of their local butchers
There is no doubt that the traditional butcher has become an endangered species in this age of the supermarket and internet.  But are people really satisfied with something in a plastic tray covered in plastic or vac packed lumps of what is described as ‘bacon’ but may well be largely water?

Fortunately there has been an upturn in the industry in recent years with local butchers’ shops making a comeback across the UK.  Increased demand has led to an increase in independent shops of some 40%.  A local butcher can provide so much more than a supermarket meat counter with all cuts of meat available as well as a wealth of knowledge about how to prepare and cook it.

Evidence shows that many youngsters are reluctant to use their local butcher as they feel they do not have the knowledge to make sensible requests and purchases.  National Butchers’ Week aims to counter that by tempting people into their local shop.

Certainly my team and I are always willing to spend time with customers, new or old, and help them make informed choices and purchases.  Please do take advantage and call into our smart refurbished Hucclecote premises. 

You may be surprised at what we can achieve together!

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Fit as a Butcher’s Dog!

Nowadays the phrase “as fit as a butcher’s dog” is taken to mean that the dog is well fed from scraps and titbits by the butcher and is therefore in peak condition.  Or even Peke condition, if of Chinese origin and on the small side.

However, that is not the original meaning of the saying.  Back in 1859 John Camden Hotten defined the phrase in his book A Dictionary of Modern Slang, Cant and Vulgar Words rather differently: 

“To be like a butcher’s dog, that is, lie by the beef without touching it.”

In other words it was a metaphor for being able to be close to something that you could not have. 

All of which brings me round to reminding you that if you want your pet to comply with the modern meaning of the phrase, that is be fit and healthy, you can get fresh dog food from our store.  

We can supply:

•    Beef bones from carcasses from the shop
•    Chicken carcasses
•    Chicken wings
•    Lamb bones from shop carcasses
•    Lamb hearts
•    Ox hearts
•    Ox livers

Feel free to give me a call on 01452 617 173 to chat about your dog’s requirements or pop into our smart refurbished Hucclecote premises.

Incidentally, if you want to see what proper butcher’s dogs looks like, take a look at this to see our own pets, Nero, Nora and Winnie!
http://rkcreese.co.uk/dog-food

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For a Traditional Family Xmas – Keep it Local!

I am a great believer in having a traditional family Xmas and I am pleased to say that we can help with much of what you will need for your festive feasting.

Yes, you can buy your bird at a supermarket but nothing beats the taste of a succulent locally produced free range turkey.

Of course we can supply a turkey or chicken to meet your family’s needs for the Big Day.  If you fancy something a bit different, however, we can help there too.  We can provide you with duck, goose or pheasant, for example, all locally sourced. 

Don’t forget that we also offer plenty of tasty alternatives including beef, lamb, pork, ham and gammon.

What about the leftovers?  I think the cold meat meals are some of my favourites and this year we have some real treats to accompany them.  We have recently become the sole local supplier for Struan Apiaries range of marvellous mustards and chutneys.  Or why not try our selection of Mrs Darlington’s splendid pickles and chutneys?   

Finally when it is time for the traditional turkey curry let us tempt you with our superb selection of curry sauces from The Curry Sauce Company.

To wish all our customers a Merry Xmas we are giving them the chance to win £50 to spend in store with us.  Call in to our smart refurbished Hucclecote premises to place your Xmas order and enter the draw.

 

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New Chutneys Cut the Mustard!

I am pleased to say that we have a new supplier of mustards and chutneys – Struan Apiaries Ltd.

They are a family run business that was started up back in 1974 by Hamish Robertson and his wife Joan.  Today their sons Martin and Nigel run the business, helped by their wives.  The business is based at Conon Bridge in the Scottish Highlands and is recognised as one of the leading suppliers of quality blossom and heather honey.

However, they have other strings to their bow – namely some very tasty chutneys and mustards.  We have been busy sampling them and can recommend, well, just about all of them!

Amongst the chutneys is hot garlic pickle, plum chutney, malt whisky pickle, spiced peach chutney and hot tomato pickle.  Their mustards are wholegrain and include hellish hot chilli, Scottish crunchy mustard and, of course, wholegrain mustard with whisky.   

Don’t forget we also stock Mrs Darlington’s delightful chutneys and preserves and a splendid selection of curry sauces from The Curry Sauce Company.

Why not visit us at our smart refurbished Hucclecote premises and try something tasty!

 

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3 for 2 Ready Meal Bargains!

As we prepare for Xmas (yes, it’s coming) I realised that we will need more space on the freezers so I have come up with a solution to please everybody – 3 for 2 bargains!
We have a large selection of frozen prepared meals which we are offering on a buy three and get the cheapest free basis.  Take a look at what is on offer:


•    Beef, Chicken and Pork kebabs
•    Chicken Curry
•    Chicken Feasts
•    Chicken Kiev
•    Meatballs
•    Stuffed Lamb Breasts
•    Truffles

The meals need no preparation and are ready for cooking in the oven or on the grill or barbecue with your personal selection of vegetables, rice, chips or salad.
We know from past experience that deals like this sell out quickly so pop along to our smart refurbished Hucclecote premises and pick up a bargain.
You’d better hurry…

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Discover the X Factor in Our Sausages!

British Sausage Week celebrates its nineteenth year in 2016 and runs from 31st October to 6th November.

Jonathan Benjamin ‘JB’ Gill, former singer with X Factor runners up and chart topping band JLS, has been chosen as this year’s Banger Ambassador!
JB left the music industry with a string of hit records behind him to set up a farm with his wife Chloe and their son Ace.  They raise pigs, cattle and deer and JB has been a regular on BBCs Countryfile and Down on the Farm programmes.

Not to be left out, JB’s son Ace has created his own recipe for British Sausage Week – Ace’s Pork Sausage Fajita Wraps.

As you may be aware, we pride ourselves on our own sausage recipes and know that they are firm favourites with our customers.  Why not sample our super Cider and Apple range or our majestic Leek and Ginger.  If you are feeling especially daring there are our Hot and Spicy sausages with extra chillies.

Celebrate British Sausage Week by popping down to visit us at our smart refurbished Hucclecote premises and try something a bit different.

RK Creese

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Nice and Cheesey Does It!

I am pleased to announce that we are now stocking a selection of cheeses made by Blacks.

Based in Shrewsbury, they describe themselves as ‘a rather bonkers brand of Cheese makers, lovers and eaters’.  They aim to supply the best artisan cheeses from the UK and the continent and I have to say I am impressed with what I have tasted so far.

To begin with we will be stocking these cheeses:

•    Caramelised Onion and Rioja Mature Cheddar – makes my mouth water just saying the words!  Mature cheddar, onions, Rioja and just a dash of French brandy.
•    Extra Mature Cheddar – one of their best sellers, this is a creamy, sweet tasting cheddar.
•    Irish Whiskey and Stem Ginger Mature Cheddar – based on a superb mature cheddar, the magic ingredients are a delightful Irish whiskey and some stem ginger to give it a bit of bite.  Sheer genius!

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Why Not Go the Whole Hog!

I can guarantee success for you at your next big social or corporate event if you let us supply you with one of our renowned hog roasts!

Our locally sourced pigs are especially lean and meaty, cooked and prepared in a traditional manner in a baker’s oven in Malvern.  The freshly prepared pig is stuffed with our own homemade sausage meat to ensure it is moist and flavoursome.

We can supply the hog for you to carve and serve if you wish and can bone it to make that process easier.  Alternatively we will arrange the setting up, serving and cleaning up for you.

We pride ourselves on providing everything you need for a spectacular feast: bread rolls, delicious condiments and side dishes can all be supplied together with specially prepared salads – just let us know what you require.

If you do not fancy a hog roasts we are happy to supply other types of meat instead.

Give us a call on 01452 617173 and we can chat through your specific requirements. 

Rod and Kim Creese, butchers; local, traditional and friendly.

 

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A Banger for Every Occasion!

It’s hard to beat a British banger and we are pleased to offer our own home made varieties.

Roddy makes them himself and, as you’d expect from us, we use all locally sourced ingredients.  Try these to tempt your taste buds:

Gloucester Mix – Roddy uses locally sourced pork, apples and special herbs to make these succulent specials.  Guaranteed to have you coming back for more.

Cider and Apple – Gloucestershire is famous for its orchards and cider making, and these beauties utilise some of the best apples and cider around. 

Leek and Ginger - thought to have originated in Dorset’s New Forest, this sausage combines local pork, the warmth of ginger and the fresh zest of leek to produce a truly magical taste.

Hot and Spicy – fancy something a little more spicy?  Roddy adds chillies to these lovelies, but not enough to make them too hot.  A suitably subtle spicy sausage. 

My mouth is watering just thinking about them.  Pop in and see us at our smart refurbished Hucclecote premises, give Roddy and the team a call on 01452 536942 or browse our website rkcreese.co.uk.

Rod and Kim Creese, butchers; local, traditional and friendly.

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Hello – Is It Meat You’re Looking For?

International superstar Lionel Richie appeared at Gloucester’s Kingsholm Stadium on Sunday 26th June and we had a vital role to play!

We have been asked by the caterers, Saucery Catering, to provide them with meat which they prepared for the crew and support act on the day.  

When asked, we naturally replied “Easy, on a Sunday morning.”  In fact, we could supply them all night long if necessary.

The support act is Corinne Bailey Rae and her band who promoted her new album, The Heart Speaks in Whispers.

We have been asked to supply:

8kg pork sausages

26 lamb leg steaks 

10kg pork loin

30 Cumberland ring sausages 

6 kg of diced neck of lamb

That should see them through!

You don’t have to be a star to appreciate the taste of our meat though.  Pop in and see us at our smart refurbished Hucclecote premises, give Roddy and the team a call on 01452 536942 or browse our website rkcreese.co.uk.

Rod and Kim Creese, butchers; local, traditional and friendly.

 

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Fire Up the Barbie for Flaming June!

I know I may be being a bit optimistic, but the long range forecast predicts some scorching weather in the UK this June.

Fortunately, there are plenty of sporting events going on to provide excuses for getting friends and family round for a barbecue.

•    Football – this time in Euro 2016 we have Northern Ireland, the Republic and Wales as well as England to cheer on.  They must win sometimes, surely.  It kicks off on 10th June with the final on 10th July.

•    Horse racing – 4th June is Derby Day at Epsom and Royal Ascot runs from 14th to 18th June.

•    Cricket - Sri Lanka are touring and the third Test Match against England starts on 9th June.  There are also one day internationals on 21st, 24th, 26th and 29th June and 2nd July.

•    Rugby Union – there are three sets of summer international matches in June involving England, Ireland, Scotland and Wales taking on the likes of Australia, Japan, New Zealand and South Africa.

•    Formula One – Grand Prix in Canada on 12th June and Azerbaijan on 19th June.

•    Wimbledon – this annual favourite runs from 27th June until 10th July.  Can Murray surprise the doubters?

If you are having a barbecue, don’t settle for a boring selection pack from your supermarket.  Make it a special event with a trip to Rod and Kim at our refurbished Hucclecote shop.

Have a chat a few days before and select one of Roddy’s marinades to give your meat a unique taste.  We also supply burgers, including lamb and mint or chicken and leek, and sausages such as hot and spicy or Scrumpy Jack cider and apple!  To round off, you can add a selection of Mrs Darlington’s pickles and condiments.  All in all a tasty summer treat of something different.     

Give Roddy and the team a call on 01452 536942 or browse our website rkcreese.co.uk.

Rod and Kim Creese, butchers; local, traditional and friendly.

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The Games Afoot!

We still haven’t put the winter fully behind us so there is plenty of reason to cook something substantial before we hit the BBQ and salad season.

Game often gets forgotten but is a wonderful source of protein.  Generally it has had a more varied diet than other animals, helping itself to a host of wild berries, grains grasses and grubs.  This is part of the reason why it has the complex flavour that it does.

Pheasant, for example, offers a much more flavoursome alternative to chicken.  Pan fried at a high heat, venison can give a decent steak a run for its money in terms of taste.  We shouldn’t ignore the humble rabbit, either, especially tasty in a slow cooked casserole.

Braising or pot roasting is the best method of cooking the birds.  Do remember to keep them thoroughly basted and moist, though.

We can also supply wild boar, duck and goose and we are always happy to provide cooking tips to help you get the best from our meats.  

Pop along and visit us at our smart refurbished Hucclecote premises, give us a call on 01452 536942 or browse our website rkcreese.co.uk.

Rod and Kim Creese, butchers; local, traditional and friendly.

 

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Try Our ‘Triffic Truffles!

We are always on the lookout for new and exciting products and I’m pleased to say we have come up with an absolute winner – our very own Truffles!

Now I’m not talking about the fancy French fungus nor some chocolate delicacy.  I am referring to authentic meat truffles.  They are made from the finest minced meat, mixed with finely chopped fresh peppers and then coated with our authentic marinade, made to our own secret recipe!

Even though I say it myself, they are delicious!

We have three different fillings: 

Beef – made utilising our burger mix

Lamb – also from our burger mix

Pork – this one using our sausage mix

Only £2.49 each!

So come on down and grab some for a rather different supper or lunch.  Best be quick, though – they are selling like hot, well, truffles!

Pop along and visit us at our smart refurbished Hucclecote premises, give us a call on 01452 536942 or browse our website rkcreese.co.uk.

Rod and Kim Creese, butchers; local, traditional and friendly.

 

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Look Out – Flying Pig!

We thought it was about time we had the van repainted.

“Shall we go for something subtle?”

I thought about that for all of three seconds.

“Nah, bright pink!”

Fortunately those good people at Severn Signs were able to come up with just the right shade!

Do look out for us while we are out delivering – give us a toot if you spot us!  Let’s face it, you’re unlikely to miss us!

I think it gets the message across in an eye-catching manner which is exactly what we wanted to achieve.  It also emphasises our core values – traditional, local and friendly.

So keep your eyes peeled as we fly through the lanes.  You will see a pig fly!

You might have noticed that we've had a shiny and bright new sign at the shop too!  We'll keep "Flying the Pig"!

Pop along and visit us at our smart refurbished Hucclecote premises, give us a call on 01452 536942 or browse our website rkcreese.co.uk.

Rod and Kim Creese, butchers; local, traditional and friendly.

 

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MacMillan Event - Can you join us?


We're all about helping out when it comes to MacMillan Cancer Support.  Everyone knows someone in their life that's been touched by Cancer, so we like to help spread the word. So if you'd like to support MacMillan and have a great night out ... why not come along to an Evening with Jon Culshaw which includes a Posh Ploughman's supper and a performance by Uke N Smile at Sir Thomas Rich's School, Oakleaze, Gloucester, GL2 0LF on Saturday 5th March 2016 - 7:00 - 7:30pm.  £20 per person. For tickets, simply phone Macmillan on 01452 857077.

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