Howdy, thanks for stopping by the MWM Online Store and welcome to my Blog & Country Kitchen Recipes!
My name is Sara and I live on a farm with my family at Birregurra, Victoria, the heartland of the bountiful regional food hub of the Western District!
My husband Justin & I are the proud owners of the iconic local bespoke Butchery & Produce store, MidWest Meats which now incorporates the Online "Country Produce Pantry".
I created MWM Online Country Produce Pantry to promote and sell legitimately locally farmed "paddock to plate" ethically & farmed produce to others that are concerned with food source and giving our local farmers credit for their amazing produce.
The produce we sell is produced by my family, my neighbours and reputable farmers in and around Birregurra.
We have a 100km localism ethos, that keeps the food in the Country Produce Pantry local, fresh and community based.
I have been working in the Meat Industry owning and operating Bespoke Butcheries with my husband Justin, since I completed my studies at Orange Agricultural College back in the "hay" day. Studies which I furthered at Sydney University, and then Queensland University!
My areas of expertise is quite simply FOOD! Farming food, sourcing ethically farmed foods, butchering, preparing & cooking seasonal locally sourced food!
My passion is enjoying quality ingredients with family and friends and knowing others are doing the same.
I believe everyone can afford fresh wholesome food, and the more people that value local food source, the more affordable it will become.
In order to enjoy food, we need to respect and understand it's many complexities. Once we understand where and how our food is grown, we have a greater ability to prepare amazing delicious meals for family and friends.
This BLOG is designed to give you all the tips and tricks of the trade and have y'all smiling each and every meal!
Stay in touch ~ find out about super deals, cooking tricks & tips & whats been cooking in #mycountrykitchen
Sign up to my E~Newsletter "The Bull Sheet", it has tips, tricks & heaps of savings to make your country produce taste even better!
It's all about the American craze of festive Turducken in my Country Butcher Shop this year. Each year we prepare more and more of this speciality poultry roast for clients.
As previously mentioned I am a huge fan of the Webber Kettle when cooking large poultry such as Turkey & Turducken. Please refer to your BBQ manual if thats the way you'd like to roll.
This article focuses on a traditional oven roasting method which allows everyone to have a go at cooking a Turducken feast! Lets face it, we all have an oven, even though on a super hot Chrissy day on the farm it's the last place I want to hang out.
As with any of my cooking instructions please use as a tried and tested guide, as ovens may vary in heat distribution and temperature control. Always use my "No Fail" doneness tests and whenever possible a Meat Thermometer.
What is a Turducken?
A turducken is a semi deboned turkey stuffed with a de-boned duck that’s stuffed with, yes, a de-boned chicken.
The turkey still has its legs and wings – however the rest is all meat, layered at each layer with a our very own homemade cranberry and chestnut seasoning.
The MidWest Meats Turducken is prepared to order and generally weighs at least 5kg.
Cooking a Turducken is easy, it follows the same cooking principals as a Turkey. Its all about length of cooking time and making sure your internal temperature is spot on so you know the inside of the Turducken is cooked.
I like to layer some bacon or prosciutto on top of the bird to keep the breast moist until the final browning of the breast. I do this as well as baste, however that is completely up to you.
Instructions on How To Roast Your 5kg Turducken:
- Pre-heat oven to 170°c.
- Transfer your Turducken to a deep baking tray and massage the outer bird with a simple Basting Marinade of 4 tbs olive oil, 60g melted butter, 2 cloves of fresh garlic roughly chopped, 6 sprigs of thyme, 1 tablespoon Maple Syrup, sea salt and cracked pepper.
- Add a cup of vegetable or chicken stock to the bottom of the baking tray. (This will keep your turducken moist and succulent as well as assist with basting juices and extending the gravy)
- Place your turducken in the oven covered loosely with foil to stop the skin from burning and drying out.
- You need to bake your turducken for approximately 40min per kilo. Your 5kg turducken will take approximately 3hours to roast.
- Remove your roast every 20 – 40mins and baste it with the cooking juices that are in the bottom of the baking tray.
- After 2 hours probe with your Meat Thermometer, or skewer to start testing for "doneness".
- Remove the foil completely from your turducken for the final 40 mins to brown the breast.
- If unsure, your turducken is cooked when juices run clear after being pierced in the breast with a skewer.
- Allow your turducken to rest in a warm place for approximately 20 minutes before carving. This will ensure that the juices have settled and will make the meat very succulent.
- While your turducken is resting, strain the juices from the baking tray to make a rich accompanying gravy. Serve it along with my simple Christmas Pear & Cranberry Relish.
For a "NO FAIL" test to make sure the Turducken is cooked, please a Meat Thermometer through the top of the bird into the very centre of the meat. You are looking for an internal temperature of 74OC when roasting poultry.
Have a wonderful Christmas!
Make sure your Turducken is freshly prepared by your MWM skilled Butcher
Turducken Ready to Roast
Internal View of Turducken
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Each year I try a new way of preparing Turkey. I enjoy tackling different cooking methods as well as making my Christmas cooking more efficient. Some years when the whole extended families at the farm, it is far more efficient to light the webber and take the strain of my country kitchen.
I love the smokey taste of slow cooking my whole Turkey in the webber BBQ over coals. This is the way my mother always prepared the bird and is a great option when feeding lots of people. The webber will fit a huge Turkey size that most conventional ovens will struggle with.
When I have less to feed on Christmas day, a particular family favourite is a deboned and rolled Turkey. I simply bone out my Turkey, stuff it with something exotic and roast it in a conventional oven. By deboning I save hours of cooking time. My favourite stuffing is Cranberry and Chestnut and then I simply baste the outside with pan juices and my Turkey Basting Marinade.
You may wish to use a Turkey Buffe to save on cooking time. A Turkey Buffe is a great option if you are not a fan of brown Turkey Meat. It is basically Turkey Breast on the crown, with all the legs and wings removed. To cook a Turkey Buffe follow the directions below, just lower the cooking time according to weight.
A Turkey is a large investment so it is worthwhile checking out my tips and tricks to perfectly roasting your bird. There is nothing worse than sitting down to an overcooked dry bird Christmas Day. As with any cooking instructions please use my instructions as a tried and tested guide. Ovens vary in heat distribution and temperature control.
Instructions on How To Roast Your Turkey Or Turkey Buffe:
- Pre-heat oven to 170°C
- Rinse and wipe your fresh Turkey dry with kitchen paper.
- Add stuffing to the turkey cavity and pack it loosely not compressed.
- Transfer your turkey to a deep baking tray and massage your whole turkey with a simple Turkey Basting Marinade of 4 tbs olive oil, 60g melted butter, 2 cloves of fresh garlic roughly chopped, 6 sprigs of thyme, sea salt and pepper.
- Add a cup of vegetable stock to the bottom of the baking tray. (This will keep your turkey moist and succulent as well as assist with basting juices and extending the gravy)
- Place your turkey in the oven covered loosely with foil to stop the skin from burning and drying out.
- You need to bake your whole turkey or buffe for approximately 40min per kilo. For example a 4kg turkey will take approximately 2 hours & 40 mins to cook.
- Remove your turkey every 20 – 40mins and baste it with the cooking juices that are in the bottom of the baking tray.
- Remove the foil completely from your turkey for the final 40 mins to brown the breast.
- If unsure, your turkey is cooked when juices run clear after being pierced in the breast with a skewer. I prefer to use a Meat Thermometer which is guarantees a perfect result.
- Allow your turkey to rest in a warm place for approximately 20 minutes before carving. This will ensure that the juices have settled and will make the meat very succulent.
- While your turkey is resting, strain the juices from the baking tray to make a rich accompanying gravy. Serve it along with my simple Christmas Pear & Cranberry Relish.
Enjoy your festive cooking! It's all about family and friends...
I would love to see your turkey pics! Email them to us or post them on our Facebook page or tag us on Instagram @countryproducepantry
If you would like to purchase a Turkey please go to the MWM Online Christmas Hamper Selection. We have a large range of Frozen and Free Range Turkeys, Geese and Ducks Instore & online.
Our Christmas Hamper Butcher Box gives you the option to grab a Turkey at a special discounted price.
If you would like to purchase a Whole Turkey and have it deboned, please let us know in the "Additional Information" box at the checkout.
Deboned Turkeys will loose approximately 20% of whole weight. Please check out my pictures below as there are two options for deboned Turkeys ~ Boneless & Rolled or Semi Boneless (wings & legs left on).
For Online customers we will provide you with either string or netting so you can tie your bird up after stuffing in your fresh home delivered produce box, for store customers simply bring your stuffing in a few days prior to collection of you Turkey.
Merry Christmas from the Team at MWM
Boneless Stuffed Whole Turkey Netted
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Days are getting longer and more glorious as our Spring season hurtles towards Summer.
Whilst writing this article I can rejoice in the first serious rain in eight weeks. Lack of rain results in lack of grass, which also results in a detrimental decrease in feed for our livestock. I am happy to say the rain received over the weekend will result in many farmers being able to "finish" livestock instead of being forced to sell prematurely it at the local livestock market.
My family is enjoying getting outside around our picnic table, with a chilled refreshment, and the BBQ sizzling with our evening meals. Spring evenings have been magnificent, more like Summer.
There is nothing more nutritious and healthy as an evening BBQ meal. A fresh salad and a lean pice of premium steak, is a meal fit for a king.
Many cuts of meat work splendidly on the BBQ, but none better than our seriously sensational locally farmed "paddock to plate" steaks.
To make the most of the warm evenings I also enjoy roasting whole cuts of beef on our hooded BBQ. This is a great way to roast, it minimises fat during the cooking process without compromising flavour.
There are slight differences between the different cuts of steak available. We as people are all unique and have different pallate preferences regarding our steak and how it is cooked.
My favourite steak is a T-Bone which comes as no surprise to my Instagram followers! My husband Justin's favourite steak is Scotch Fillet. Obviously, Justin has to compromise, which means every Monday is char grilled T-Bone Steak night weather permitting "Happy Wife = Happy Life"!
It's a fabulous idea to try different cuts of steak to see what suits your taste. Some steaks are more suitable for different budgets and occasions, for instance, you would be up for a small fortune if you wanted to serve T-Bones at a casual BBQ for many people. However, when its a family of four and you want a wonderful steak to showcase, T-Bone Steak is a great choice.
I believe Australia has the best beef in the world, especially in our parts with our lush green paddocks and dedicated farming community. This also means that our less expensive cuts of steak, although a little traditionally tougher, can be delicious with a little preparation.
Here are the most common steaks, listed in order of our best selling;
- RUMP STEAK ~ A great all-rounder which as a whole cut is also a great roast beef. Rump steak is great value, lean and full flavoured. A little more on the chew than some other cuts, but it makes up for that in flavour. I also like Rump Steak diced for full flavours casseroles as it needs less cooking time than other flavoured cuts.
- SCOTCH FILLET STEAK ~ One of our most popular steaks and even more popular sold in a whole piece for roasting on the BBQ. Juicy, tender and full of flavour. The fat seam running through the steak keeps it tender whilst cooking. Its a crowd pleaser.
- T-BONE STEAK ~ The quintessential Aussie Steak and my favourite. Both Eye Fillet and Porterhouse makes this cut tender, rich and flavoursome and perfect chargrilled. A larger cut, more suited to steak lovers.
- PORTERHOUSE STEAK or otherwise known as SIRLOIN ~ An all time favourite, especially in America where it is also referred to as NEW YORK STEAK. A fine, firm texture that is rich in flavour. This cut is also super lean, especially when chargrilled.
- EYE FILLET ~ The most under and lean of all steaks. Mild and subtle in flavour which allows this steak to also absorb cooking partners, such as butter and garlic better than most other cuts. This is a wonderful steak for chargrilling or pan frying.
- BBQ BEEF STEAK or otherwise known as OYSTER BLADE ~ Majority of this steak is sold marinaded in our Teriyaki flavour. We tenderise this steak so its perfect for young and old. Buy plain for a ripper steak sandwich. This steak is perfect on the BBQ chargrilled. A great value option to feed the masses, a favourite of sporting clubs for fundraisers.
What's with the price variations?
Why do steak prices vary so much between cuts? It simply comes down to availability and popularity or supply and demand.
The Eye Fillet for example makes up a smaller portion of the animal, so there’s less to go around, more demand and a higher cost. The Eye Fillet also weighs less than other cuts due to the low fat content, so even though it costs more per kilo, the final price is surprisingly affordable.
That doesn’t mean the cheaper cuts aren’t as good. Rump and oyster blade steaks for example, are plentiful, full-flavoured, lean and great value. An Aussie favourite is the humble Steak sandwich, and my favourite steak cut is our BBQ Steak. Our BBQ Streak is tenderised so it cooks evenly, its the perfect size between two fresh slices of bakers bread.
Check out the Managers Special Section of the store to see if your favourite steaks on special this week!
Sign up to our weekly E~Newsletter "The Bull Sheet" and receive my "NO FAIL" fact sheet on cooking steaks!
Swing by my article on cooking your meat to perfection "Meat Perfection: Tips & Tricks".
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Product featured in the Christmas Hamper Butcher Box
which includes your amazing artisan locally farmed Rolled Loin of Pork
Follow my simple HOW TO steps and you'll be a Pork Crackle Star!
My cooking method is also suitable for our wonderful Rack Of Pork!
Support local Aussie Pork farmers and your LOCAL Butcher when purchasing your Pork Roasts!
As you are using a Loin OR Rack of Pork prepared by our artisan Butchers, it is already prepared, rolled and scored and ready for you to roast.
Using a 2KG Boneless Loin Of Pork:
1 Preheat your oven to 220°,
2 Make sure pork rind is dry, then rub pork with a mix of oil, salt & plain flour,
3 Place pork on a rack in a large, well greased baking dish,
4 Cook for 30 minutes until a great level of crackle is achieved,
5 Reduce heat to 180° and cook pork for a further 45 minutes or (30 minutes Rack of Pork),
6 Stand for 10 minutes,
7 Remove string & carve!
We enjoy this cut of meat for any occasion, but it is especially fantastic for a Christmas Table. A 2kg Boneless Rolled Loin of pork will feed 6 people.
Roasting normally reduces end weight of the meat on average by about 20%. Always take this into consideration when buying meats for roasting. Alternatively, ask your friendly Butcher to calculate the weight and cooking time for your meat.
When resting your roast make sure you transfer to a warm plate!
Check out this product In Store, or in the Pork Section of our Butcher Shop “The Country Produce Pantry”!
To accompany your delicious roast pork, try my super quick and easy Christmas Pear and Cranberry Relish recipe. Obviously it can be Christmas every day in your kitchen, why not enjoy all year round.
Cook, Eat & Enjoy
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A little while back I shared with y'all a helpful article to aid keeping mince meat products fresh and wholesome.
If you missed it simply click on the link "Lets on MINCE Our Words ~ Keep It FRESH!"
Feel free to join in the discussion or any ask me questions in relation to any of my meaty articles. I love hearing from y'all.
To celebrate the humble mince meat that shines so brightly in most of our kitchens, I have been working on a family favourite Feature Recipe. This simple Beef Mince Curry packs plenty of flavour, is wholesome and heathy to boot!
Make mince meat a hero on your plate. Freshly minced lean beef is the perfect meat to create a delicious meal for the family when life gets hectic and your under the pump.
I love this recipe because a simple curry that normally requires plenty of time for flavours to develop, is ready in under half an hour.
Its like "Magic" as in no time at all you have prepared and served an awesome dish. No one will believe the flavour you have deleveloped in this dish with so little cooking time.
Your still the master of the heat. Simply adjust spices and chilli to your taste preferences.
This recipe also freezes well and is great reheated for an delicious work lunch.
An awesome curry to take to a friends when invited to share a meal, there is no end to the versatility of this dish.
Stunning Beef Mince Curry
Serves 4 Prep. Time : 10 Minutes Cooking Time: 15 Minutes
- 1kg Beef Mince
- 1 tbsp sunflower oil
- 450g brushed sebago potato, peeled and 1.5cm diced
- 3 cloves garlic, crushed
- 7 cm fresh ginger, finely grated
- 1 bunch coriander, roots and stems finely chopped, sprigs picked
- 2 tbsp garam masala curry powder
- 1 brown onion, finely sliced
- 1 Cup/400g of diced tomatoes
- 150g peas
- 100g baby spinach
- 1 long green chilli, sliced (optional)
- 1 Lebanese cucumber, diced
- ½ cup Greek yoghurt
- To serve, steamed rice
- 2. Add garam masala and onion and cook, stirring often for 5 minutes until onion has softened. Add tomatoes and half a can of water and simmer for 5 minutes.
- 3. Add peas and cook for 2 minutes or until tender. Add spinach and fold through until just wilted. Add chilli, if using, or serve on the side.
- 4. Combine cucumber and yoghurt with a little salt and pepper.
- 5. Serve curry with rice, cucumber yoghurt and coriander sprigs.
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