One of the most frequent requests from customers using our newly opened shop in Butchers Row, Barnstaple, is for us to stock mutton. We listen to your views. That is why from this weekend onwards, we shall be offering this delicious meat to our customers.
Mutton is best slow-cooked to make it tender and bring out the flavour. It is a stronger meat than lamb, is often fattier and darker in colour and has a distinctive, almost gamey taste.
In earlier centuries mutton was viewed as a delicacy and appeared on the top menus. However, during the twentieth century, it went completely out of favour. Now it is very popular again, both with lovers of Middle Eastern, South Asian and AfroCaribbean food, as well as those wanting to try a new taste or to recreate Great British food.
The Greeks are one of the biggest consumers of mutton. If you have ever tasted one of their slow-cooked oven roasts of mutton with plenty of garlic and mountain herbs, and the potatoes added to the dish for the last hour or so to cook in the juices and fat of the meat, you will know why. Quite delicious… with a Greek Salad and a bottle of heavy Greek red wine!
Similarly slow-cooked mutton makes excellent curries. A mutton biryani or roghan ghosht, a Kerala, Goan or Punjabi mutton curry are all delicious as is the famous Railway Mutton Curry cooked for first class passengers on the trains in the days of the Raj.
Or you might want to try out a proper Lancashire Hotpot or even Mrs. Beeton’s recipe in her “Book of Household Management” for boiled mutton with caper sauce. She asserts that this is an economical meal with mutton costing just sixpence a pound!
We shall need to charge a little more than that for our prime organic mutton, but you can then enjoy a quite delicious meat!