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26
Nov

Cabassi & Co, Artisan Butchers

I’m always on the search for a great gourmet meat pie and sausage roll. Today I had to go get new glasses at Indooroopilly shopping centre. While I was there I walked down to Cabassi & Co, Artisan Butchers opposite Woolworths to see what meatporn was in the butcher window. Their adjacent Butcher’s Kitchen had a heap of pies and some enormous things that looked like meatloaf encased in flaky pastry. I assumed the giant meat cylinders were their version of sausage rolls.

I got chatting with the guy behind the counter and he informed me he made the pies ($7) and that they were all curry pies and that the large meat cylinders were beef and haloumi sausage rolls ($4.50). I mentioned my quest for the ultimate meat pie but I wasn’t going to have a curry pie due to them always being a disappointment. I ordered the sausage roll and while we were chatting he said he’d give me a taste of half of a pie as he had heaps left and they certainly weren’t going to be reheated and sold the next day.

Unfortunately I forgot to take a picture of the half pie. From a curry perspective, yes I wasn’t overly excited about the flavour. The pie however was one of the best constructed pies I’ve had in a long time. The large chunks of quality meat were cooked to a beautiful consistency. Some of it was stringing apart and the filling was predominantly meat with just enough gravy. The pastry was flaky and the half pie he handed to me retained it’s structural integrity through to the last bite without resorting to a dense pastry shell to do so.

I mentioned to him that just as I thought, the curry didn’t impress me (It wasn’t bad by any means in fact as spiced meat goes it was quite tasty but just a tad on the bland side for my liking), however if his other pies were made in the same manner as this was then I was definitely coming back! He thanked me for the feedback and I headed home with the sausage roll.

I did note that while I was chatting with him the burgers being made for some other customers looked absolutely fantastic. Quality ingredients, nice portions and freshly made, but it’s all about the taste so that’s for another day.

The picture doesn’t do it’s size justice. It’s about 6cm round by 8cm deep (2″ x 3″). This thing was so massive that I held off eating it till I got home and could weigh it. It came in at an impressive 350g (12oz)! At $4.50 it was also very well priced. Despite being an end of day product the centre was still extremely moist and the pastry was still quite flaky. The filling was tasty but with no particular spice or herb standing out, I think having a flavour leader could give it that something extra. The cheese had melted throughout and could still be tasted in some bites. Overall it would easily be in the top three store bought sausage rolls I’ve eaten.

I’m going to have to go back tomorrow because between the pretty girl waiting for her burger who kept smiling at me (most likely laughing at my overly enthusiastic conversation about pies with the guy behind the counter) and the large wall of aging meat hanging in the butcher window, I got extremely distracted and left the envelope containing my eyeglass prescription, receipt and appointment details sitting on the table. I rang when I got home and it’s being kept behind the counter for me to pick up which means while I’m retrieving it I’ll have to partake in more meat-pastry goodness!

I highly recommend you get there and grab a pie and/or sausage roll. They make a set amount and once sold out that’s it. The other items looked top quality and you can even treat yourself to some high grade meat from the butcher, pivot and walk over to the kitchen for it to be cooked for you!
The only downside is that it’s at Indooroopilly Shopping Centre which is chaos and mayhem for parking.

Cabassi & Co, Artisan Butchers
Shop 1065, Indooroopilly Shopping Centre, 322 Moggill Rd
Indooroopilly, Queensland, Australia

Mon 9:00 am – 5:30 pm
Tue 9:00 am – 5:30 pm
Wed 9:00 am – 5:30 pm
Thu 9:00 am – 9:00 pm
Fri 9:00 am – 5:30 pm
Sat 9:00 am – 5:00 pm
Sun 10:00 am – 4:00 pm
https://www.facebook.com/Cabassi.Co

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10
Nov

Albondigas : Spanish Meatballs with Chickpeas In Tomato Sauce

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1kg Ground Pork Mince (or 50/50 pork/beef)
  • 2 Large onions diced
  • 3 Chorizo’s (Peel one and slice the other two)
  • 2 rashers fatty bacon
  • 300g Chickpeas soaked in water overnight (Or sub 1 can of chickpeas drained)
  • 3 cups of diced tomatoes (or 2 cans)
  • 1Tb Garlic Paste
  • 6 cloves garlic thinly sliced
  • 2 Tb White Wine Vinegar
  • 1 Tb Smoked Paprika
  • 1 whole dried chilli (optional)
  • Salt (~1Ts total)
  • 1-2 Anchovies  mashed to paste.
  • 1 Egg beaten
  • 1 large handful of fresh flatleaf parsley
  • Olive Oil (Spanish if available)
  • Salt and Cracked pepper to taste

METHOD:

  • Drain the soaking chickpeas then add to a pot of hot water and bring to boil. Turn down heat and simmer for 30 minutes then drain and keep aside. (You can skip this if you are using canned chickpeas.
  • While the chickpeas are cooking, blend together 1 chorizo (skin removed), 1 diced onion, 1 Tb garlic paste and the rashers of bacon along with a couple of twists of black pepper.(If you don’t have a blender/stick mixer, just chop it all up as finely as you can with a knife.)
  • Heat frypan and cook this meat mixture, moving it around the pan to break up any lumps. Cook until all large pieces are broken up and the moisture from the onion has dissipated.
  • Remove from pan (no need to wash pan as you’ll be using it soon), allow mixture to cool slightly then add to raw ground pork mince along with the finely chopped parsley, anchovies and beaten egg.
  • Mix together with your fingers and form round meatballs slightly bigger than golf balls.
  • Fry meatballs on high heat turning every minute or so till outside is sealed. Try and keep the meatballs slightly undercooked.
  • Transfer each batch of cooked meatballs to a bowl (to catch the juices)
  • In a deep casserole dish /saucepan, fry the two sliced chorizos on med heat with a few tablespoons of olive oil until the fat and spices from the sausage start to colour the oil. Add the second diced onion and cook till onion becomes translucent. Add in the sliced garlic and fry for 2-3 minutes before adding cooked chickpeas and smoked paprika. Keep frying on med for further 3-5 min till all the flavours have fused.
  • Add in the three cups of diced tomatoes, 1Ts of salt and the white wine vinegar. You can also add the whole dried chilli if you choose.
  • Add in meatballs and their juices that have collected in the bowl, then top up the pot with the chicken stock /water till meatballs are covered. Add in 6 Tb of olive oil (Optional, but it brings out a serious amount of flavour to the dish). Simmer for 20-30 mins stirring occasionally until the liquid has cooked down to a thick tomato sauce.
  • Serve with a large crusty loaf of bread to mop up the sauce.

 

Drain the soaking chickpeas then add to a pot of hot water and bring to boil. Turn down heat and simmer for 30 minutes then drain and keep aside. (You can skip this if you are using canned chickpeas.

While the chickpeas are cooking, blend together 1 chorizo (skin removed), 1 diced onion, 1 Tb garlic paste and the rashers of bacon  along with a couple of twists of black pepper. (If you don’t have a blender/stick mixer, just chop it all up as finely as you can with a knife.)

 

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23
Aug

Makin’ Bacon (Home Made Smoked Bacon In A Weber Kettle)

We all know bacon is awesome. I’ve always wanted to cure my own bacon and came across some organic pork belly on special and thought it an opportune time to make my own from scratch. Well almost, as raising pigs in the city isn’t going to happen in a hurry!
 
** I chose not to use sodium nitrite. Seriously, humans have been curing meats without it for centuries. Sure botulism can occur but that’s more from poor food handling and I’m extremely confident with natural food preservation methods and common sense. If they can make cured smallgoods without refrigeration in bygone eras we should be able to do it nowadays with no issues. So…. Make your cure and have it ready. Pull pork out of fridge. Rub it thoroughly.  Put it straight back in fridge. Do not let it sit uncured on the bench for extended periods of time. (You can do that after it’s cured!)
 
I recommend Googling a few recipes for cures. There’s thousands of variations and after all that I ended up making my own recipe. Make more cure as you want to pack it on and the ingredients are cheap. Or simply make a bit more as you need it over the week of curing.
 
INGREDIENTS:
1 Large Pork Belly
 
Cure:
2:1 by weight salt to sugar.
So 200g sea salt to 100g brown sugar.
NOTE: Weight is the key word here. Not volume. As grain size can differ greatly.
 
Optional: (These are not necessary to cure bacon but you can add them for a hint of flavour.)
Black Peppercorns crushed
Coriander Seeds crushed
Red Chilli flakes
Bay leaf powder
Dried Oregano
Dried Fennel Seeds
 
 
PIG NIPPLES !
As some of you may know most of the pork sold to you comes from sows. Apparently the meat is just more delicious from the female pig.
 
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