Once upon a time, I accidentally bought a house neighbouring a dumpster.
More accurately, a house directly next to a set of shops, with the bins and truck access being over our side fence. While the 5am roller door catapulting open every morning and the forklift-skip-emptying were aggravating, the proximity to a truly great set of shops couldn’t be beat.
It’s two years since we moved thirty minutes south, and Carina North Quality Meats is one of the shops we miss the most. We have countless memories of ‘ducking next door’ to pick up some sumptuous snags for the barbecue, or a beautiful piece of steak. While we have a good local butcher in Shailer Park, I do miss the leaner, grass-fed beef from Carina.
There are three key attributes I love about this butcher:
1. Grass fed beef, lamb. Free-range chicken, turkey and pork. When you buy meat from Carina North, you just know it’s going to be good. Truly reliable quality and friendly staff as a bonus.
2. Delicious ready-to-cook dinners. Beef wellingtons, stir fry mixes, marinated butterflied chicken; this butcher has plenty of options for when you’re chasing novelty and convenience.
3. Shop online! Carina North Quality Meats offers free delivery to Brisbane suburbs when you spend over $100. I only just found this out recently when the team contacted me to see if I’d like to try out the delivery service.
I jumped at the opportunity and toddled on over to www.carinanorthqualitymeats.com.au to check out what was on offer. I was pleased to find a user-friendly online shop and I quickly piled up a selection of goodies. With school holidays on the horizon, I opted for a four kilo mixed sausage value pack, as well as some decadent beef wellingtons, lean eye fillets and ribeye on the bone.
The order arrived on Tuesday and I’ll admit Dylan was more excited than he usually is when my online shopping turns up!
We pan-fried some delicious pork sausages on day one and served them simply with steamed vegetables. When I need a ‘no-complaints’ dinner for the kids, I know sausages will do the trick and these were particularly delicious. So far, we’ve had the pork and the beef (my favourite), with some lamb and chicken sausages on the agenda for the coming week.
The following three nights saw a beef frenzy and I have zero regrets! We enjoyed a lazy dinner of beef wellingtons and 70’s style zucchini bake on Wednesday night alongside some spectacular Tscharke red from the Barossa. These pastry parcels enclose a seared piece of eye fillet rolled in sautéed mushrooms. For about $8-$9 per piece, I think it’s a fantastic treat for those nights when you’re after something comforting and easy for a Winter’s night. There were unfortunately no cooking instructions on the pack, so I used The Power of the Internet and followed some instructions I found on a Beef Wellington recipe. Simply heat the oven to 180 degrees and bake for twenty minutes until puffed and golden. A few more minutes if you like your steak closer to well-done. A fancy steak dinner in twenty minutes and you don’t have to get out of your pajamas. This is living!
On Thursday Dylan and I enjoyed the mouth-watering rib-eyes: Dylan’s favourite cut. We have been buying them from our local butcher where they supply grain-finished beef. The difference with the Carina steaks were that clearly leaner for being grass-fed, while still having a delicious flavour. While a beautifully marbled ribeye is fabulous treat, it’s good to know that you can get your favourite cuts a lot leaner without the loss of too much flavour. We’ll certainly be getting these again. We enjoyed them barbecued until medium-rare, served alongside a roasted vegetable salad.
We couldn’t bring ourselves to freeze the eye fillets so backed up for yet another steak night on Friday. These 250g eye fillets were lean and tender. Dylan barbecued them while I boiled (too many) new potatoes, and served them with a teaspoon of butter and fresh chives. Caramelised onions and leftover zucchini bake accompanied, along with yet more red wine! Big week!
We are in Yeppoon with the kids and for school holidays and brought up the last two kilos of frozen sausages. We are looking forward to barbecuing those bad boys for an easy and delicious supper in the next few days. I foresee mashed potato, steamed carrots and broccoli and an indulgent onion gravy. God, I love Winter!
I am so pleased to know that I can get my Carina meat fix without having to drive half an hour from my house. I’d certainly re-order everything we bought in our first haul and look forward to ordering some roasts and lean mince next time, too. It’s great to support a local business and feel confident that you’re getting great quality produce. If you’re a Brisbane-based carnivore, why not give them a try?
Brisbane Foodie was supplied with a voucher for the online shop. Thanks to Carina North Quality Meats for sponsoring the most delicious week of home-cooked meals we’ve had in recent memory!