Arbroath butchers ‘bring home the bacon’

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The local butcher received awards for their beefburgers and new speciality savoury creations, products that were judged at the City of Glasgow College last month.

Their success came with gold awards for their beef burger and cajun salsa chicken mini buffet pie, the brainchild of apprentice Sean Melville. This was followed up by silver awards for Mexican madness chicken and pepper bake and mince and onion bridie.

“We have ideas from everyone in the shop so it is a collaboration from everyone,” said Pamela Bennett.

“We try different things and they’re not all successes but every product we entered this year won an award! It was really, really good.”

The Mexican Madness chicken and pepper bake is filled with shredded chicken giving it full flavour and being a delight to eat.

Pamela explained: “From a customer point of view it is far easier to re-heat a pastry when there are no chunks, it also stops the pastry bursting.”

Their mince and onion bridie, which has won awards in previous competitions, was a mainstay in the silver category.

Fleming Butchers, Arbroath, also received mention - scoring three silver awards for their steak and gravy pie, cheese and macaroni pie and beef burger.

The butcher taken over by the Batchelor family only five months ago, scooped an impressive array of accolades despite their relatively short tenure.

Guthrie Batchelor said: “We are very happy with the results, particularly after only taking over five months ago.”

Flemings continue to evolve, creating new and improved recipes in-house but also includes customers in their decision making process.

“We run competitions to try and engage the customer and get new ideas such as a recent one for new flavours of sausage,” Guthrie explained.

Perth butcher Beaton Lindsay, president of the Scottish Craft Butchers, said: “We run these evaluations to recognise the innovation and expertise that goes into the quality products that craft butchers make.

“Customers are becoming increasingly interested in sourcing the very best meat products available and our evaluation aids the customer finding all the good products out there at our specialist butchers.”

Almost 300 products from all across Scotland were delivered to the City of Glasgow College where they were judged by a team of experts under the supervision of Craft Butchers Chief Executive Douglas Scott.

The best savoury pastry products were established on the day.

However, the two best beefburgers from each of five regions of Scotland were subsequently mystery shopped and then judged by the chef and staff at Carfraemill Hotel in the Scottish Borders.

Results were announced at the Scottish Meat Trade Fair in Perth on Sunday, May 10.