Fresh from success with his pig cookbook Hog, Richard Turner returns but with this time a focus on beef.
And of course, many people have a moral objection.
But try telling that to the millennials who consume burgers in vast quantities and you’ll get short shrift. And I suspect Richard Young will not be receptive either.
He is no meat monster though. While he of course champions meat eating, he also is keen to promote high standards of animal welfare, to farm meat well and honourably. Beef can be cheap and the cows can have terrible lives, or beef can be a higher price, from contented cows and most importantly taste a great deal better. Guess which he prefers?
From the cover, textured like a coir carpet, to the design, typography and photography, this is a fine animal of a book. Open it any page and you’ll find plenty to drool over; from the sort of thing that pops up at pop ups – Fried Beef Nuggets with Kimchi Ketchup – to more esoteric dishes such as Braised Ox Tongue Salad and Charcoal Grilled Calf’s Heart – a dish almost custom designed to send a vegetarian crazy.
The exotic includes African food, which to be honest has never really set the dining world alight. Here is West African suya, a kind of kebab introduced to the Cameroon by Arabic traders. Richard says to use Maldon sea salt flakes, as presumably do the Hausa people. When they can’t get Himalayan pink salt at their local Waitrose, that is.
There’s a recipe for corned beef. When you’ve eaten the real thing, perhaps in a New York deli, you can’t ever go back to the tinned stuff. It’s just so delicious. Pickled tripe is perhaps not for everyone but Sichuan beef definitely is.
The recipe for British Army beef curry will alarm many people but some of us will find the flavour Proustian, especially with those lovely sultanas. Open lasagne? Yes please. Oh and on that note, the recipe for bolognese sauce is classic but effective.
And yes there’s a burger to keep the tasteless happy, but at least he doesn’t chuck everything but the kitchen sink in, as so many do. Onions, mustard, lettuce and gherkin are all good meat needs not layers upon layers of everything in the fridge.
Favourite recipe? Has to be the ravioli, filled with meat from braised short ribs? Oh yes, definitely.
Prime is another great book from Richard Turner; give it prime space in your kitchen.