I love shopping at Meijer’s. None of the three stores in our area is very close, maybe 5 miles or so, but the trip down Platt passes by Bombay Grocers (source of peeled garlic for paste), the dump, and the cheapest gas station in town. Added on todays trip was Gordon Food Services, right across from Meijer’s, for those 5 gallon jugs of red wine vinegar and soy sauce. Feeding our ‘shrooms habit https://wordpress.com/post/theviewfromharbal.com/1238
But Meijer’s always abounds with bargains, and today they were in the meat department. Now I have a freezer stuffed with meat all catalogued in my 3 ring binders, each species in its own special bag in the freezer. Unless our electric goes out and all melts, we can eat (well) for years. But boy, look at that pack of ham hocks! Not even on sale, but you can always use a ham hock, and here were 4 of ‘em in a pack! Then, wow, lookit the size of that pork butt shoulder! Beats some of the customers. And the designation makes me worry about the effects of industrial agriculture (how did butt and shoulder get so close?). But it’s more than 50% off, so 7 ½ pounds of it goes into my basket. Not to be outdone is the ham display with slabs of no unquestionable origin close to 10 pounds beckon. They’re already cooked you see, so easy to manipulate once home. I learned at Easter this year, thawing out a ham from ’99, you could do things with these huge chunks of meat besides thaw ‘em and then serve them with pineapple. So at these prices, I had to have one. Your receipt at Meijer’s includes a tally of your savings, and mine were enormous, plus I got a $3 off coupon for hair products.
Home, I was exhausted after this Herculean effort at food gathering. Meat wasn’t all I got. So several hours passed before I started organizing things. I also had a 4 ½ pound pack of boneless thighs from Busch’s the day before to deal with. See here my gleaming instruments of destruction.
The vacu-sealer is key to the whole process, generating shrink sealed packages of labeled wonderfulness. The scale, which I was weighed on as an infant, assures precision. And you wouldn’t want to argue with that knife.
The thighs were easy, two per pack. Ham hocks went one per pack.. Neither Kathy nor I could see us consuming 7 ½ pounds of pork shoulder butt, so cloven in twain it was. Our first butt to hang in the smoker will be a mere 4 pound number. The hard part of dividing the ham was getting the bone out. I have a “boning knife’ but its slender blade is effete against this task, which requires brute manual force. The meaty femur will make a wonderful addition to some Dutch split pea soup recipe. The rest is all sandwiches and chunks. Sure good eatin’. Thank you, Fred Meijer
A man should know his meat. While I’ve yet to stand witness in the slaughter house, at least I have the satisfaction of taking the output to comestable portions, as the vacu-sealer hums its song of approval.