Sunday, February 13, 2011

boy food


Was talking to Pete about his boy who is doing Farming Internship. Up at 4.30 am, solid day of hard physical stuff, sports all evening, and fed large mountains of good plain food throughout day. Boy, not surprisingly, completely knackered but also content.

Is strong similarity between farming college and military training. Strategy appears simple - keep em busy and exhausted, so no energy for fighting, shagging or arguing. Is excellent plan to my mind, as by some miraculous feat, boys also suddenly able to make own beds and fold clothes instead of sleeping in squalor and dumping on "floordrobe".

Strategy succeeds or fails on food. Hungry tired boys are dangerous species, capable of great evil. So food is stuff my mum refered to as "Boy Food", meat and spuds, meat and pastry, meat and gravy...As was only my sister and myself , boy food was reserved for boyfriends, builders and brothers in law. But we also loved simple filling Old School type meals.
Meat and eggs are great muscle building protien, with high satiety factor - protein makes us feel full. Starchy carbs are all about energy, also comforting and cheap!Unless you are v. active boy, keep serving to size of fist.

As we are not on farm and don't have military budget, but have high energy boys to feed, is necessary to choose carefully, or teenager taming comes at great financial cost. One of cheapest and leanest meat cuts is brisket or Corned Beef. Is great boy food, wonderful with mashed spuds. Also good in sandwiches with relish or chutney it is underrated "old school" food, easy inexpensive and simple.

Slow cooker corned beef

The slow cooker is invaluable when you are out all day, corned beef is tasty however you cook it so is less likely to be bland than many other slow cooked meat meals.

1 piece of corned silverside- whatever size best suits your household, adjust cooking time according to the weight
1 onion, sliced
2 carrots, sliced lengthways- can include other veg if you wish but may get a bit soft
1 bay leaf
1 cup ginger ale
zest and juice of an orange
6 whole cloves
1 teaspoon black peppercorns

Place the meat into the crock pot, add the spices and vegetables, juice and ginger ale. Cover and cook on low 7-9 hours or according to the manufacturer’s recommendations for meat by weight.
Remove the meat from the liquid and allow to rest for 10 minutes before slicing.
Serve with mashed spuds, green veg and a good chutney or relish.

Classic Corned beef

Corned beef, silverside or corned brisket – whatever you call it this is a lean cut of meat with a salty flavour. Serve hot with veg or cold in slices. Make sure you allow plenty of time as it needs to simmer for an hour or more.
I piece of corned beef – whatever size best suits your household, adjust cooking time according to the weight
1 onion peeled but left whole
a few 3-4 whole cloves
6 peppercorns
1 tbsp brown sugar or golden syrup
1 tbsp malt vinegar
Cold water to cover
Place the meat into a large saucepan, add the spices and cover with water. Stir in the sugar or syrup and the vinegar and bring to the boil. Simmer the meat allowing 25 minutes per 500g.
Remove the meat from the water and allow to rest for 10 minutes before slicing.
Serve with mashed spuds, green veg and a good chutney or relish.

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