TIPS & Advice, From Your Butcher

“I love my steak cooked medium-rare, Yet when I attempt to cook it, my rib-eye turns out grey, flabby and tough. What should I do?”

It sounds like you’re cooking it for too long and at too low a heat. Steak can vary in size so there are a few basic rules you need to follow to cook the perfect steak:

  • Allow your steak to come to room temperature for around 15 minutes.
  • Heat your pan, as hot as the sun.
  • The French don’t season their meat before cooking, but this is a personal preference. I do. Some say the salt and pepper burns. This may be the case but I like it! So, it's your choice.
  • Oil your steak, not the pan, because we don’t wish to burn any excess oil.
  • Place your steak in the pan. Do not move it around. Turn it after two minutes and do the same on the opposite side. With a 200–220g rib-eye steak, this should have it at rare or just above. Now baste it in butter (don’t allow the butter to burn) for a further minute and you should achieve the perfect medium-rare.
  • The cardinal rule is to allow your steak to rest for at least 5 minutes on a warm plate. This allows any of the red juices to flow away before you plate up. Resting is a rule for all meats: the larger the joint, the longer the rest.

Himalayan salt Aged Beef... Magnificent beef from Northern Ireland matured to perfection
— Charles Campion

How do I cook the perfect sausage?

It’s not simply a case of heating a pan and fry it off. Of course, you can cook it quickly but to cook the best Moyallon sausage we advise 'low and slow'.

Sausage meat is a form of mince and holds a higher fat content than other meat. By cooking on a low heat, either under a grill or in a pan, you render off excess fat, leaving the meaty sausage to take centre stage.

How do I cook a collar bacon joint? 

This depends on size. You can bake, boil or roast a collar bacon joint. A good rule of thumb is 20 minutes per 450g/1lb. A steady simmer if boiling or 180°c to bake. Roasting is at 200°C, which reduces the time by 5 minutes per 450g/1lb. As always, allow to rest when removed from the oven or pot. 

This is a great cut of meat, cheap as chips and easy peasy to cook. Try one as a midweek meal, with plenty of fluffy mash and lashings of parsley sauce.

How do I cook a bacon chop?

For any pork or bacon chop, the meat can dry up very fast if you introduce too much heat and cook it too fast.

We advise that you seal it for about a minute each side, transfer it to the oven for around 10 minutes. And don’t forget to rest the meat once it's done.

Why Moyallon Dry Cure Bacon?

Most commercial bacon is made by injecting (or tumbling) a saltwater solution into pork loins (usually imported), which both speeds up the cure and adds weight.

In effect, you’re paying for water and your bacon will steam instead of crisping up like a proper, well–behaved bacon.

The bacon may or may not contain phosphates in order to hold the water in and, if less than 10% water is added, the manufacturer doesn’t have to declare it.

So, why is yours different?

Made only from locally produced pork loins, our dry–cured bacon is hand–made the traditional way, by rubbing a mixture of salt and saltpetre (nitrite which occurs naturally in nature) into the loins, which extracts moisture from the fresh pork.

It is not salty and has low nitrate levels. We believe in letting nature and time develop the flavour.

Our back bacon slices start off much smaller in size than most commercial bacon (because they are not swollen with water) and lose very little during cooking, only the natural shrinkage which would occur during cooking of fresh meat.

And if it’s smoked?

Again, we do this the natural way: our cured loins, chops and joints are cold smoked over a mixture of oak and cherry wood, resulting in a lovely, but not too powerful, smoky flavour.

The big boys will sometimes spray the bacon with liquid smoke, which might be easier, but is not the same thing at all.

Dry–cured loin of bacon gave me pause for thought. Why can’t all Irish bacon be this good, firm yet succulent?
— Tom Doorley, Irish Times

Beef Cuts


Lamb Cuts

Got a question of your own?
Ask in the shop or through our contact form.