Wednesday 08 May 2019 09:38:36 AM

Downpatrick Master Butcher Does Demo For SERC Students
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Downpatrick Butcher  Shares Skills with SERC Students

Hospitality and Catering students at South Eastern Regional College (SERC) recently enjoyed a visit from Downpatrick master butcher  Richard McGreevy of McGreevy’s Butchers located at the Ballymote Centre.

The students culinary knowledge received a boost  as Richard cut into a side of beef and a whole lamb in his unique masterclass demonstration to the students.

Richard showed the intrigued students classical cuts of lamb and beef using the correct terms and explained important issues to do with health and safety. The students were impressed with the demonstration and had plenty of questions for Richard such as why there is a difference in price depending on the cut and the reasons why they use different cuts for different dishes.

Master Butcher Richard McGreevy leads a butchery workshop with Professional Cookery students at South Eastern Regional College’s Downpatrick Campus. Richard is pictured with SERC Professional Cookery tutor Michelle McCarthy and students Brian McArdel and Caitriona Brannagan.

Richard also demonstrated boning out, cutting chops and steaks and offered a range of advice from choosing the most suitable cuts for cooking and carving.

SERC’s Professional Cookery tutor Michelle McCarthy added:  “The demonstration was a great success as some students didn’t realise how many different products came from an animal and that sometimes the cheaper cuts make for tastier meals. The demonstration was a unique ‘hands on’ opportunity for the students to watch how to prepare and use local produce as well as learn about different cuts of meat. It was also a fantastic practical experience to supplement their studies.

“These visits are invaluable to the students as they illustrate where the individual cuts of beef and lamb are taken from and show the different methods of boning and cutting. Watching the butcher using techniques such as French trimming and tying was a great chance for the students to see the skills and long-established techniques used in butchery.”

Richard started his demonstration with the lamb by taking out the shoulders and boning them and showed students the best way to avoid leaving any waste. After he’d prepared the beef, Richard explained the profits that can be made from butchering down and boning meat.

Richard demonstrated how to prepare specific cuts and joints, and the importance of selecting the right joint for the right cooking process. He also shared with the students’ hints and tips for seasoning meat and demonstrated how to use knives safely.

Catering tutor Michelle McCarthy explained the importance of working with local suppliers. She said: “By working with local businesses and suppliers, students get a better understanding of where the food produce comes from, how it has been reared and which farms it has come from.”

Richard was impressed by the students. He said: “The demonstration was a great success and the students asked some excellent questions. I think it’s excellent that the College works with local businesses like us.”

SERC continually strives to work with local employers and businesses to develop courses, placements and enrich student learning and has worked with McGreevys Butchers for many years. Michelle said, I would like to take this opportunity to thank Richard for taking the time to provide this unique masterclass to help enrich the students learning.

The apprentices spend one day a week in college completing their qualifications.

Brian McArdle, a SERC Professional Cookery student from Newcastle, said: “I really enjoyed the demo and found it very informative. I think we all agreed we had learnt a lot!”