Ultimate Companion to Meat

'The Ultimate Companion to Meat: On the Farm, At the Butcher, In the Kitchen' by Anthony Puharich and Libby Travers

“The Ultimate Companion to Meat: On the Farm, At the Butcher, In the Kitchen” by Anthony Puharich and Libby Travers, The Countryman Press, 512 pages, hardcover, $45

Carnivores will love reading the beautiful cookbook “The Ultimate Companion to Meat: On the Farm, At the Butcher, In the Kitchen” by Anthony Puharich and Libby Travers.

As a fifth-generation butcher and owner of Victor Churchill, the oldest continuously operating butcher shop in Australia, Puharich knows his way around meat and what to do with it.

The late Anthony Bourdain called Victor Churchill’s “the single most beautiful butcher shop I’ve ever seen.”

In the book, Puharich and food writer Travers offer readers everything they’ll want to know about aging, handling, cutting and cooking meat, whether it's chicken, duck, turkey, goose, squab, quail, game birds, lamb, mutton, goat, pork, charcuterie, beef, veal, rabbit, venison and wild game like venison and even kangaroo.

Side Dish: Recipe for Chicken Schnitzel Sandwiches

There’s also plenty of detailed information on the various cuts of meat and techniques from cooking and butchery, storage and hygiene.

Meat charts show American, British and French cuts of meat, and detailed photographs of certain butchery show, among other things, how to joint a chicken or duck, how to bone a leg quarter, prepare a Christmas ham, butterfly a lamb leg, and what to look for in steak finish from rare to well done.

Side Dish: Kids 'have the power to make magic' by baking, says cookbook author

Beautiful photographs illustrate the book’s recipes, which include some for using the whole animal, such as offal meat and pork skin.

Among the recipes are Chicken Schnitzel Sandwiches, Split Pea and Ham Soup, Meatballs, Turkey Mole, Roast Lamb Rack with Spring Greens and Tarragon Sauce, and Pan-Fried Pork Chops with Apple and Crushed Potato.

Side Dish: One can be the most delicious number

“The Ultimate Companion to Meat” is a good choice for anyone who wants to learn more about how meat is raised, butchered, sold and properly cooked.


Cheramie Sonnier is a food writer and columnist. Email her at sonnierfood@gmail.com, and follow her on Twitter, @CheramieSonnier.