You are currently browsing the category archive for the ‘Butcher’ category.

After last week’s post on Bavette Meat & Provisions, it seems I’m on a butcher post spree 🙂 When I want to just pick something up to cook immediately or have someone cook for me, I go to Belcampo. I live closer to their Santa Monica location now, but it’s also easy to get to their Grand Central market location in DTLA is you ride the Metro. I carry my own cooler bag with ice packs (thank-you @jean_de_paradis) whenever I shop for provisions that are temperature sensitive like meat, poultry, and seafood, but if you live close enough to any of their locations to walk home, their grocery bags advertise all the attributes of their products.

Their ground beef was on sale, so I made two half pound patties of their marvelous grind.

 Of course, I topped it off with some bacon 🙂

 I used the spicy Italian Sausage in some pasta.

The Porterhouse pork chop was a hearty meal and well worth the $20 price tag.

If you don’t want to cook, they will do it for you; I highly recommend their lamb burger with sweet potato fries!

I met Melissa years ago when she was the manager at Lindy & Grundy. I will never forget her running out to the parking garage to catch me before I drove off because we got so wrapped up talking about recipes that I left my entire purchase on the counter 🙂 I think that was the start of our friendship, finding a mutual love of cooking and food that surpassed any business transaction. When I moved to France, I knew I would find great butchers, but none of them became friends like the ones I had in the USA.

Melissa’s Bavette Meat & Provisions has an online store (she delivers once a week), and she sells at the Altadena and Hollywood Farmer’s Markets, so bring your cooler and ice packs if you want to pick something up.

I picked up two chickens to roast, knowing that they were truly pasture raised and humanely reared, because Melissa verifies her sources; she does not merely believe the advertising. I stuffed them with herbs and lemon and they came out beautifully.

I realized that roasting whole chickens means lots of leftovers if you are not having people over for a meal, so I also bought some chicken legs, for times when I am eating alone. They come two to an order, so the perfect size portion for a hearty eater, or in my case one to eat now, one to eat later 🙂

I roasted one set with herbs de Provence, garlic, salt, pepper, and lemon (left) and I marinated the other set (right) in black vinegar, soy sauce, ginger, garlic, sambal, oyster sauce, and shallots overnight, before roasting.

Choose whatever recipe you wish for yours:)

When Melissa told me she was getting a lamb, I immediately asked if I could get a neck, and she RESERVED IT FOR ME on her website! One of the perks of being friends with your butcher!

I seared then slowly braised it in san marzano tomatoes, curry, and garlic until the tender meat fell off the bone.

For times when I just want a quick and easy dinner, I love eating a pork chop, and because of my food sensitivity, I only buy pork from clean sources like Bavette because my body will not tolerate what most markets sell. I love having the extra fat to crisp up and add to other things I am making.

Sometimes quick and easy heat it and eat it is the way to go, especially at the end of a long day when the comfort of being home outweighs any desire to go out or cook. The frozen Bison Cottage pie is topped with wonderful mashed potatoes and filled with bison, carrots, and peas. It was so good that next time I am going to get extras for my “just in case” freezer stash.

The ultimate comfort food may be chicken pot pie, and when someone else does all the cooking and all you have to do is put it into the oven, that is the best of all worlds! The crust was perfect, and the filling was so good that I literally slurped up the last bits 🙂

Hmmm I think it’s time to place another order….

Eataly Eyfest part 2 🙂

Most of the raw ingredients were fairly priced for the quality.




 A fair price for this quality of canned tuna.

 Olive oil sold by the size/weight.

The most outrageous price of anything I saw in the market; you can buy these salts online nearly anywhere for the same price as 1 OUNCE here, you can buy 2 POUNDS!

 Huge bulk quantities does not mean you get a price break.

 Large selection is nice to peruse…


I miss my former butcher shop Lindy & Grundy, but I’ve found Garni Meat Market, a small family run place in Pasadena that not only sells meat, but will cook it for you for no extra charge! Whole Foods finally started doing this, but Garni has been including this service for years!

This small family owned and run shop carries quality raw meat and poultry, marinated meats, and sides galore.

This home made recipe of a creamy spinach spread was just one of many delicious options available alongside hummus and olive dips.

If you want to create your own custom recipe, they have walls and shelves stocked with spices, olives, oils, syrups, flavored waters, rice, beans, and pastas. Everything in the shop is spotlessly clean, well organized, and high quality.

It was much too hot to cook, so I asked them to do it for me:) I loved their spicy chicken wings (hot enough for me, so maybe too hot for people who don’t like flames in their mouth) and succulent pork chops. The beef was tender, but next time I will make that myself since my idea of rare really only translates well in Europe. The bread underneath soaked up all the natural juices and even though I said I only wanted enough for two meals, this was enough food to last me for FOUR, and all for under $25, including a pound of the spinach dip!

If you are even close to this neighborhood, stop by with some ice packs and a cooler to take home some of their meat, or just have them cook for you and enjoy a picnic or party at home without any effort!

Grand Central Market has evolved into a food mecca, with far too many great options to try all in one day, but a friend and I tried to eat our way through the market anyway 🙂

We started off at Belcampo with their $14 lamb burger, made with garam masala aioli, tamarind chutney, mint, cilantro, and red onion on a wonderfully soft bun. I love that all their meats are grass fed and that they have complete control of every aspect of their operation from raising the animals to processing and butchering them. Yes, the prices here are higher than your local chain grocery store, but I prefer to buy less from places with practices I want to promote, than feed the corporate machinery.

We split the medium rare burger and loved the textures and flavors. If we had not planned to try other places in the market, we would have eaten one of these each!

We also shared a plate of the sweet potato fries, seasoned with celery salt, and they were so crisp, salty, and sweet that we fought over the last fries!

Ramen Hood was our next course. It was the only vegan ramen I’ve ever tried, with sunflower seed broth, king oyster mushroom, bean sprouts, scallions, and chili threads, we added a vegan egg for $2 more making the total bowl $12. It was much better than we imagined, with full flavors and the “egg” not only looked like an egg, but the texture was very close to one. A satisfying bowl, but next time I think I would try the spicy version that I saw my neighbors eating at the counter simply because I think some added heat might enhance the flavors even more.

We were pretty full but wanted to try a small bite at Madcapra, made with locally sourced organic ingredients, so we got just the green falafels for $3.50. They were dry and bland on their own, but once we added the dipping sauces, they were good.

Sticky Rice serves organic locally sourced Thai comfort food, like this rice noodle plate with beef that was so big I had to take half of it home! The assortment of condiments was a very nice way to add heat and zing to any dish on their menu.

We ended our eating spree with a walk to the now closed Fabrique for some lattes; I chose the lavender, which was smooth and creamy

and my friend had the rainbow latte, a beautiful ending to a great day of food:)

Good cooks insist on good ingredients for their creations, and Melissa, the creator of the Pig & Pastry Pie Co., uses only the best for her delicious chicken pot pies and beef pot roast pies. It helps that her day job is manager of my favorite butcher shop, Lindy & Grundy. Pig & Pastry Pie Co. is her “side gig” and she personally makes the pies on her time off from the shop.

If you have never had a home made pot pie or shepherd’s pie, Melissa’s will set the paradigm so high that you might be unwilling to ever try to make your own. My favorite is the chicken pot pie which is loaded with wonderful bite sized pieces of chicken, carrots, and peas. This is comfort food at its most noble, with a pastry crust that is so flaky and crisp, I devoured it (and I almost never eat any crust).

The filling is a sumptuous blend of all the creamy goodness you want in a comfort dish. Seasoned perfectly with hints of thyme, this pie manages to be both upscale and old school rustic at the same time. I should probably fill my freezer with these vacuum sealed frozen pies for the apocalypse (assuming we will have electricity or gas during the end of the world).

The beef pot roast pie has a mashed potato and TRUFFLE topping, so it is more of a shepherd’s style pie than a pot pie with a flaky crust. Like all the pies, it is vacuum sealed and frozen so you can easily store and bake it at your convenience.

 When it is baked it is a meat and potato lovers paradise of a meal.

The interior is a hearty blend of pot roast, carrots and celery. My only critique of this pie is that the mashed potato topping was a bit salty. Having truffles in it made me eat more of it, but for those who are sensitive to salt, the chicken pot pie would be a better choice.

Unfortunately these pies are only available at Lindy & Grundy right now, but fortunately that means you will have to go to the best butcher shop in Los Angeles:)

I’ve been tweeting with @TheFemmeButcher aka Amelia, since last year when she married Erika, and they started their road trip to Los Angeles. They opened Lindy & Grundy, a butcher shop which offers local, pasteurized, and organic meats.

I felt like the woman in the commercial who chants “Open, open, open” as I awaited their Grand Opening. Having a conscientious butcher shop in Los Angeles with owners who are conscious of their impact on both their customers and their vendors, is a godsend in this age of factory farms and antibiotic laden meats. They make their own bacon, sausages, aged beef, and meals to go like espresso chili and roasted chickens. This is the only place I know of in the city where you can get farm fresh eggs.

I had a rather unusual request from a friend for beef eyeballs. I was just the delivery person, so I have no idea what she is doing with her order, but this was the only shop I knew of who could possibility fulfill that request! Erika said that she wasn’t even trained on how to get this product out of the carcass, but that didn’t stop her from figuring it out and getting the order filled!

For MY meal, I wanted some pork chops and got these beauties, each about an inch thick and absolutely tender.

They also have fresh poultry, so I got some chicken wings and made my own spicy rub to make these the ultimate finger food. For those who want pre-made mixes, they have them for every type of meat and taste in the shop.

My new favorite sausage are the pork kimchee sausages; if you love spicy artisanal food, you will love these!

For a less spicy, but very tasty substitute, try their kielbasa or andouille, which are tied in second place as my favorites.

I went back in last week for lamb, but their delivery had not yet been delivered. I am looking forward to tasting their beef, but by the time I get to their shop, it is always sold out (except for their grinds). In the meantime, I have enjoyed their bacon, sausages, chicken, and pork chops. They will have aged steaks ready this week-end for the holiday, so go and get some for your grill!

Amelia even “gift wrapped” my special order for me!

Call ahead or check their Facebook page if you are looking for something specific. They recently purchased a refrigerated truck, so if you don’t live the in area, they will be delivering soon! When you go in, tell them Elaine with the eyeball order sent you (o) (o)!




%d bloggers like this: