Project Food Blog

A North African Vibe

There's a definite North African vibe going on in our place at the moment. The eldest is off to Tunisia in a few days with a friend to enjoy some 5 star luxury. Close friends of ours have just got back from an Activity Holiday in Morocco (It was so hot though that  it was more of an Inactivity holiday..) And our lodger has just moved in.... not the Italian girl that we had been expecting,  but a lovely girl from Algeria.... which is great as the kids are both learning French and also great as Sabrina loves cooking! Last night we spent a geeky evening with our mobiles looking at photos of dishes we had prepared, comparing notes on favourite foods, and swapping recipes. Saturday has already been reserved as Baking Day!

The main difference I guess between Sabrina and myself is that while we both like good honest local produce, and ethically reared meat, Sabrina is of course a Muslim, and will only eat Halal meat. I researched Halal on the internet, and came across many different and conflicting perspectives.... It's cruel, the meat is intensively farmed, it's not organic.... it isn't cruel, it is ethical... I became increasingly confused until I came across an article in The Times Online  which summed up all my  mixed feelings. I want us all to eat as a family, I don't want to go down the route of separate shelves in the fridge and separate meals,  I don't want to eat meat that has not been ethically raised or slaughtered.
I followed the link to Abraham Natural Produce and found the answer to all my culinary prayers. While not cheap, I know that there will be no conflict of interest from any of us when eating any of the meat originating from Muhammad-Ridha and Nicola Payne. The meat they produce on their farm is pure, natural, organic, slaughtered correctly and above all from animals that have been treated with compassion.

The company ethos is very simple.

They are against: cheap tasteless meat, inorganic feeds, the use of steroids and hormones, battery farming, unnatural farming methods, intensive farming, profit driven exploitation of animals and questionable "halal" meat.
They are for: quality British meat, organic and naturally reared animals, free-range farming, compassionate suppliers, small scale/local produce, a personalised service and real halal meat.

I will let you know how we get on! Cooking North African Spiced Shoulder of lamb for 10 this Friday!

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