Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Non-vegetarians coming to Canada

Picture of the inside of a meat shop in Brampton.

When we first got here, our first trip to the grocery store was so confusing to say the least. Being non-vegetarians, the meat section was where we went to get some chicken. From organic, halal to lean and minced, with skin, skinless, with bones, boneless etc there is just so much to chose from..besides the different parts of the chicken (packages with only wings, only legs, only thight, only breast etc) ,then they have beef, fish, and meat (lamb and veal).

Something we have noticed is that the name 'mutton', does not seem to be used here, and if you go to and Indian restaurant and want 'mutton', look for 'goat meat', on the menu instead. They don't have mutton biriyani, they have goat biriyani. Strange, right?

So you can either pick up your meat from the regular grocer or from a meat shop. When comparing prices, for a package of ten to twelve chicken legs and two big pieces of chicken breast from a grocer can add up to about ten to twelve dollars. They sometimes have whole chickens, but these are frozen and can take forever to defrost.

The better bet for Indian cooking is to get your meat from the meat shop. This is fresh and you can ask them to cut a whole chicken the way you want. Normally, the price of a whole chicken comes to about ten to twelve dollars according to the size.

Besides fresh chicken and goat meat, they also have chicken tikka, tandoori, masala fish, goat and chicken pickle (not really pickle, but a dry cooked dish made of these two meats) and other masala coated meats that you can buy and grill or barbeque at home.

Above shows two of the Tandoor chickens available at the store with the prices per pound. There are NO flies, and the place is really clean with no smell of raw meat. They have machines for cutting the meat parts that have bones, so you get finely cut pieces.

Picture of raw chicken legs...you buy it by weight or number of pieces, that he will weight and price accordingly.

Since the meat shop is just a three minute drive from our home, I find this place really convenient. The quality of meat is outstanding...and the 'mutton' from here is really soft and delicious!!

One more thing, here in Canada, prices of chicken and goat meat are more or less the same, unlike India where mutton can be pretty expensive. Recently I picked up some Thilapia fish and fried it with Indian masala. It tasted really good. Four fillet pieces (which I cut into half as they were pretty big pieces) came to about six dollars.

If you have kids though...be ready to eat at KFC, McDonalds and other fast food places more often than not!!

Happy eating!

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