Kinnealey Meats: Something Different For Burger Friday

It's a sad day on the Burger Friday front as it didn't seem fair for me to review a burger this week when my palate and taste buds still don't seem to be cooperating and functioning at their 100% best (thank you very much head cold). But does that mean I can't talk about meat? I hope not...

I had the pleasure of being invited to tour the Brockton-based Kinnealey Meats which is a family-run and local provider of top-quality meats to countless restaurants throughout New England.  This tour came at a perfect time for me personally because at school these past couple of weeks the focus has been on various varieties of meats and I was psyched to get a sneak peek at what it's really like at a meat packaging and distribution plant.

It was so cool (literally) as me, Burger Boy and Maggi, from Kinnealey Meats traipsed through the spacious and quite chilly refrigerated rooms where the meat is stored, broken down and carefully packaged up to ensure that the product gets to its final destination safely and without compromising quality.

It was fascinating to see how quickly the workers break down the meat, especially when I think back to the first time I pulled out my brand new boning knife and broke down a 15 lb. chuck and how long that took me to do that.  I've gotten better and a little quicker since then but I'm sure these guys could have broken down a whole cow, blindfolded and with one arm tied behind their back, without even breaking a sweat.

In addition to drooling over the rows and rows of high quality meats, it was fascinating to learn about the whole process and the care they take in filling each order they receive.  I was particularly interested to learn about how their burgers are made.  They first take chuck and then run it through this machine that safely washes the meat and virtually eliminates any risk for E.Coli.  (This is not a usual process, in fact, they are the only ones that take this extra step.)  Then the meat gets ground up and is hand packaged and shipped off to its destination without any additives or colorings.

I think that it's so very important to learn about where food comes from in order to respect it fully and also to get a better understanding of how to best prepare it.  When it comes to preparing meat, or anything for that matter, half the battle is understanding it fully.  Where each piece comes from and how to make it the most flavorful it can be through various cooking methods and techniques.  It was refreshing to be able to poke around an entire company with my camera and have there be no secrets and surprises.  In fact, pictures were encouraged and the passion that they have for what they do was clear.  After all, doesn't that make for the best kind of meats?

Special thanks to Kinnealey Meats for showing us around their shop!


Emily @ A Cambridge Story said...

That's a lotta meat! I agree that you respect food much more when you understand its origins. I feel that way about seafood after attending a NEAQ dinner.

Alicia said...

What a cool opportunity. Its really interesting to see all the steps in how food gets to our plates.

Chung said...

As I am called "Captain Safety" around our house....I was wondering where I can purchase their ground beef. I am impressed about the extra sanitizing step they use.

Maggi said...

RT Chung: You can purchase Kinnealey ground chuck at three locations: Fruit Center Marketplace, in Milton MA- the retail shop is inside the market.
You can also find it at John Dewar in Newton Center and John Dewar in Wellsley MA.

Jen said...

Looks like a fun thing to have learned about. I agree that understanding your food helps you appreciate it better.

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