As you’ll remember from my previous post, blogging often presents… unexpected opportunities. Such as the time I was offered a meat subscription box for review.
Now, I know what you’re thinking so first thing’s first: no, Carnivore Club isn’t going to post you a big box of steaks for pickup, seeping slightly, when you finally make it to the sorting office the one night a week it’s open after work. That would be stupid. Rather, the self-professed world first curated meat of the month club specialises in charcuterie: cured meats, supplied each month by a single UK-based culinary butcher.
April’s supplier was, appropriately enough, Scottish: Great Glen Charcuterie, a family business based in the Highlands run by husband and wife team Anja and Jan Jacob. Great Glen Charcuterie’s recipes use wild Scottish venison – a meat I’ve always felt a little squeamish about trying – to create an innovative range of chorizo, salami and salad meats.
Each Carnivore Club box includes between four and six products from that month’s featured supplier, along with a card giving a bit of background about the business and the products in the box. The Great Glen Charcuterie box included two different types of salami (venison and pork, and green peppercorn venison), two different types of chorizo (venison and pork, and chilli venison) and venison “bresaola”, which is a dry-cured, oak smoked meat taken from the rear leg.
I’ve been quite taken with chorizo since my recent Spanish cooking challenge, so I pan-fried some with chilli, garlic, sundried tomato and olive oil for a quick and easy pasta dish. The salami, I used to top some home-made pizzas (although I think the leftovers ended up in a sandwich – Stringer was rather taken with it).
The curing and packing processes mean that Carnivore Club meats will keep for a good couple of months and I think – but don’t quote me – don’t even have to be kept in the fridge until the products are actually opened. I still have a chorizo and a salami left, as well as the bresaola – which, let’s face it, I have no clue what to do with. I’ve never been one for antipasti or charcuterie-type dishes in general; and one thing that I think Carnivore Club could really benefit from is adding some serving suggestion or recipe ideas to the accompanying booklet, or even including them on its (gorgeously designed, by the way) website.
That said, at £32 for a single box – or £29 per box if you sign up for a minimum of three boxes, which you can choose to receive monthly, bimonthly or quarterly – is Carnivore Club the sort of thing you’d sign up for if you weren’t already a bit of a foodie and likely to know what you were doing? Probably not, if you’re thinking in terms of the traditional subscription box model – although I think the price point makes it ideal as a one-off gift for that non-vegetarian in your life who’s particularly difficult to buy for.
Curious? You’ve still got a couple of days in which to sign up for May’s box – which, according to Carnivore Club’s social media, features products from Sussex-based Beal’s Farm Charcuterie. Beal’s Farm products are made with Mangalitza pork – the “tastiest pork in the world”, apparently. If you sign up, let me know what you think!
This post contains PR samples, but all opinions are my own and unbiased.