Australia and Wales unite to showcase ‘lightning lamb’

Jamie Heinrich and Richard Roderick at the HCC lightning lamb cook-off
  (Photo: HCC )

Representatives from the Welsh and Australian industries have joined forces to demonstrate lamb as a quick meal option. 

Citing research that indicates the average British family spends only 32 minutes preparing an evening meal – in contrast to an hour in 1980, Hybu Cig Cymru - Meat Promotion Wales (HCC) is using this as an opportunity to highlight the simplicity of lamb.

In an effort to emphasise the ease with which it is cooked, HCC recruited the help of Australian farmer Jamie Heinrich and Richard Roderick, a farmer from Breconshire, Wales, to take part in a cook-off at the recent Royal Welsh Winter Fair in Builth Wells.

Heinrich, of Kangaroo Island off the coast of Adelaide, runs a 200-acre holding farm for Poll Merino and White Suffolk sheep. He was visiting Wales as part of a Nuffield Australia scholarship to study how to encourage young people into the industry.

“When I came over to Wales, I certainly didn’t anticipate getting involved in a cook-off to promote lamb,” he said. “Many of the challenges for the industry – recruiting younger farmers and making sure that lamb is appealing to young consumers who are pushed for time – are the same the world over. I’m very much looking forward to the rest of my trip to Wales and Europe.”

Roderick, meanwhile, is a past HCC scholar and has several farming accolades under his belt. Earlier this year he featured on Nadiya’s British Food Adventure on the BBC.

Roderick, who cooked a pan-fried leg steak with red wine sauce, and Heinrich, who produced a rapid Welsh Lamb stir-fry with oriental flavours, were joined by HCC cook Elwen Roberts.

“It was great fun to challenge the farmers to come up with a quick and tasty recipe,” explained Roberts. “They both did extremely well, and the Winter Fair audience loved seeing and tasting the food.”

After the meals were judged, it was decided that a winner could not be chosen and an honourable draw was declared.

“It’s important to emphasise that lamb can be an excellent choice for a quick evening meal,” added Roberts. “HCC has recently launched a mobile phone-friendly recipe selector on the website, to help give consumers inspiration for lamb dishes while on the move.” 

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