Festive flavours flow in campus butchery


Apprentices Bronson Aurisch, Joshua Duncombe and lecturer Rick Griffiths in the butchery at Alice Springs campus.

With Christmas fast approaching, it will come as no surprise that the main topic of conversation in Charles Darwin University’s butchery has taken on a distinctly festive flavour.

Lecturer Rick Griffith’s primary focus during the final training blocks of the year, in Darwin and Alice Springs, has been to prepare apprentices for the Christmas peak.

“The lead up to Christmas is one of the busiest weeks in Territory butcher shops and they need all hands on deck,” Rick said.

“The focus these past two weeks has been to reinforce the skills, knowledge and confidence of apprentices so they can be of maximum benefit to their employers.

“We’ve been learning to cure a variety of products, which involves making Christmas leg hams, pickled pork, rolled loin of pork and a variety of beef roasts.

“We also look at how to prepare prawns and other seafood that is traditionally popular at Christmas time.”

Rick said the Certificate III Meat Processing (Retail Butcher) students would explore some of the principles of “complementary foods”.

“We’ll look at what goes with what from the perspective of flavour and nutrition, and also from aesthetic and thematic points of view.

“If you get the mix right you can turn an ordinary meal into something sensational,” he said.

This is the sixth Christmas that Rick has been working alongside butchery students.

“It is rewarding to see graduates from previous years working in industry in Alice Springs, Darwin and elsewhere throughout the Territory.”

Rick said his Christmas lunch would once again feature a choice selection of cold cuts.

“It has become a family tradition, probably because it’s practical, but cold cuts are pretty popular in the heat of summer,” he said.

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