Listen up. Beef comes from cattle. Mutton comes from sheep. Venison is from deer, pork is from pigs, chicken is from poultry – common knowledge you say? Yeah, I don’t believe you.
Bear with me. If beef comes from cows, this means that veal comes from baby cows, yes? So if mutton comes from sheep and not mutton birds, then lamb must come from baby sheep, right? Baby sheep, yeah, also known as lambs. Sounds simple enough: lamb meat comes from lambs, right. So what’s the issue?
Alright then smartarse, tell me, what defines a lamb? A baby sheep, yes, you said.
Therefore, when you enter a supermarket and purchase an exorbitant leg of ‘lamb’, you are purchasing a leg of, as you said, baby sheep, or lamb’s meat. Funny how supermarket butcheries don’t ever seem to sell legs of ‘mutton’ anymore, it’s always ‘lamb’…
I call bullshit on this whole bloody wrought that is supermarket marketing.
These are the facts. A lamb is a sheep which is under one year of age. After that, it becomes a hogget. The following year, this sheep will graduate ovine university as a two–tooth. Year after that, four-tooth; year after that, six-tooth and so on.
Now. Here’s my issue. This sheep meat that people see on supermarket butchery shelves with the regulation three hundred percent mark up on what the farmer is paid, labelled ‘lamb’, I guarantee is more than one year of age; in fact it’s probably more than two years of age. ‘Lamb chops’? Yeah, nice one. Have you even seen the chop from a lamb? It’s a pathetic, scrawny little specimen containing about as much meat as one might find between one’s teeth after a real feed of mutton steak. Then they sell these massive hunks of red meat and have the audacity to call them ‘legs of lamb’. The leg from a genuine lamb is about as big as a man’s foot and it’s pink, not red. Additionally if it’s ‘lamb sausages’ you’re into, yeah, you’re likely buying four or even six-tooth sheep meat. Not lamb at all. Not even close.
I guess ‘lamb’ does sound rather more palatable than ‘six-tooth sheep meat’ though, doesn’t it?
Article by Tim Walker
Edited by Mark Kittens-Cam
Photography by Thea Vings-Wine