Real Farm Holidays

Kirkwood Real Farm Holidays > Real Farm Food

Real Farm Food

Kirkwood is an unspoilt, natural, extensive farm in South Scotland.  We specialise in holidays and we produce beef and lamb that really tastes good!

NOW available for home delivery!!!  (£15 standard delivery charge per pack but certain areas may vary, simply email us your order, depending on availability)

Reared on Kirkwood’s lush fields, our lambs & cattle are about the purest.  We farm in the most natural of ways – minimal use of drugs, fertilisers or chemicals.  Our animals have a good life with natural food, which ensures the highest quality.

Cows backgroundKirkwood Lamb

We keep both lambs and cattle till they are older to give more flavour, and all animals are killed humanely at the local abattoir and then cut by a local butcher. Most importantly the carcasses are hung for the optimum length of time.

Mostly we sell our meat in PACKS. Weights are approximate (because sizes of joints and animals differ). Sometimes  we make up packs slightly differently. Our prices are unashamedly higher than the cheapest meat in supermarkets but our packs are very good value for the top quality meat we produce.

For a printable copy of our meat leaflet click here.


Lamb (or hogget)

Frozen Meat vs Fresh Meat

Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall in his brilliant book “The River Cottage Meat book” says:

“Good quality extensively reared meat that has been well hung and skilfully butchered will emerge from a freezer with great credit – far, far better eating than poor-quality fresh meat.”   “At home we eat a lot of beef and hogget that has been frozen, all of which has been properly hung and we are confident that it makes for far better eating.”

“So if you can source a ready supply of top-quality meat but its location makes regular purchases difficult then you should certainly consider buying in bulk for the freezer.”

Everyone who cooks meat should have this book!

What Makes Meat “Taste”?

The taste of meat is really important, yet it has been lost by supermarkets. Why does some meat taste good while some is bland?

Of all the reasons, the key factor is hanging. The carcass must be hung properly. Beef must be hung for at least 3 weeks and lamb for at least a week. The next most important factor is the age of the animal. Too many are killed too young for supermarkets – this helps profit but ruins the taste. Cattle should be around 24-30 months old, while lamb should be 7 months to a year or more – this is often known as hogget.  Age gives the meat flavour – for an even stronger flavour try mutton, but of course its tougher. With hogget you get tenderness and flavour!

Hanging the BeefButchered Beef

The next most influential factor is food – what the animal has been eating! Grass is the best and most natural food. Fat content can be good not bad. Consumers used to shun fat on meat, mainly for health reasons but fat is worth its value as it provides much of the flavour. So let it flavour the meat while it cooks, then throw the fat away, don’t eat it.

Other factors are more minor:- stress should be minimised and there’s country of origin and breed. Obviously both the cut of meat and cooking make a big difference!

All our animals are killed locally – Lockerbie – with minimal stress and are 100% Scotch ! Cattle are Aberdeen Angus crossed.

“The Best beef I, and my guests, have ever tasted” Roger Windsor – International Vet

“Absolutely Delicious” Fiona Armstrong – TV Broadcaster

“I’m a firm believer in hogget and Kirkwood’s is absolutely top notch” Hugh Fernley-Whittingstall – TV Chef

“I’m coming back to Kirkwood for several reasons, but one is to buy more lamb!” Anonymous holidaymaker

Home Made Meals

Our highly popular ready meals can be waiting for you when you arrive in your cottage – already defrosted and just need to be removed from the foil package and put in the microwave.  Alternatively, they could be kept frozen eaten later in the week – whichever you choose.  All you need to worry about is the accompanying vegetables.

Top quality meat from Kirkwood is used. Each pack contains around 1lb (0.5kg) of meat so is designed for 2 people although we’ve known that a whole pack can be eaten by 1 hungry man!

Choose from:

Lasagna A well-known Italian dish, cooked slowly with the meat absorbing all the tomatoey bolognese flavours and topped with a creamy cheese sauce.
Cottage Pie Filling and warming, the mince and vegetables are full of flavour and with a covering of soft mashed potato.
St Anne’s Beef Cooked perfectly in the Aga, this is a delicious casserole with mushrooms and in a rich sauce using redcurrant jelly and Worcester sauce – a Steel favourite.
Carbonnade of Beef A popular casserole with onions and carrots and the vital ingredient – beer! But it is not in the least “beery” making a truly mouthwatering stew.

We also usually have our own freshly laid free range eggs available to buy, only £6 per dozen.

veg gardenPick your own Fruit & VegPick your own Fruit & Veghens

Fishing & Foraging
If you fish in our Lochan Pond you may take some Rainbow Trout to eat please ask for details.  Also foraging for fruits, we often have vegetables for sale and you can even pick your own mushrooms BUT take care with these – we recommend some advise before picking mushrooms – see our Mushroom School.

If you don’t have Adobe Acrobat Reader, download it here Download Adobe Acrobat Reader