Grass-fed beef = num nums!

I needed to pick up some more raw milk from the farm a few days ago, so I first checked their Facebook page because in the past if they are sold out they post it on their page.  I didn’t see any posts about raw milk, but I did see their notice that the ordering time for December orders was in two days!  And that they would not be processing cows or pigs until around March of next year.

This brought me to a thinking session, because of the meat we purchased early this year, we only have about one beef roast and one pork roast left.  But, we’re pretty tight on cash these days, so I’ll have to put it on the credit card.  Did I want to do this?  Jesse wasn’t a lot of help in the decision making, because, as he says, I’m the one who does all the bill paying, so I have a better grasp of the finances and whether or not we can afford it.  After much internal struggles, I decided to go for it, and that we’d just put any Christmas cash gifts toward paying off the credit card.  Jesse was on board with that decision, thank goodness!

While we do buy chicken that probably isn’t as free-range as I would like, I love that we have the availability to get pastured beef and pork, meat that has not been treated with growth hormones or antibiotics.  I feel like it’s better for us even as adults, and doubly better for Ezra, who is still growing.

We buy the corriente cattle, because it really hasn’t been modified too much over the years.  It’s quite a bit leaner than other varieties, and we enjoy the flavor.  This is a sound-byte taken from the Utah Natural Meat website:

“Have you ever eaten one of those giant-sized tomatoes or  strawberries? They look great – but the taste leaves a lot to be  desired.

The same thing applies to the big beef cattle we have today and  their big steaks. We have selected for and achieved maximum size and  rapid growth and economic efficiency, but lost sight of the most  important factors in our food – the taste and the nutrition they  provide.

Corriente cattle are one of the very few remaining breeds of  old-fashioned cattle.   Corriente cattle look and perform today just as  they did when they got off the boats with Columbus and Cortez and became  the first American cattle.

The big cattle have high levels of growth hormone in their  system, which helps increase their size but also increases their food  requirements and their need for grain. The grain changes the composition  of the fat in their meat – the Omega 3 fatty acids essentially  disappear. There are many positive health benefits for consumers from  the Omega 3 acids. The grain also tends to give the meat a more bland  flavor – compared to the rich full flavor of a Corriente that can be finished on grass alone or with very little grain.

Yes, modern cattle have great big steaks and can be put on your  plate for less money. But if tenderness, juiciness and taste are important to you, and if the nutritional issues of fewer calories, less  fat, less cholesterol, and healthy Omega 3 fatty acids matter to you,  you might think of spending a little more for a great meal of nutritious  Corriente beef.”

Ted Hoffman, DVM

So we think we will stick with the corriente beef for now.

The more reading I do about fermenting food and drink, the more I’m convinced we need to be implementing more fermentation into our diet.  We already have the kombucha that we drink, but then I saw an article not long ago about fermenting garlic!

garlic

It’s a pretty simple process.  Just take a ton of peeled garlic cloves, add a brine, let sit for months.  And that’s it!  You can add the fermented garlic to food dishes, eat it plain, add the brine water to a salad dressing, the possibilities go on and on!  The photo above was taken about 5 days into the process.  I had tightened the lid completely, which I didn’t realize I wasn’t supposed to do, and when I checked on it, I saw the lid top was very tight, full of pressure.  When I cracked the ring seal, the CO2 came rushing out and it was fizzing like crazy!  You can see some of the bubbles in the photo.  So now I have the seal cracked to allow gas to escape so I don’t make the jar explode.  There are crocks and fermenters that let products off-gas on their own, but I didn’t feel like I could justify the purchase at this time.  So, I’ll go this way and it we really get into fermenting in the future perhaps will look into the Pickl-It jars that everyone is talking about.

I’m contemplating trying to make kimchi as I understand the homemade variety is super beneficial to gut health.  I’m not huge on fermented/sour food, but I did grow to like kombucha, so it’s probably just that I’ll have to get an acquired taste for other fermented items.  I need to get Ezra on board as well, to beef up his immune system.  Wish me luck!