Special Order Beef

Many of you have asked questions about the beef for special order.  I have updated the special order menu in the top menu bar to provide more information on costs, type of beef and recipes.  Call Pattie at 470-1969 or email at shares@beneficialfarm.com if you have additional questions.  I have posted the grass-fed and grass finished information below as well as roast recipes.  Stay tuned for steak and ground beef recipes.  There will be fantastic burger recipes with this beef posted next week.

If you have recipes using the Beneficial Farms beef, please email them to blog@beneficialfarm.com and I can post them.

Amy Hetager, CSA Blogger

What is the benefit of Grass-Fed and Grass-Finished?

Health: The cows that are grass-fed and grass-finished are up to one third leaner than grain-fed cows.  Most cuts of the beef are as lean as commercial skinless chicken breasts and bison, according to www.eatwild.com.  Because this beef is leaner, it is lower in calories and includes more Omega-3s.

Environment: Grass-fed cows use less fossil fuel than the grain-fed cows that require processed corn and soy.  They also work with the environment, helping to slow global warming.  There is more information on the website below.

This website is owned by a grain-fed researcher and I highly recommend reading it to become more familiar with the type of beef available at the farm.

Click here to see more information

How do I prepare grass-fed and grass-finished beef?

Grass-fed beef has a more intense and varied flavor than other beef and simple cooking techniques will allow that flavor to come out, especially in the steaks.  The beef will taste like more like meat instead of fat.  Since the beef is also leaner, lower cooking temperatures than the same cuts of grain-fed are recommended to avoid burning the meat.

Recipes:

Receiving a quarter of a cow provides a lot of variation in the cuts, maybe more than you have purchased when picking them individually out at the Farmer’s Market or the store.  The cooking processes are also slightly different due the leanness of the meat.  It may take 30% less time to cook this beef than grain-fed cuts, so be careful not to overcook.  Also, do not pierce the meat with a fork or it will lose juices and not be as tender.  There are several more tips in the sites below.

Here are some great tips to read before you start cooking

http://www.americangrassfedbeef.com/tips-for-cooking-grass-fed.asp

The same website also has an article on cast iron cooking with your steak

http://www.americangrassfedbeef.com/cast-iron.asp

The Sustainable Table website has an article discussing benefits and cooking of grass-fed beef

http://www.sustainabletable.org/features/articles/grassfedbeef/

Recipes for Roasts

In the past, I was a little reluctant to cook roasts because I did not know how to cook them and it seemed to take a long time.  Since I moved to Santa Fe, I have loved Sundays where I can put on a roast and make my house smell of lovely beef.  Those days in the fall and winter are coming and I have a few roasts in my freezer.  They really are not much more complicated than preparing dinner or starting the grill on the front end of the process.  The longer time in the oven does not require your constant attention so there is time for a great book while the roast cooks.

Here are a few recipes that are specific to grass-fed beef

Braised Beef (use almost any roast) with Paprika and Root Vegetables (including Rutabaga!)

http://localfoods.about.com/od/maindishes/r/paprikabeefbrai.htm

Beef Brisket 3 Ways

This site gives several recipes and other tips about beef

http://www.csuchico.edu/agr/grsfdbef/recipes/brisket.html

Arm Roast

When I first received this roast, I placed it in the back of the freezer to think about on another day.  I had no idea what this was or how to cook it.  Today I decided to find out my mysterious world of arm roast…and it was not so mysterious.  Arm Roast is another term for pot roast, one of the most popular Sunday dinners of my mother’s generation.  There are tons of recipes online.  If you use a wet cooking method (in sauce or broth) you don’t have to worry about it drying out.  This recipe calls for searing, so be careful in that process.

http://southernfood.about.com/od/potroastrecipes/r/r90520c.htm

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