The Weston A. Price Way

Thursday, January 17, 2013

Stretching Grass-Fed Meat Dollars: ROASTS

Beef from happy, healthy, humanely treated,
drug- and pesticide-free cows makes for
happier, healthier humans.
For people making the transition to pasture-grazed meats, the shift in cost may cause wind to leave the lungs. We are making the shift knowing that in the long run, along with other shifts made with a Traditional Diet, we will be lowering doctor and dental bills. In the long run, our health will improve, our children will be sick less often, and we will...yes, we money.

But in the short run, the run where we can't see the forest for the trees, it can be a bit overwhelming.

What to do?

Dig in your heels and learn from others. Try taking classes from someone fantastic like Wardeh at GNOWFGLINS (see links below). There are others, many others, as well. (Again, see links below.) Some things you can even learn right here! ;0)

Learn how to make luscious and over-the-top nutritious bone stock from those pasture-grazed hens you bought from the farm just last week. Eat a roast chicken dinner and save leftover meat and bones. Make bone stock and combine it with meat, (or not because it will be so tasty there really isn't an absolute need for meat to accompany it), for at least 2 more meals. (Think soups, stews and casseroles.)

Now that hen has served you well for three meals. Divide her cost by 3 to pat yourself on the back about not eating at Chic-Fil-A. Three in your family? Do the math and figure how much you paid per meal as compared to those nasty, nasty kids' meals touted as healthy because of a few meager changes. And when tempted to think of the hens at the grocers, remind yourself of all the things in them that aren't in the meat you're eating from the local pasture-grazing farm.

Okay. So you bought the brisket? (I hope you did because when cooked correctly, it gives a real bang for the buck!). It was so delicious using the farmer's wife's super easy recipe, wasn't it? Okay, okay, I'll give it to you in the next post and tell you where I get my brisket, just in case you're reading this and a local yocal...But be prepared for beggings for more, more, more! It's so good, my family gushed for joy when I announced I was going to include it with our Thanksgiving Dinner two months ago.

But now, there are the leftovers, and you sure don't want to waste them. In fact, I have found I have become far less wasteful since we changed our eating habits. I'm glad we have backyard, free-range chickens for eggs, (omnivoures, by the way), so when we have leftovers that don't go to the compost, they can eat them. I have to say, this winter, they haven't even slowed down on laying! It's amazing. We even give them some of our older real (raw) milk. They think they've died and gone to heaven when we hand them a pan with milk and bread. (Don't give them moldy bread, folks...It's as bad for them as for us.)

Okay, back on target: Roasts.
Leftover roast anything is good as a barbecue. (In our area, pork is the favored meat.) Do you have your favorite sauce? If not, I have a great one for you and if you make the brisket spoken of above, there will probably have enough sauce leftover without needing to make more.

Now, there are roasts and there are roasts. The best ones for barbeque are the ones that have been slow-cooked 'til they're falling apart. Sr. Chief (my hubby) is such a barbeque snob! He has this one place on the edge of Williamsburg that he grew up going to as a boy. It started as a roadside stand. Now it's a full-fledged restaurant with standing room only during lunch hour...except on nice days when you're welcome to use the picnic tables outside as well. Anyway, it's the barbeque love of his life and making anything comparable is a real challenge.

Well, Sr. Chief loves my barbeque and all I do now is use my farmer's wife's recipe for brisket sauce (opting for organic ingredients as possible) and add cinnamon to taste. I mean it. That's it.

In our household, the meat practically swims in sauce. We just add a bun and optional cole slaw....or even omit the bun, if you're me.

Of course, you don't have to use the sauce from my farmer's wife's recipe. I realize there are as many 'Best Barbeque Sauces In the WORLD' out there as there are jelly beans in Peter Rabbit's factory. Sauce choice is really your call. The real idea here is not about sauce, it's about stretching that food dollar.

Turning leftover roast into a barbeque dinner is the perfect way to do it. Round dinner out with some coleslaw or consider making a tiny change to fermented sauerkraut or kimchi to increase nutrients and help your tummy digest that meat more easily. Feel free to add a side of hushpuppies to create real Southern appeal...I just happen to have a great soaked grain hush-puppy recipe for them-again, better for digestion and better nutrient-density.

Additionally, I know it's a lot of starch, but some say you just don't 'do' barbeque without fries. So,

A Typical "Pulled Pork" sandwich with cole slaw will usually
look something like this. In the South, it is usually made from
pork shoulder. But when we're talking barbeque, just about any meat
 that will shred after long and low cooking will suffice.
 (Be an explorer!)
if you want to include fries, consider fermented. A friend brought them to a Weston A. Price local chapter meeting and the taste would take you back to momma's...well, no, maybe grandmomma's kitchen. Here are the how-to's...and the modern science/technology behind the whys of fermented fries. And when you're through reading, you'll probably say, as I did..."Well, who knew???"  If not now, perhaps later, you can give them a try.

Don't be afraid to buy grass-fed from local farmers if and when possible. Don't be afraid of the larger cuts, rather than just tickling your toes in the shallow waters of hamburger. Don't be afraid to ask about specials and discounts...If anybody understands the need to stretch dollars, the farmer, his wife and his children, do. (Our farmer gives free meat with orders of $100.00 or more.)

And do be sure to come back for the next post so you can give the brisket recipe a try!

Photo Credit:  (Why not pay them a visit?)
Photo Credit: BBQ Sandwich:  (Why not pay them a visit?)

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