By Stanley A. Fishman, author of Tender Grassfed Meat
I love to eat grassfed beef fat. I actually will put a large piece of crisp, hot, grassfed beef fat in my mouth, and eat it with great enjoyment and satisfaction.
Animal fat used to be the favorite food of most of humanity. But that has changed.
Fat is taboo. Especially animal fat. Animal fat is supposed to be the ultimate poison. Even looking at it could cause a heart attack, or so people seem to think. Well, I do not believe this anymore, especially where grassfed fat is concerned.
Grassfed fat has a very different composition than the fat of factory meat. Factory meat has far too much omega-6 fatty acids, and is lacking in CLA and various fat-soluble vitamins. Grassfed fat has a perfect omega-3 to omega-6 ratio, and is full of nutrients like CLA and fat-soluble vitamins. The healthy peoples studied by Dr. Weston A. Price ate plenty of animal and fish fat. But nutrition is not the only reason I eat grassfed fat.
Grassfed meat is delicious, but the grassfed fat on the meat can be even tastier.
One of the ways I research my books is to read old novels. Often they contain detailed descriptions of traditional meals, and how they were prepared. Time after time, I read of how the characters enjoy biting into a crisp piece of hot, roasted fat. One day, I decided to try it myself. It was absolutely delicious, crisp on the outside and melting on the inside, and so satisfying. Now I make sure to have some hot crisp fat whenever we have a grassfed roast, or pastured pork roast.
I learned that I am following an old tradition.
Some of the world’s greatest traditional delicacies consist of animal fat. Peking duck is made for the crisp skin, which is the high point of the meal. Several Asian cultures deep fry duck pieces, so the skin comes out hot and crisp. The crisp, hot, brown fat of a prime rib roast used to be prized in England. Sausages all over Europe and Russia used to be full of pastured animal fat. The taste of the hot, juicy fat squirting into the mouth when the sausage was bitten into was so prized that poems were written about it. The Native Americans prized all kinds of animal fat, not only adding it to their stews and pemmican, and using it to baste their roasted meats, but often covering their bodies with it. A steamed roast pork belly is still a festive dish in parts of China, and the fat is the favorite part. In parts of Italy, pork fat of the highest quality is spread on bread like butter. Middle Eastern skewered meats had chunks of fat on the skewer right next to the chunks of meat.
I like beef fat best when it is crisp and hot. There are several varieties of grassfed beef fat, and I like them all.
Prime rib fat has a unique, rich flavor, with a hint of sweetness.
Sirloin fat, including picanha fat, crisps up beautifully when grilled or roasted, and gives an explosion of flavor when bitten into. You can see this terrific fat in the photo above.
Caul fat (which is taken from an area near the kidneys) has a wonderful crispness and flavor all its own, and just might be my favorite.
I also love bison fat, when I can get it. It has a wonderful crisp texture when roasted, and a rich, sweet flavor.
Grassfed lamb fat is another favorite. It should be only eaten when it is very hot, as it can get greasy when lukewarm, but it has incredible flavor and a very delicate crispness when served hot.
Pastured pork fat has a nice, delicate, crisp texture on the outside, but it is the rich, creamy inside that has incredible flavor and literally melts in your mouth.
Grassfed fat and pastured pork fat can make vegetables delicious beyond belief. I will place plenty of sliced grassfed animal fat in a pan, and put it in a hot oven until enough of the fat has melted to coat the pan. I then add all kinds of vegetables, including carrots, celery, onion wedges, tomatoes, peppers, eggplant, and zucchini, in almost any combination. I will roast them together until the vegetables have caramelized beautifully in the melted fat, and are rich with concentrated flavor that is just wonderful to eat.
If you do not mind the carbohydrates, you can do the same with potatoes, or apples, or both. Not only will they be over-the-top delicious, but the melted fat that penetrates them and intensifies their flavor will provide some protection against the glycemic effects.
If you have never had vegetables roasted this way, you will not believe how good they taste. Just be sure to eat them hot. And, best of all, you will have a number of crisp, flavorful pieces of fat in the pan that are also a joy to eat.
Grassfed animal fat is full of nutrition and is absolutely delicious!
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