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Tender Grassfed Barbecue: Traditional, Primal and Paleo by Stanley A. Fishman
By Stanley A. Fishman
Link to Tender Grassfed Meat at Amazon
By Stanley A. Fishman



I am an attorney and an author, not a doctor. This website is intended to provide information about grassfed meat, what it is, its benefits, and how to cook it. I will also describe my own experiences from time to time. The information on this website is being provided for educational purposes. Any statements about the possible health benefits provided by any foods or diet have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration and are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.

I do receive some compensation each time a copy of my book is purchased. I receive a very small amount of compensation each time somebody purchases a book from Amazon through the links on this site, as I am a member of the Amazon affiliate program.

—Stanley A. Fishman, author of Tender Grassfed Meat


Why I prefer Charcoal Barbecues for Grassfed Meat

By Stanley A. Fishman, author of Tender Grassfed Meat and Tender Grassfed Barbecue

Fragrant charcoal smoke rises using the techniques in Tender Grassfed Barbecue

Fragrant charcoal smoke rises.

When I think barbecue, I think about the magic of wood and charcoal, of fragrant smoke, of the heavenly smell of meat roasting in front of a charcoal fire. Yet most people have gas barbecues.

I was faced with a choice when I wrote Tender Grassfed Barbecue. Should I write it for charcoal barbecues, or gas barbecues, or both?

Writing it for both would give me the widest audience, and the most sales. Yet I chose to write it for charcoal only, though I did include a small section on how you could use a gas barbecue.

Why? Because our ancestors used wood coals, and 100 percent hardwood charcoal. I always try to honor tradition in my books, and there is no tradition in gas grilling. The traditional fuel is wood burned down to coals, or 100% hardwood charcoal. And it tastes so much better.


The Tradition of Cooking with Fire

Our ancestors cooked a great deal of their meat in front of fires. The fires were usually made of wood burned down to coals, or 100 percent wood charcoal, which has been used for thousands of years. The wood and the charcoal give a distinct and glorious flavor to barbecued meat, and have other cooking benefits that you do not get from gas.

I also like starting a fire, controlling it, adjusting the heat by how I adjust the vents, and adding flavor to the charcoal with wood and herbs. I enjoy looking at the coals, judging when they are just right to begin cooking.

I love the smell of meat roasting in front of charcoal, which mingles with the glorious smells of the fire to make my mouth water in anticipation of the joys to come.

And I love the flavor that comes only with the use of wood or charcoal, or both.

No gas grill can provide these experiences, though it is possible to get some wood taste into meat by using smoking chips with a gas grill.

And I believe that cooking with wood and charcoal adds something special to the meat, something that may even improve its digestive and nutrient qualities, since humans have been cooking this way since the beginning. I have no scientific proof of this, but I feel in my heart that it is true.

Many people who use gas barbecues talk about how they are much more convenient. But cooking with charcoal can also be very easy and convenient, as advances in barbecue technology has made it so much easier. I have developed a system, using a chimney barbecue starter, a drip pan, a meat thermometer, and a covered kettle grill, that is very easy to use and makes the most delicious barbecue I have ever tasted. This system is at the heart of Tender Grassfed Barbecue.

Starting the fire, controlling the temperature, avoiding flare-ups, and cooking the meat is very easy with this system, and I use it most days when the weather and the law allows.

And a little extra effort is so rewarding, in taste, in the pleasure of mastering fire, in the wonderful smells, and, best of all, in the delicious food it produces, which I love to eat.


Gas Barbecues Do Not Have the Magic of Charcoal

First of all, I have a confession to make. I have never used a gas barbecue. I have had friends with gas barbecues test my ideas on how to add some barbecue flavor, and have tasted the successful results.

But I have never used one. Not even once. That said, I respect the right of everybody to use the method of barbecue they prefer. And I have tasted a fair amount of barbecue cooked with gas. Some of it was good, but all of it was lacking, in my opinion. And what it lacked was the magic of wood and charcoal.

In my opinion, there is something magical about cooking with wood and charcoal, the qualities and tastes and textures it creates, which are like no others. And the smell, the wonderful, heavenly smell that makes my mouth water and gets me hungry in a way that no other form of cooking has ever done.

Finally, grassfed meat, my favorite food in all the world, and charcoal cooking were made for each other, being perhaps the oldest food of mankind, cooked in the most traditional way. This union of fuel and meat, when done right, appeals to a taste that seems to be coded into our very genes.

People have been eating meat cooked with fire for a very long time, since the beginning. People have only been using gas for barbecue since the twentieth century.

For these reasons, barbecue means wood and charcoal, to me.

This post is part of Fat Tuesday, Real Food Wednesday, and Fight Back Friday blog carnivals.


Primal Fuel, Primal Meat, Total Satisfaction

By Stanley A. Fishman, author of Tender Grassfed Meat

Tender grass-fed Porterhouse steak barbecued by Stanley A. Fishman

Barbecued Grassfed Bone In Porterhouse

The taste of the most basic and primal of foods, grassfed meat, cooked with one of the oldest and most traditional fuels, 100 percent hardwood charcoal, is the best. Not only to me, but to countless millions of people.

The Primal Taste of Primal Meat

There is something about the taste of this food—one of the oldest taste combinations known to humanity—that calls to us, awakens old primal memories, and is satisfying like no other food. When we smell this meat cooking, we instinctively salivate, as our bodies recognize that the smell means good food is on the way. The salivation signals our bodies to get ready to eat, and the digestive system prepares for action. We get hungry and our sense of taste and smell is somehow enhanced. We become hungry, and hungrier, as the smell changes as the meat finishes cooking. When we finally bite into the tender meat, and taste the primal flavor of the charcoal-imbued meat, the satisfaction is unequaled, we want more, and the meal becomes a joy to be savored.

Somehow, this meat is incredibly easy to digest, and we do not feel stuffed or bloated. We eat with eager hunger until we have had enough, and the hunger ends. The feeling of satisfaction and well-being we get from such a meal is unique, not matched by any other food.

Why Primal Meat Cooked with Primal Fuel Tastes So Good

Meat and fat have been prized by most of humanity for countless thousands of years. This may be our oldest cooked food. I have studied the traditional cooking of almost every European, North American, Asian, and Latin American nation in the world. I have also studied some of the cooking of the Middle East, Micronesia, and Africa. Just about every traditional cuisine treasured meat cooked with charcoal or wood coals, though people were often unable to get it. Even today, barbecue excites people like no other food.

I believe that barbecued meat is so popular because humanity has been eating it for so long. The love of it may be in our very genes, and our bodies have adapted to recognize and digest it easily.

We now have a fear of barbecue, created by studies claiming that barbecued meat contain substances that could cause cancer. However, none of those studies involved primal meat that was cooked with primal fuel. The traditional peoples studied by Dr. Weston A. Price cooked meat this way, and cancer was unknown to them.

Much of what is now called barbecue is a sad imitation of the real thing, scorched, tasteless, or sooty.

We can recreate the primal taste of primal meat cooked with primal fuel. All we need is primal meat, primal fuel, and the right method.

Primal Meat

This can only be 100 percent grassfed and grass finished meat, or wild game, or omnivorous animals such as pigs eating their natural diet.

Most of the meat eaten in the United States is processed through a feedlot, where the animals are fed a diet of foods they would never eat in their natural habitat, and altered by chemicals and antibiotics, among other things. This causes the meat of feedlot animals to taste different, and to behave differently in cooking. Humanity never experienced this kind of meat until the 20th century.

Primal meat is the kind of meat humanity has been eating for uncounted thousands of years. Meat from animals eating their natural diet, unaltered by chemicals, drugs, and species-inappropriate foods.

Fortunately, we can get such meat today, thanks to a small but noble band of intrepid farmers and ranchers.

Primal Fuel

The kind of primal fuel we can easily get today is 100 percent hardwood lump charcoal, or the same charcoal in the form of briquets. We can also burn unsprayed, chemical-free wood down to coals.

No other fuel will do to recreate the wonderful combination of primal meat and primal fuel.

The Right Method

This involves cooking the meat in front of a fire of coals, without scorching, charring, or clouds of smoke. Traditional peoples never let the flames hit the meat, and some old time cooks warned about how too much smoke and flame would impart a nasty taste to the meat.

Interestingly enough, the substances found hazardous by the studies are created by direct high heat, especially when the flames hit the meat.

I am finishing a book on barbecuing grassfed meat that shows a method that works beautifully to create the magnificent taste of primal meat cooked with primal fuel. The book adopts traditional methods of cooking this food to our time, and the results have been absolutely delicious. I have barbecued almost every day this last spring and summer, and I have been blessed by the wonderful flavor and satisfaction of eating primal meat cooked with primal fuel.

This post is part of Real Food Wednesday blog carnival.

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