Tender Grassfed Meat

Jump to content.

Search

CLICK HERE TO PURCHASE

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

Archives

DISCLOSURE AND DISCLAIMER

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

Follow

Earth Day, Grassfed Meat, and Dr. Weston A. Price

By Stanley A. Fishman, author of Tender Grassfed Meat

Chest high ice cream grass at US Wellness gives superior grassfed meat.

Happy cows grazing on rich grass grown on soil restored by John Wood of U.S. Wellness Meats.

Earth Day was created to appreciate and encourage the preservation of the natural blessings of our planet. Perhaps the greatest threat to our planet and ourselves is the massive loss of good soil that has been going on since the last century. Without good soil, most life cannot ultimately survive. The attack on our soil has been led by the chemical industry, and factory farmers who abuse the land, killing the very life in the soil, causing erosion, and a reduction in usable water. Massive soil erosion leads to deserts. Yet it is not too late to save and restore our soil.

Conventional science, with its incomplete knowledge and obsessive focus on grants and profits, is not going to save us. In fact, it is the products of conventional science, such as pesticides, artificial fertilizers, modified plants and germs, and massive chemical pollution from artificial chemicals that are the greatest cause of the problem. But nature itself can save us, if we have the humility and wisdom to follow nature’s laws.

Nature itself has left a blueprint on how to make good soil, and tens of millions of desert acres have been turned into fertile grasslands, with long-dead rivers and streams coming back to life as part of the process. This was accomplished by following nature’s laws.

Dr. Weston A. Price, the pioneer who discovered the truth about nutrition, said it this way:

“Life in all its fullness is nature’s laws obeyed.”

Why Good Soil is Crucial for Life

Soil that will nourish healthy life is much more than just dirt. It is a magnificent combination of minerals, bacteria, insects, microbes, and many nutrients (including unknown substances), all coming together to form the very source of life.

Plants need soil to grow, and soil needs plants to hold it in place against wind and rain, or it just erodes away. The nutrients in the soil grow the plants that keep the soil in place.

These nutrients nourish the plants that grow in this good soil, and the nutrients go into the plants, which pass these nutrients on to the people and animals who eat them. Food plants grown in good soil contain many vital nutrients that we all need to be fully healthy. Animals grazing on these rich plants develop nutrients in their flesh, fat and organs which are crucial for human health, and which are only there if the animals get all the nutrients they require.

It is crucial to understand that science has not identified all of these nutrients, and does not know everything about how they work together. But our bodies know, and expect all these nutrients to be there in the food we eat.

Dr. Weston A. Price discovered that traditional peoples eating the diets of their ancestors, foods from animals grazing on rich soil, plants grown in rich soil, or seafood taken from the rich ocean, were immune to tooth decay. This immunity went far beyond tooth decay, as these people did not have cancer, heart disease, asthma, allergies, birth defects, mental problems, or any of the host of chronic diseases that torment modern humanity. Dr. Price understood that good soil was the mother of good food, and included a chapter on the vital importance of soil in his magnificent work, Nutrition and Physical Degeneration.

How the Soil is Lost

Growing and harvesting certain crops depletes the soil of nutrients. Farming the same soil year after year could lead to erosion. The traditional solution was to rotate fields, to let the land rest and renew, or plant certain crops that would restore nutrients to the soil. Natural fertilizers like animal manure were also used. These solutions worked, but part of the land could not be used for food crops while it rested. Science supposedly “solved” this problem by using artificial fertilizers. These fertilizers enabled crops to grow in depleted soil. The same land could be used for crop after crop, without rest. But these fertilizers only provided some minerals and nutrients, not all of them. In fact, some of these fertilizers interfered with the ability of the plants to absorb nutrients. The plants that grew from the depleted soil were weak and far less able to resist pests, so artificial pesticides were introduced. Pesticides are poisons that kill plants and insects. The introduction of these poisonous artificial chemicals into the soil changed it, having a dramatic effect on the life in the soil, and killing much of that life. Soil is also damaged and changed by artificial chemicals created by industry, which are not part of the natural cycle.

Soil is also damaged and contaminated by the huge amounts of manure and liquid created by CAFOs (Concentrated Animal Feeding Operations). The miserable animals in CAFOs are crammed together in a small space and not allowed to graze. They are fed grains and other species-inappropriate feeds. This cruel and unnatural practice creates huge lagoons of manure and urine that greatly exceed the ability of the land to absorb them.

The result of this artificial tampering with the soil was less nutrients. Plants cannot have nutrients that are not in the soil. Food animals cannot have nutrients that are not in the plants. People cannot get nutrients that are not in the plants and animal foods we eat. Our bodies cannot function properly without all the nutrients we have evolved to need.

Artificial agriculture has caused a huge loss of useable soil, a serious loss that is continuing. And the soil that remains has far less nutrients. Even in the 1940s, studies showed that fruits and vegetables had far less vitamins and minerals than vegetables grown in the 1920s. The situation is much worse today. For example, researchers have tested commercial oranges that contained hardly any vitamin C.

How Nature Makes Good Soil

We can restore the health of the soil by following nature’s laws. The Great Plains of the United States were some of the richest land ever known on earth. Before the plains were fenced and farmed, more than 60 million bison roamed the plains. The bison traveled in tightly packed herds, so they could defend each other against predators. The herd would travel into an area, eating all the grass, and breaking up the earth with their hooves and concentrated numbers, using their hooves to expose more grass. As they ate the grass, seeds would fall off and get trampled into the earth by the hooves of the massed bison. They would deposit their manure on the soil, returning the nutrients to it.

In effect, the bison actually farmed the land. They harvested the grass by eating it. They plowed the land by breaking it up with their hooves. They planted the new grass by trampling the seeds into the earth. They fertilized the land with their manure.

Then they would move on, leaving the land to rest and grow. By the time the herd returned, they would be greeted with a new crop of rich green grass, and the cycle would begin again.

All of the great grasslands in the world were created in this manner, with different types of animals and herd sizes.

But the blueprint remained the same—the animals were concentrated into tight herds, the herd grazed in a concentrated manner, then moved on, allowing the land to rest, recover, and regrow.

Many grassfed ranchers follow these methods, concentrating their herds, doing intensive grazing, then moving the herds so the land can recover. Some of these ranchers add additional natural nutrients to their soil as well. (See Grassfed Farmer Renews the Land.) Every time I buy grassfed meat, I am supporting these ranchers who are restoring the soil with their herds. Every time I eat the meat and fat from animals raised on rich grass, I am blessed by receiving a full natural range of nutrients, giving my body exactly what it needs to function properly.

These methods have been adapted and used to literally change millions of acres of desert into grassland. Even long-dead streams have come back.

We can restore our good soil to the earth, by following nature’s laws.

This post is part of Monday ManiaReal Food Wednesday and Fight Back Friday blog carnivals.

Real Food, Wise and Robust Old Age

By Stanley A. Fishman, author of Tender Grassfed Meat
Inverness Castle  Scotland
Creative Commons License photo credit: conner395.  Inverness Castle in the Scottish Highlands, home of a healthy people.

Old people in modern times are considered weak, foolish, and helpless, unable to survive without care. Most people expect to be weak and helpless when they get old, and to end their lives in a “rest home.” We often read in the news media that young workers will have the burden of taking care of an aging population.

Yet this is a new and horrible way of aging. Through most of history, old age was associated with wisdom, strength, and leadership. Most older people who ate a traditional diet not only took care of themselves, but led their communities, taught the young, and were the repository of knowledge and leadership for their peoples.

What is the difference? Why did old age change from a time of wisdom and leadership to a time of failing minds, deteriorating bodies, and chronic illness?

What we do know is that people eating the healthy traditional diets of their ancestors, with little or no medical care, remained wise and strong into their nineties.

We also know that modern people eating the Standard American Diet (SAD) become helpless in their sixties and seventies and even younger, unable to care for themselves, needing all kinds of expensive medical care and procedures just to keep breathing.

In other words, real food is the key to a wise and healthy old age.

Traditional Old Age

Throughout most of history, old age was associated with strength and wisdom.

Age was considered a prerequisite for leadership, and younger leaders always had older advisors. Every village, from England to Africa to the Americas to Russia to India to China, and almost everywhere else, depended on a council of elders, who would make decisions for the whole village, based on their experience and knowledge. It was accepted that these old people were the only ones who had the knowledge and experience to make important decisions. The knowledge of childbirth, cooking, what was safe to eat, and healing was usually taught and administered by the older women, who were universally respected.

On a national level, many traditional societies had councils of elders who would make decisions for the whole nation or tribe.

It should be understood that old people eating traditional diets were not only much wiser, but much healthier physically. History has thousands of examples of people who were “old” but showed great physical prowess. A few examples:

Gebhard Von Blucher

He was a nobleman, growing up on the finest food his culture could provide, eating huge amounts of wild game and grassfed meat.

He commanded the Prussian Army at the battles of Ligny and Waterloo, in 1815. Blucher was 73 at the time. During the battle of Ligny, Blucher led a cavalry charge against the French. His horse was shot, throwing Blucher to the ground. The horse then fell on Blucher, pinning him to the ground. The opposing cavalry forces charged several times over the area, back and forth, which resulted in Blucher being repeatedly trampled by horses, sustaining many wounds from their hoofs. After the battle, the horse was pulled off Blucher. Blucher poured brandy on his many wounds and drank some, and recovered in a few hours. He reorganized his defeated army and led them to Waterloo, a couple days later, where the sudden appearance of his army on the French flank helped the Allies win the battle.

Malcolm Macpherson

He was a Highlander, growing up on a traditional diet that had not changed for thousands of years. At age 57, he took part in the rebellion of Bonnie Prince Charlie, and fought in the battle of Culloden in 1745, wielding a heavy broadsword. Macpherson blamed the French for the Highland defeat. When Britain went to war against France some years later, Macpherson joined a Highland regiment at age 70. He fought the French in North America, using his heavy broadsword so effectively in hand-to-hand combat that he was taken to England to meet the king.

It should be understood that the above examples of robust old people were not unusual, and old people were expected to carry their weight and take part fully in all the activities of life, no matter how difficult.

Dr. Weston A. Price studied healthy peoples eating the diets of their ancestors. The elders of these people kept their teeth and their eyesight, leading active productive lives without illness or doctors. They did not live in fear of chronic diseases like cancer and heart disease—these illnesses did not exist in their societies.

In fact, studies of the healthy peoples eating traditional diets have repeatedly found that most people remain healthy and productive into their nineties or even longer. They will usually slow down at some point, where they become consistently less active for a period of several months, then die in their sleep.

These healthy peoples ate plenty of fat from grassfed animals and wild game, fatty meats, seafood, organ meats, butter, all kinds of animal fat, organic fruits and vegetables, and did not touch modern processed foods.

Modern Old Age

Old age has become a time of sickness and horror for many people eating a modern diet. Most old people are on a number of prescription drugs, and eat a diet of refined foods that does not support the functions of their bodies. Most of them are impaired in their ability to do most things and many are completely unable to care for themselves. There is no wisdom in many of these people—many of them cannot remember what they said one minute ago.

Many cannot walk unaided, and have bones so brittle they break easily. Many have had one or more of their hips and or knees removed and replaced with an artificial construct. Many are emaciated, suffering from severe malnutrition, which makes all their symptoms worse.

Many live each day in a mental fog, and do nothing useful with their time. Many have actually shrunk in size, as their bones deteriorate and collapse. Many have lost all their teeth, and rely on dentures. Many start to die as their organs stop working, suffering from problems with their hearts, livers, kidneys, digestive systems, and just about everything else.

Every function of our bodies requires proper nutrition in order to work effectively. When our bodies are starved of the vital nutrients we need, our bodies deteriorate. The longer we are starved, the faster and more serious the deterioration.

We are told that this deterioration is the inevitable result of old age. However, it appears to be a result of decades of malnutrition on the nutrient-poor modern diet of dead, refined foods.

History and the great research of Dr. Price have shown us that a diet of real, traditional food can save us from this horror. The Dietary Guidelines of the Weston A. Price Foundation are a great place to start.

Related Posts

Who Was Weston A. Price?

Eat Fat, Live Long—the Real Food of Okinawa

Call It Medical, Not Mediterreanean

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


Champion’s Portion for Saint Patrick’s Day

By Stanley A. Fishman, author of Tender Grassfed Meat

Fresh ingredients and Jameson Irish whiskey for Grass-fed Champion’s Portion with Green Marinade

Fresh ingredients and Jameson Irish whiskey for the green marinade

Saint Patrick’s Day is the ultimate Irish holiday. Ireland produces some of the best grassfed beef on Earth. The excellence of this beef is most gloriously set forth in the form of majestic roasts and thick steaks. Yet Saint Patrick’s Day in the United States is celebrated with corned beef and cabbage. This corned beef is usually a highly processed product made from factory beef.

This injustice cannot stand. This recipe celebrates the most legendary cut of Irish beef, in a marinade rich with green vegetables and green olive oil, crowned with the magnificent flavor of traditional Irish whiskey.

Ireland has always been a paradise for cattle. The rich soil and the wet climate have produced some of the greenest grass ever to grace the Earth. Ireland is so famous for its beautiful green landscapes that it is known as the “Emerald Isle,” and the color of the nation is green. The Irish tradition of raising fine grassfed cattle goes back thousands of years. The old stories make it clear that the most prized cut of beef was the chine, also known as “the champion’s portion.” This cut was reserved for the best warrior, and some of Ireland’s greatest warriors fought to the death for the honor of being served this revered piece of meat.

What is the modern equivalent of this dinner of champions? Grassfed prime rib, of course. Fortunately, we do not have to fight anybody or anything to enjoy this wonderful meat, except the always high price and some misinformed processors who trim off every bit of the magnificent fat.

Most of the beef raised in Ireland is still grassfed, and I have read it is magnificent in taste and a very satisfying thing to eat, indeed. While I do not have access to Irish beef, grassfed American beef works perfectly with this recipe.

Green is always associated with Saint Patrick’s Day, and every ingredient in the marinade is green, except the whiskey, and the plants that the whiskey was made from were green once, too.

Champion’s Portion with Green Marinade

Ingredients:

1 (4 to 5 pound) 2-bone grassfed prime rib, with fat cap

For the Marinade

1 organic green onion, finely chopped

¼ cup finely chopped green organic leek leaves (optional)

2 tablespoons flat leaf parsley, very finely chopped

1 teaspoon organic dried thyme leaves, crushed

4 tablespoons unfiltered organic extra virgin olive oil

2 tablespoons Jameson Irish whiskey

For the Cooking

1 teaspoon unrefined sea salt, crushed

Directions:

1.      The day before you plan to cook the roast, make the marinade. Combine all ingredients and mix well. Place the roast in a large glass bowl. Cover all surfaces of the roast with the marinade. Cover, and let rest at room temperature for 1 hour, then refrigerate overnight.

2.      Remove the roast from the refrigerator at least 1 hour before you plan to cook it, so the meat can come to room temperature.

3.      Preheat the oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit. When the roast is at room temperature, brush most of the marinade off the roast. Sprinkle the sea salt over the meat. Place the roast in a shallow pan large enough to hold it, bone side down. Cook in the preheated oven for 15 minutes.

4.      Baste the roast with the drippings, and cook for another 15 minutes.

5.      Turn the heat down to 250 degrees. Baste the roast with the drippings. Cook for another 15 minutes.

6.      Baste the roast with the drippings, and cook for 15 minutes more. Test the roast for doneness. If the roast is not done to your taste, continue cooking at 250 degrees, testing for doneness at 10 minute intervals.

This is a great roast to celebrate Saint Patrick‘s Day. Tender Grassfed Meat contains a recipe that provides yet another delicious way to celebrate this holiday with grassfed beef, entitled Irish Whiskey Steak.

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

Why Is Fattier Grassfed Meat Best?

By Stanley A. Fishman, author of Tender Grassfed Meat

Grass-fed sirloin roast with a delicious, nutritious fat cap.

Grassfed sirloin roast, with a delicious, nutritious fat cap.

Our culture has a phobia about animal fat. The horrid nutritional guidelines just issued by the U.S. government tell us to eat meat only occasionally, and eat only lean meat. This is truly a shame, because animal fat from pastured animals contains many vital nutrients that are easily absorbed and hard to get elsewhere. Animal fat from grassfed animals also gives great taste, tenderness, and satisfaction (unlike the lumpy, greasy fat so prevalent in factory meat).

All grassfed meat is leaner than factory meat. Many producers advertise how lean their grassfed meat is. Some grassfed meat is much leaner, and some contains more fat. So which is better? For our ancestors, the choice was simple. Fat meat was desirable and cherished—lean meat was eaten to avoid starvation or thrown to the dogs.

For me, the answer is also simple. Most of the nutrients in grassfed beef are in the fat. Fattier cuts of grassfed meat have more flavor and come out more tender. The fattier the better, when it comes to grassfed meat.

Grassfed Fat vs. Factory Fat

There is a great difference in the content and composition of the fat of grassfed animals and the fat of factory animals finished in the feedlot.

The fat of grassfed animals has a much higher ratio of omega-3 fatty acids to omega-6 fatty acids, has much more CLA, and is much richer in other nutrients. The fat of feedlot-finished factory animals has a much higher omega-6 to omega-3 fatty acid ratio, much less CLA, and contains substances from the feed that get stored in the fat.

The fat in grassfed meat appears both as a covering over the cut of meat, and in small white flecks that can be seen in the meat itself. These small flecks are called marbling. The fat of feedlot-finished factory meat also appears as a covering, but it can often be seen in the meat itself as thick, blocky veins of fat, or lumps of fat. No grass finished meat has this appearance.

I personally find the fat in grassfed meat to be delicious and satisfying. It smells so good when the meat cooks that it makes me very hungry. I find the fat in feedlot-finished factory meat to be greasy, unpleasant, and downright disgusting. Factory meat does not satisfy me, and leaves me hungry and bloated. Grassfed meat always leaves me feeling satisfied and good—which is one of the main reasons why I only eat grassfed and grass finished  meat.

What about the Studies?

The media often publicizes studies that claim that eating meat, especially fat meat, is unhealthy.

While I never blindly believe any study, knowing how flawed and biased they can be (though some are completely valid, you just have to study the details), I have noticed two important points that make them inapplicable to grassfed meat and fat:

  1. All of these studies include the eating of highly processed factory meat, meat that is full of preservatives and chemicals, such as luncheon meat. It is impossible to know if the negative results claimed by the studies come from the meat or the chemicals.
  2. None of these studies are limited to the eating of pastured meat processed without the use of chemicals, but are based almost totally on feedlot-finished factory meat that has been raised with artificial hormones, chemicals, antibiotics, species-inappropriate feed, and other factors that were never used by our ancestors. It is impossible to know if the negative results claimed by the studies come from the meat or the hormones, chemicals, antibiotics, species-inappropriate feed, or other factors, or any combination of them.

The main studies we have on the nutritional effects of traditional meats, fats, and diets are the customs of our ancestors, and the vital research of Dr. Weston A. Price. These traditions and the research of Dr. Price support the health benefits of eating traditional unprocessed animal fats.

Why Fattier Grassfed Meat Is Better than Leaner Grassfed Meat

Once again, the traditions of our ancestors are the key to understanding. Every traditional meat eating culture preferred fat meat to lean meat. Traditional recipes for meat always make sure that it is cooked and eaten with plenty of fat, with roasts being inevitably covered by a glorious crown of their own magnificent fat. The most prized, luxurious cuts of meat were always the fattest.

Traditional Inuit were known to reserve the organ meats, fatty meats, and fat for themselves, while throwing the really lean meat to their dogs.

The most valued traditional foods included the fats of pastured animals, with lard, beef tallow, goose fat, duck fat, and chicken fat being heavily used for cooking in traditional Europe. The Native Americans used bear fat, bison fat, and the fat from other game. Lamb fat was prized in the Middle East, where breeds of lamb were raised that had huge tails composed almost completely of fat, which was used in all kinds of cooking. Lard was the most important fat in China, used for cooking almost everything.

I am convinced that cooking traditions reflect the collective experience of the people who have them, representing thousands of years of trial and error, passed down from parent to child, from teacher to student. The wisdom of these traditions was proved by Dr. Weston A. Price, who discovered that traditional peoples eating their traditional diets were completely free of the chronic diseases that afflicted modern peoples, remaining healthy and vigorous into extreme old age. Every one of the peoples studied by Dr. Price only ate meat with plenty of fat.

An example of this wisdom is pemmican, a staple preserved food of the Native Americans who lived on the Great Plains of the United States. Pemmican consisted of dried bison meat, dried cherries, and a great deal of bison fat. The Native Americans knew that the fat was absolutely necessary for the pemmican to sustain life.

Most of the nutrients in grassfed meat are in the fat, not the meat itself. Very lean grassfed beef, that has no visible marbling, will have fewer nutrients than grassfed meat that is nicely marbled. A roast that has all the fat cover trimmed off will have fewer nutrients than a roast cooked with a cover of its own natural fat.

I have found that the fattier the grassfed meat, the more tender and tasty and satisfying it is. You can make lean grassfed meat tender and delicious, with the proper technique and marinades. But the grassfed meat that has the little flecks of fat in the meat will be more tender, and more tasty, and more satisfying. The grassfed roast cooked with a cap of its own magnificent fat will always come out much better that the totally trimmed roast. Our ancestors knew this, and it is a delicious and healthy tradition to follow!

Related Posts

The Joy of Fat, Why We Lost It, and How to Get It Back

Who Was Weston A. Price?

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

Grassfed Brisket Pot Roast with Traditional Flavors

By Stanley A. Fishman, author of Tender Grassfed Meat

Ingredients for a traditional grass fed brisket pot roast.

Ingredients for a traditional grass fed brisket pot roast.

Many people have asked me for a recipe for grassfed brisket pot roast. While Tender Grassfed Meat has a number of pot roast recipes, it does not have a recipe for brisket. I received so many requests that I decided to create one.

Brisket is one of the most beefy, flavorful cuts. It can also be one of the toughest. Grassfed brisket has a reputation for being particularly tough. But a grassfed brisket, treated with the magic of traditional pot roasting, can be so tender, with a rich texture that is a pleasure to chew, and a deep beefy flavor that almost no other cut of meat can match.

Pot roasts from brisket are a tradition in French, Italian, Belgian, German, Czech, Austrian, Jewish, Russian, Polish, and American cuisines—and in many others. Just about all of these traditions use onions to flavor the meat, and most of them also use carrots. Many other ingredients are used, and these can vary greatly.

Grassfed briskets usually have most or all the fat trimmed off. An untrimmed brisket will have a great deal of fat, actually too much for a pot roast, and the fat should be trimmed to no more than one quarter inch in thickness. Brisket has so much deep beefy flavor that this recipe will be great even if the brisket is completely trimmed of fat (but a light covering of fat is best).

The amount of time it takes to cook a grassfed brisket to be wonderfully tender can vary, but it usually takes a long time. The best way to tell if it is done is to stick a fork in it. If the fork goes in easily, with little resistance, it is ready. If not, it needs more cooking. Just about every cookbook will tell you never to pierce cooking meat, or you will “lose valuable juices.” This “rule” does not apply to grassfed meat. I stick forks and instant read thermometers into grassfed meat all the time, and the meat still comes out tender and delicious.

A cast iron casserole, or an enameled cast iron casserole, is the traditional pot for cooking this dish, and works beautifully. But any sturdy casserole that can be used for browning on the stove (with an ovenproof cover) will do, if you do not have the traditional casserole.

This recipe combines a number of traditional flavors for brisket pot roast. The use of powdered onion and garlic along with fresh onion and garlic creates a rare depth of flavor. Beef suet gives a wonderful flavor to the meat, but so does butter. Your choice. Either way, the gravy will be wonderful.

This is a great recipe for a cold day, which is why brisket pot roasts were popular winter fare all over Europe.

Traditional Grassfed Pot Roast

1 grassfed brisket pot roast, about 3 pounds

1 teaspoon freshly ground organic black pepper

1 teaspoon organic onion powder

1 teaspoon organic granulated garlic powder

1 teaspoon coarse unrefined sea salt (such as Celtic Sea Salt®), crushed,

4 tablespoons melted beef suet, (or 4 tablespoons pastured butter)

2 medium organic onions, peeled and sliced

1 large organic carrot, peeled and cut into small circles

1 cup homemade broth, preferably beef

4 sprigs organic flat leaf parsley, coarsely chopped

2 cloves organic garlic, peeled and coarsely chopped

2 teaspoons arrowroot, mixed with one tablespoon of water

  1. Take the meat out of the refrigerator at least 1 hour before cooking, so it will be at room temperature.
  2. Combine the pepper, onion powder, garlic powder, and salt, and mix well. Rub this mixture all over both sides of the meat. Preheat the oven to 250 degrees.
  3. Heat 2 tablespoons of the suet (or butter) over medium heat, in the bottom of the casserole. When the fat is hot and slightly smoking, add the roast to the pan. Brown for about 5 minutes, then turn the meat over and brown the other side, also for 5 minutes.
  4. Remove the meat from the pan. Add the remaining 2 tablespoons of suet (or butter). Add the onion and carrot and cook for 5 minutes, stirring from time to time. Remove the vegetables from the pan.
  5. Return the meat to the pan. Pour the vegetables over the meat, and use a spoon to push them so they surround the meat. Add the broth, parsley, and garlic, and bring the mixture to a slow simmer.
  6. Cover the pot and place in the oven. Cook until a fork goes easily into the meat, which could be anywhere from 2½ to 3½ hours.
  7. Remove the meat to a plate. Bring the gravy to a simmer over the stove. Stir the arrowroot and water together until they combine, then add the arrowroot mixture to the simmering gravy. Simmer briskly until the gravy thickens, stirring well. Once the gravy thickens, place it in a pitcher and serve the tender meat.

Serve and taste why brisket pot roasts have been cherished for so many years.

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

Weston A. Price Diet Means Strong Bones

By Stanley A. Fishman, author of Tender Grassfed Meat

Waste - Crutches on you
Creative Commons License photo credit: carlos.a.martinez

I had my second real food miracle several weeks ago.

It’s one thing to read about how the Weston A. Price way of eating strengthens the body, but it is really powerful to experience it.

A medical prediction proved worthless once again, and I had definite proof that my bones are stronger and healthier now than they were 37 years ago, when I was in college.

The difference? 37 years ago, I was eating the Standard American Diet, also known as “SAD”. In 2010, I had been eating a Weston A. Price type diet for several years.

The First Accident

Being young, oblivious, and foolish, I ran into a crosswalk. I was hit by a vehicle, sent flying through the air, and landed directly on my right knee. The knee was severely fractured. I could not stand up, and had to be taken to a hospital. After x-rays, the doctor told me the knee would always be seriously weakened. The knee would deteriorate over time, and there was no way to stop it. I would inevitably need to have the knee replaced at some future date.

Over the years, I was protective of the knee, which gradually became stiffer and achier as time went on. Sometime after I switched to a Weston A. Price diet, the stiffness and aches just diminished and eventually disappeared.

What I Ate

I followed the nutritional advice given by the Weston A. Price Foundation. I stopped eating processed foods. I stopped almost all sugar and sweeteners. I made a real effort to eat organic (or the equivalent) whenever possible. I had nutrient-dense food such as eggs, cheese, grassfed meat, bone broth, cream, mountains of butter, cod liver oil, wild seafood, and many kinds of animal fat.

The Second Accident

A few weeks ago, I was walking on a wet loading dock. All my attention was on the conversation I was having, and I slipped on something and toppled over the edge of the dock. I fell some distance and landed heavily, with all my weight, directly on the previously injured knee on a solid steel loading step. I landed with great force, greater than when my knee had been injured the first time. I felt a moment of panic, which immediately passed when I realized that something was missing—pain. There was no pain. I carefully got up, and felt a very slight stiffness and very minor pain. I looked at the knee. There was a very small bruise, about the size of a pea. That was it. No fracture. The skin was not even broken.

The pain soon disappeared, and I felt a very slight stiffness for the rest of the day.

When I woke up the next morning, the stiffness was gone, the bruise was gone, and there was no pain. It was like it never happened. I came to realize that the knee had actually healed, and that my bones were stronger than ever.

When It Come to Bone Health, SAD Is Bad

Many Americans suffer from thin and brittle bones, especially when they get older. It is very common for an older person to break a hip or some other bone from a relatively minor fall. Even younger people are breaking bones more often. Many people in their 40s or younger are having their joints surgically replaced. In fact, so many younger Americans are getting artificial knees and hips that special forms of these creations of metal and plastic have been designed for younger people.

The Standard American Diet, which its focus on processed factory food full of sugar and chemicals, does not supply our bodies with the nutrients needed to maintain strong bones.

No Artificial Joints for Me, Thanks to Dr. Weston A. Price

Most people in this nation believe that they will have a knee, or both knees “replaced” at some time in their lives. They also believe that they will need to have a hip, or both hips “replaced.” They think of these surgeries as an inevitable part of growing old.

Interestingly enough, the healthy peoples studied by Dr. Weston A. Price never had their joints replaced, and never needed to. Even in extreme old age, they remained mobile and active, keeping their own knees and hips.

No artificial creation of metal and plastic can possibly “replace” the joints we were born with. At best, these contraptions can be a very poor substitute for our own bones.

Replacing knees and hips is a very profitable business in the United States. Over a million knee replacement surgeries are done every year, and over a quarter of a million hip replacement surgeries. These surgeries often have complications, which are treated by more drugs, more surgeries, more hospitalization, which requires the spending of more and more money. Recently a major network reported that a particular artificial hip was being recalled. The problem was that unless it was installed with complete perfection, it was likely to release metal shavings into the bloodstream, which could cause dementia and/or heart failure. “Recall” means that everyone who has had a defective artificial hip installed must have it surgically removed and replaced.

I prefer to keep my own joints. Thanks to Dr. Weston A. Price and the Weston A. Price Foundation, I know how to do that just by eating a traditional, nutrient-dense diet. The Dietary Guidelines of the Weston A. Price Foundation are a great place to start.

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


Three Steps to Great Lamb

By Stanley A. Fishman, author of Tender Grassfed Meat
Backlight lamb
Creative Commons License photo credit: Tambako the Jaguar

Lamb is very unpopular in the United States. The amount of lamb in the diet of the average American has declined steadily. When I mention lamb to my friends, most of them say “I don’t like lamb.” This dislike is so intense that most of them will not even taste it.

Yet lamb is extremely popular and valued in all of Europe, the former Soviet Union, the Middle East, India, Australia, South America, New Zealand, in most of the world. In fact, lamb may be the world’s favorite meat.

Why do Americans dislike lamb? Why does the rest of the world love it?

The answer is very simple. The lamb eaten in the rest of the world is very different than most American lamb. There are two major differences.

First, American lamb is usually grain finished, while lamb in the rest of the world is almost always raised exclusively on grass.

Second, American lamb often comes from animals that are also used for wool. Lanolin, a substance present in sheep bred for wool, gives an unpleasant taste and smell to the meat. Most of the lamb eaten in the rest of the world comes from breeds raised for meat, not wool.

Grassfed Lamb Tastes Better

Most American lamb is “finished” on grain, in a feedlot. “Grain” usually means a mixture of GMO corn and GMO soy. This kind of grain is not the natural food of lambs, who are ruminants designed to live on living plants in the pasture, not processed grains.

Most of the lamb eaten in the rest of the world is fed grass only, and is never put in a feedlot.

This is a crucial difference, as the taste of lamb is heavily influenced by what the lamb is fed. For example, lambs raised in central Spain eat a number of herbs in the pasture, which gives a wonderful, herbaceous taste to their meat. Lamb raised in the salt marshes of Brittany is valued for its delicious meat, which has a slightly salty taste, from marsh plants growing in salty soil.

Lamb fed GMO corn and GMO soy has its taste altered by this feed. I consider the taste of such grain fed lamb to be awful.

Grassfed American lamb is wonderful. I have been fortunate enough to get lamb from the Willamette Valley in Oregon. This lamb has a wonderful flavor from some of the richest, greenest grasses in the world.

I have also been fortunate enough to get lamb raised on the Great Plains of the United States, which has grazed on the rich native grasses that were used to nourish the buffalo. The taste of this lamb is also wonderful, though it is different from the Oregon lamb, because the native forage is different.

Grain feeding, in my experience, makes the lamb greasy, with an unpleasant texture. One rancher described this lamb as tasting like “a great, greasy glob of nothing.”

Grassfed lamb has a sweet, clean taste, redolent with the flavor of the living herbs and grasses eaten on the pasture. It is never greasy, and the texture is firm and tender.

The first step to eating great lamb—buy grassfed and grass finished only.

Lamb Bred for Meat Tastes Better

Humankind has developed many breeds of sheep over thousands of years. Some breeds were developed for their wool, which was used to make clothing. The wool and meat of these breeds contain a great deal of lanolin, a substance that smells bad and gives an unpleasant flavor to meat.

Breeds that have been developed for meat do not have lanolin, and their meat smells good and lacks the unpleasant flavor given by lanolin. Many of these meat breeds have a wonderful flavor and texture of their own, when grassfed.

Unfortunately, much of the lamb sold in the United States comes from breeds that are used both for wool and meat. This is the cause of the unpleasant smell and taste so many Americans associate with lamb.

Meat breeds smell good and taste better.

The second step to eating great lamb is to only buy lamb that was bred for meat, not wool. US Wellness Meats is a great internet source of grassfed lamb from breeds that have been developed for meat.

Traditional Cooking Means Great Lamb

Once you have grassfed and grass finished lamb, from a meat breed, you have to know how to cook it. Lamb is not difficult to prepare, but it is easy to ruin. There are many traditional ways of cooking grassfed lamb that are both easy and wonderful, and a number of them are in my cookbook, Tender Grassfed Meat.

The third step to having great lamb is to learn traditional ways of cooking it.

The Three Steps to Great Lamb:

  1. Buy only grassfed and grass finished lamb.
  2. Buy only lamb that is raised for meat.
  3. Learn how to cook this wonderful meat.

This post is part of Real Food Wednesday Blog Carnival at Kelly the Kitchen Kop.

This post is part of Monday Mania Blog Carnival at the Healthy Home Economist.

Traditional Barbecue Methods Avoid Risk Factors

By Stanley A. Fishman, author of Tender Grassfed Meat

Barbecuing tender grassfed meat the traditional way with indirect heat.

Barbecuing tender grassfed meat with indirect heat.

Is barbecue safe? There are a number of studies that conclude that eating barbecued meat creates carcinogenic substances. However, traditional peoples barbecued constantly and were free of cancer.

The studies all focused on meat grilled with modern methods, using very high direct heat. The traditional methods are very different. No study bothered to contrast the difference between modern grilling methods and traditional methods. In fairness, the researchers were almost certainly unaware of the dramatic difference in cooking methods.

The researchers’ solution is to stop eating barbecue. My solution is to change your cooking method to avoid the risk factors by barbecuing the way our ancestors did.

What the Researchers Found

The studies showed that grilling meat over direct high heat can cause the formation of substances known as HCAs, which are considered carcinogenic when given in large amounts to laboratory animals. HCAs are formed when meat is cooked with very high direct heat, especially when flames hit the meat, and a hard crust is formed by the searing heat.

The studies also found that fat dripping from the meat directly on to the heat source would be changed by the heat, and driven back into the meat as a carcinogenic substance.

What is crucial to understand is that both of these substances are created by grilling the meat directly over a very hot heat source, whether gas or charcoal briquets.

As far as I could tell, the barbecued meat used in the studies was cooked with modern fuels like charcoal briquets and propane gas.

Some researchers found that marinating meat reduced the amount of HCAs by as much as 100%.

How Traditional Barbecue Methods Avoid the Risk Factors

Traditional peoples did not barbecue over direct high heat. In fact, they did not barbecue directly over any heat source, unless the meat was so high over a low fire that there was no chance of flames hitting the meat, and the meat only received low heat.

The prerequisite for forming the carcinogenic substances found by the studies—direct high heat—was never used.

Meat was always cooked in front of, never over, the fire. The fire was always allowed to burn down to smoldering coals—nobody cooked directly over leaping flames. This method did not create hard charred crusts or grill marks, but a delicious, tender, browned coating.

Cooking grassfed meats over direct high heat will make them tough and inedible. Grassfed meats can be very tender when grilled by moderate to low indirect heat, which is how our ancestors grilled them.

Traditional peoples almost always marinated their meat before barbecuing it.

Traditional Peoples Used Different Fuels

Almost all barbecue cooked in the United States today is made over a very hot fire fueled by propane gas or charcoal briquets. Traditional peoples never used these fuels.

Charcoal briquets were invented by Henry Ford as a way to make money from the scrap wood left over from making automobiles. These briquets included many other ingredients besides wood scraps, including anthracite coal, petrochemicals, and various binding materials and chemicals. They were never used by humans before the 20th century, as they were invented in the 20th century.

The use of propane gas as a barbecue fuel also began in the 20th century.

Traditional peoples used various natural substances as fuel. The most common was wood, which was always burned down to coals before the cooking began, or lump hardwood charcoal, which was made by partially burning wood in a way that caused it to form charcoal. The art of charcoal burning goes back thousands of years.

Traditional Barbecue Is Better for Grassfed Meat

Factory meat contains much more water than grassfed meat, which means that it can withstand direct high heat. The most common way to ruin grassfed meat is to cook it over direct high heat. Grassfed meat can be wonderfully tender when cooked with traditional methods.

We can avoid the risk factors identified by the studies by never using direct high heat when barbecuing. We can barbecue like our ancestors did, using lump hardwood charcoal or wood coals for fuel. We can marinate our meat like they did. Not only is this way of cooking safer, it is ideally suited to cooking tender grassfed meat.

This post is part of Real Food Wednesday at Kelly the Kitchen Kop.

This post is part of Fight Back Friday at Food Renegade.

This post is part of Monday Mania Blog Carnival at the Healthy Home Economist.

Beware the Changeling Business!

By Stanley A. Fishman, author of Tender Grassfed Meat
Faerie.  030/365
Creative Commons License photo credit: //amy//

European folklore tells of changelings. The fairies would steal a baby from its parents and place another baby in the crib. The new baby would look like the real baby, and would have the same name. But it was not the same baby. A similar thing can happen to a good business, without the knowledge of its customers.

Sometimes you find a wonderful business that has a great product. Usually, it is a family business that has developed something really wonderful. It may be a business that is absolutely honest and does wonderful work. It may sell a particularly high quality food, or cooking ingredient. These businesses often would hire local people who were skilled, friendly, and competent. Often these businesses would be experts in their field, providing the very best quality and service. Can you trust that these businesses will remain as good as they were? Can you trust the good name of the business? Unfortunately, you can’t. It is an ugly fact of modern life that even the finest small business can be bought by a big corporation or soulless venture capitalists. All too often these entities are interested only in squeezing as much money out of their customers as they can. Wonderful becomes bad; competence is outsourced and lost; the best ingredients become the cheapest; and all quality is lost. Yet, the name of the business is the same; no announcement is made about the change of ownership; or the change in policy; and the customers whose trust was earned by the original business are betrayed.

From Great Milk to Swill

It has happened several times that a small dairy has produced milk of wonderful quality. The cows were raised on pasture, grazing on green, living grass, with a tranquil, peaceful life. Their milk tasted wonderful, and made you feel good. The business grew and grew, as word of its quality spread. The superb quality of milk gave the dairy a large base of loyal customers who faithfully purchased their milk.

Sometime after this point, a big corporation or venture capitalists purchased the dairy. They do not notify the customers of the new ownership. They completely change the way the cows are raised and fed, so they can cut costs and make even more money. The cows are moved from pasture to confinement, and never taste green, living grass again. They are fed grains, garbage left over from making biofuels, and other products, and their milk is no longer wonderful. In fact, the milk bears no resemblance to the original product. The milk is highly processed to keep from spoiling, often by ultra-pasteurization.

Yet, the carton or bottle looks exactly the same, with no indication that anything has changed. The loyal customers of the original dairy still think they are getting milk from cows raised on green, living grass in a pasture. The good reputation of the original dairy is used to sell enormous amounts of milk that is not even close to the original, wonderful product.

From Grassfed Goodness to Grain Fed Greasiness

Once, there was a company that sold only grassfed lamb. This lamb was available at some markets, and was delicious, with a nice clean taste, and great mouthfeel. I always felt good when after eating that lamb. I used to buy that lamb regularly.

After a couple of years, I bought a leg of lamb from this company that looked different. The meat was a different color, and the meat felt squishy rather than firm. I cooked it in one of the usual ways. The meat left an unpleasant greasy taste in my mouth, and had a mushy texture. The flavor was different, with the unpleasant flavor that so many people associate with lamb. I felt bloated and uncomfortable after eating it. I was very surprised, because the lamb from that particular company had always been so good. I decided that the market must have made a mistake, and improperly labeled the lamb.

The next time I bought some lamb, I specifically asked the butcher to make sure it was from the right company. He did, and showed me the packaging it had come from. The lamb was the same color as the bad lamb I ate the last time. The butcher told me that color could vary for all sorts of reasons. I took the lamb home, cooked it, and experienced the same greasy taste, mushy texture, unpleasant flavor, and bloated feeling.

I talked to the meat department manager, and finally asked him what the lamb was fed. I learned that the company had been sold and the lamb was now finished on “grain.” No wonder I did not like the taste. I contacted the company, and found that the “grain” contained the standard mix of GMO corn and GMO soy. They said they changed the feed because customers liked the way it made the lamb taste, according to “Studies.”

The name of the company was the same, but the lamb had changed from tasting great to tasting terrible.

How to Ruin a Restaurant

Once, there was a small chain of wonderful restaurants that produced some of the most delicious barbecue you could eat. The meat was cooked over real hardwood coals, and basted with a mixture that was based on a traditional Native American recipe. This mixture was so secret that only a few people knew how to make it. The meat was very high quality, always tender, and always delicious, with a wonderful natural flavor.

Then, one day, the meat became tough, the flavor became mediocre, and 50 years of wonderful, quality barbecue disappeared. But the name of the restaurant remained the same. Something unique and wonderful had become boring and mediocre.

What happened? A large corporation had purchased the restaurant chain and cut costs so they could make more money.

Any Business Can Become a Changeling

The above three examples were taken from my life, and I could give you many more. The point is that you cannot expect that a business that has been good in the past will stay that way, because any business can become a changeling, even though it keeps the same name.

Sometimes a business can be improved by new owners, who care about quality. These are almost always a family, or a small group of friends. These are not the new owners I am talking about. I am talking about the corporations and venture capitalists who see every business as an asset to be squeezed in order to produce the largest possible amount of profit, and could care less about quality (except for its impact on profit).

The best solution I can think of is to regularly investigate a business before I use it, no matter how satisfied I have been in the past. If something appears to have changed, I will contact the business and make sure that it is still producing the same quality products that I have enjoyed in the past. When it comes to food, I will investigate if I notice any difference in taste, texture, or the way I feel after I eat it.

It is truly a shame that a business that was wonderful in the past can be changed completely by a new owner, while retaining the same name. We cannot trust the name of a business to mean quality. It is better to carefully watch what it actually does, rather than rely on its name.

This post is part of Monday Mania Blog Carnival at the Healthy Home Economist.

This post is part of Real Food Wednesday at Kelly the Kitchen Kop.

Let the Buffalo Roam

By Stanley A. Fishman, author of Tender Grassfed Meat

more grazing
Creative Commons License photo credit: brooklyn

Bison are huge, magnificent creatures designed to roam the vast plains of North America and to graze on the native grasses. The meat of these noble animals has a wonderful flavor of its own, with a sweet, clean taste found in no other meat. I have found that bison meat is one of the most energizing and rejuvenating foods I have ever eaten. Recently, I was horrified to learn that feedlots have been introduced for these magnificent animals who were never meant to be confined. But there is something we can do about this. We can decide not to eat any bison meat that is not 100% grassfed and grass finished.

Bison Thrive on Pasture

Once, more than 60 million bison roamed the Great Plains of the United States and Canada. These herds were so vast that it would take them days to pass a single spot. The bison ate the native plants and grasses, growing strong, healthy, and numerous. A number of Native American nations lived off the bison, getting almost all of their food from these healthy animals. The meat and fat of the bison provided high-quality food; the bones provided nourishing broth, and were often made into tools; the furry pelts were made into robes that kept the people warm during the winter, and provided blankets and clothing; the sinews were made into glue that was used to make bows and other tools; and the hides provided tough shields and footware, as well as clothing.

The Native Americans who lived off the bison were noted for their strength, endurance, physical beauty, intelligence, and robust good health. The bison thrived on the native grasses, and the people thrived off the bison. But this happy balance was doomed.

Industry Almost Exterminated the Bison

In the nineteenth century, the clothing industry discovered that bison hides were perfect for making warm clothing, coats, hats, and other apparel. They paid buffalo hunters to use specially designed buffalo rifles to slaughter the bison for their hides. This was made economically viable by the railroads, which could cheaply transport huge numbers of bison hides to the factories. The bison were slaughtered by the millions. The professional buffalo hunters would take only the hides and leave the rest of the bison to rot. This mass slaughter of the bison was encouraged by American industry and government, as a way to remove the main food source of the Native Americans living on the Great Plains, and as a way to clear the land of bison so it could be used for farming. By the end of the nineteenth century, there were less than 600 bison left alive in the United States. Over 60 million had been slaughtered for their hides.

The Bison Return

Fortunately, efforts were made to finally protect the bison. The numbers increased, and bison were once again used for food. Some creative ranchers learned how to raise bison and increase their numbers—and soon there was a substantial increase in the number of bison. These early ranchers raised and finished the bison on grass. They found that bison eating their native grasses were sturdy, healthy, hardy animals, who provided wonderful meat. However, raising bison naturally required a great deal of knowledge and effort on the part of the ranchers, and it took a while to raise a bison for meat. Some bison ranchers began to feed grains to their bison. These grain fed bison grew and matured faster. However, bison were never intended to eat grain, and the very composition of their meat and fat changed.

How to Make Bison Taste Like Beef

A bison industry was formed. The industry decided that they would sell more bison if they could make bison taste like beef. This led to the bizarre “beefalo” experiment where bison were interbred with cattle to provide hybrid animals who were turned into meat. Consumers had no interest in this product, and it was dropped. The industry then developed ways of feeding unnatural diets to bison that were designed to make them grow faster, and have their meat taste like beef. The industry succeeded completely. Grain finished bison tastes just like grain finished beef. The sweet, clean taste of grassfed bison was lost.

Comes the Feedlot

Feeding grain to bison was bad enough. Not only did it destroy the wonderful, natural taste of the bison, making the bison taste just like grain finished beef, but it changed the nutritional qualities of the meat. The situation became much worse when feedlots were introduced for bison. A protocol of 100 days of eating nothing but grains in a feedlot was introduced. For example, a recent study showed that grassfed bison had an omega-6 to omega-3 ratio of 4 to 1. Putting the bison on a grain diet in a feedlot resulted in an omega-6 to omega-3 ratio of 21 to 1. This huge imbalance of the omega-6 to omega-3 ratio does not occur in nature, and is not what our bodies were designed to eat.

Recently, the USDA Food Inspection Service announced that approximately 66,000 pounds of bison were recalled because of possible E. coli contamination.

Bison were meant to roam the prairie, eating the native grasses, not to be confined in a feedlot, eating food that is unnatural to them.

The Grassfed Solution

Fortunately, there are some bison ranchers who keep their animals on the pasture, and do not feed them grains, or send them to feedlots. These animals are healthy, and are free to roam the prairies as they were designed to do. Their meat is sweet, and nourishing, with the wonderful clean taste that is equaled by no other meat. This is the only kind of bison meat that I will eat. I encourage everybody to vote with their pocketbooks and buy only grassfed and grass finished bison. Let the buffalo roam.

My Sources Page has links to two wonderful bison ranches that sell only grassfed and grass finished bison.

This post is part of Real Food Wednesday Blog Carnival at Kelly the Kitchen Kop.

Next Page »