grass fed beef

Giving Thanks on the Farm: An Update From Peterson Limousin Farms

This has been an unbelievable autumn. The weather has been gorgeous and it’s made for a warm invitation to finish summer projects before winter sets in.


This year’s crops yielded really well. Our hay and corn silage supplies for winter are some of the best in recent memory. The timely rainfall this summer really played a critical role in keeping plants nourished and productive. Although summer started rather cool, July and August provided the necessary heat units to spur plant growth. Our cows came off of grass this fall looking plump and content. They weaned off strong, healthy calves that are really starting to settle in and grow well. 


Last week we pregnancy-checked our cowherd and saw good results. Pregnancy-checking is critical to the survival of a cattle operation. Open (non-pregnant) cows lose money. They consume feed and have nothing to show for it.


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Welcome the Holiday Season with Christmas Empanadas

This is the time of year that finds most people elbow-deep in sugar, butter, vanilla and sprinkles, baking sheet after sheet of Christmas cookies. Me? Not so much. Not that anything would surprise you at this point, but I find myself elbow-deep in something of a more savory nature. Olives, cumin, egg, and ... you guessed it: beef. This is the time of year I make empanadas. Christmas empanadas. OK, maybe it doesn’t have quite the alliterative ring to it that Christmas cookies does, but I don’t think anyone is in a position to quibble with a Christmas empanada.

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Secrets and Confessions of an Argentine Carnivore

For someone with a bacon mustache in her bio picture, I realize I have written precious little about meat here in these Simple, Good, and Tasty pages. My swooning and waxing poetic about squash, asparagus, garlic scapes, rhubarb, blueberries, apples and tomatoes (oh, sweet tomatoes) may lead you to believe that I am a feeble carnivore indeed. It just goes to show how eating with the seasons, along with myriad benefits lauded every day here at Simple, Good, and Tasty, has the added perk of increasing one's consumption of fruits and vegetables. To pay attention to what is most ripe and fresh at the farmers market inevitably gets my wheels turning and inspires me to figure out ways to cook and eat those beautiful foods.

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Why You Should Eat Local Food (Even if You Don’t Care About Food Miles)

 A little over a month ago, an op-ed in the New York Times got the online locavore community all worked up. Stephen Budiansky’s “Math Lessons for Locavores” contended that many of the commonly-spouted arguments for eating local are misleading or downright bogus.

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What is Humane Food?

A few weeks ago, I got a text from my brother-in-law Jeff. He'd just discovered a restaurant he thought I'd love, and the message said, "it was awesome. Put it on your highly recommended list." Jeff has great taste -- I can't think of a time he's steered me wrong -- and I take his recommendations seriously. But Jeff doesn't get all hung up on how his food is sourced the way I do, and I didn't assume that his "it was awesome" meant that I'd feel good about it. I needed to ask.

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Grass Fed Cattle Company Ruminates on a Way to Eat Better Meat

Abby Andrusko, co-founder of The Grass Fed Cattle Co. in Edina, MN, is telling me the story of when she and her husband (and business partner) Marcus decided to give up industrially produced meat for good. "We were with a group in the boundary waters [Marcus and Abby also run a mission-driven company called Boundary Waters Experience], and the food we'd brought [from a major, national food discounter] was tasteless and fatty - definitely not healthy, and we didn't feel good about it. Marcus and I decided then and there that we were done with that kind of meat." On July 4, 2008, the couple decided to punish their families and friends one last time, cooking and eating every last bit of "the bad stuff" in a tribute to our country that was every bit as American as apple pie and fireworks. All the meat was eaten, and - fortunately - nobody got sick. An idea was born.

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Recipes Inspired by "The Compassionate Carnivore"

This month's book club selection, The Compassionate Carnivore, by Catherine Friend, chronicles the author's journey to better understand and appreciate the face on her plate. Here's a short excerpt from Indie Bound, describing the book:

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Grass-Fed: Something to Chew On

Conscientious omnivores of the Michael Pollan variety champion grass-fed beef. It is claimed to be better for the cattle themselves than grain-finishing, since they eat what their rumens are evolved to digest (grass and legumes) instead of what fattens them quickest. Plus, they get to graze open pasture instead of being confined to a feedlot for the final four to six months of their lives. Grass-fed enthusiasts also claim it’s better for people because grass-fed meat is leaner and has a higher proportion of omega-3 fats than grain-finished meat. Some even argue that it’s better for the environment, since you don’t have huge piles of feedlot manure to manage; the cattle deposit their manure on grass, as they naturally would, and it ultimately nourishes the soil.

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Thousand Hills, Part 2: Grass Fed Beef and What it Means to Eat Local

Yesterday's post took a look at Thousand Hills Cattle Company and the advantages of grass fed beef.

There are purists who will argue that you can’t have pastured, grass-fed cattle in Minnesota all year round. These people have a point. Snow covers much of the ground in Minnesota for what seems like 6 - 8 months of the year. Thousand Hills Cattle Company, the largest producer of grass fed beef in the Midwest, deals with this harsh reality via a system of enormous hay bails, rolled up in the warmer months and rolled out across the snow during the winter.

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Thousand Hills Cattle Company Leads the Way to Grass Fed Beef

Thousand Hills Cattle Company, a leading producer of grass fed beef in the Midwest, has its work cut out for it.

First of all, there’s the cost of their product. Although their cattle are relatively inexpensive to raise, according to founder Todd Churchill (they just eat grass, right?), the cost of transporting, processing, packaging, and shipping 24 grass-fed cattle each week is enormous - there’s just not much economy of scale. By the time it gets to the grocery store or co-op, Thousand Hills beef costs more than its corn fed (non-organic) counterparts, nearly every time.

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