That, my friends, is about 30 pounds of local, grass-fed, sustainable, rare-breed beef! Which now resides in my freezer. Yippee!!
I finally found a local farmer, and it ended up being someone I went to university with. Cue: "It's a Small World"....
Larry and Alison raise the Kerry breed of cattle. In their words:
"While maintaining a nucleus of pure-bred Kerry, we are also developing a premium product by bringing together best characteristics of small beef animals such as the Hereford, with the pasture efficiency of the Kerry.
The Kerry Cow is a heritage breed from Ireland kept for both beef and dairy purposes. They are a smaller breed, typically horned and solid black in color (solid red sometimes shows). They are hardy and long lived.
Originally developed in harsh conditions, we find the Kerry thrive on pasture and hay.
Rare Breeds Canada classify the Kerry as ‘Critical’ (less than 25 annual registrations of breeding females). With only a few other breeders in Canada, we are attempting to increase the numbers of Kerry in Canada. Starting out with 4 pure-bred Kerry cows in 2004, we have raised our pure-bred herd to over 20."
Their farm is about 60 km away, so well within my "100 miles". It's far enough away that I don't want to be driving out there every week, but a few times a year is no big deal, especially since it also includes a visit! Hopefully, next time the weather will be a bit better and I can get a tour of the farm. And take pictures! And write another post about the cattle and farm.
You can find out more about their farm at their website: www.rosedeneacres.ca
I bought what they call a "box o'beef". It consisted of 3 roasts (~10 pounds total), 10 steaks (~7 pounds total), 3 packs of ribs (~2 pounds) and about 12 pounds of ground beef. The price, like most local, sustainable meat, is about twice what you'd pay for grocery store beef, but it's equivalent to what a local store charges for grass-fed beef.
Oh well - I love the fact that I can buy sustainable beef, that the money goes directly to the farmer, and who is also an old friend! Of course, the drawbacks are that I didn't get to pick the cuts (I'd have loved to have gotten some stewing beef, and less ground), and that I have to store that much beef in the freezer. And the price too - it would have been cheaper to buy a larger amount, but as much as I love beef, I can't justify buying a quarter, unless I was splitting it with someone. I'll see how long this lasts, and adjust accordingly for next year.
Oh, and the bonus? It's paper-wrapped!
I'll write more when I cook with the beef - I can't wait to taste it. Now, to find some good recipes...
Full disclosure: I received nothing for writing this review; Larry and Alison didn't even know I had a blog or was writing this until after I bought the beef. I did ask for, and receive, their permission to use their names and link to their website, but my review is entirely my own. Mind you, Larry did throw in a pack of pepperettes, but that was because we're friends, not to influence this article. They are really good pepperettes, by the way. Nom nom nom....