Ok, not really but sort of…I bought a “1/4 share” of a cow, who is grass-fed and pastured for it’s whole life until it is butchered. My cow…or 1/4 cow, lives in San Juan Bautista, CA, which is about 60 miles away from where I live. I was able to see, through videos and photos, the grassland and pastures that my cow grazed on before it was butchered.
So now you know, the cow I bought is actually dead. And, I am eating it’s meat, using it’s bones for broth and feeding my dog it’s organs.
If this is grossing you out and you eat meat, tsk, tsk. You should know that a hamburger used to be a cow – either a happy cow (like mine) or a sad cow, that lived it’s whole life in a factory-farmed feedlot.
Do you want to know something ironic? (or possibly, not ironic – I lost the ability to define irony after that Alanis Morissette’s song. I digress) I was a vegetarian for 15 years. A strict vegetarian. A label reading vegetarian. Why? I’d decided that I liked animals more than their flesh. But, sh#t happens, you are anemic, you eat only carbohydrates, you gain weight and you are unhappy. So, I started eating meat again but really slowly and carefully. I wasn’t a fan of the product and I disliked the industry immensely.
I had to make a choice – eat meat but only if it is good meat from happy animals. Vegetarians and vegans may believe that a happy animal is a live animal, not a dead, butchered one and I don’t disagree. There are shades of grey. But, my particular body does disagree with a non-meat diet.
So, I had to buy a cow.
I am single and have a dog – who, luckily, also eats meat. So, a 1/4 cow amounted to approximately 100 lbs of meat for one year. I had the meat split up into 4 parcels – so, every few months, I’d pick up about 25 lbs of meat, bones and organs. I got every single, possible cut of the cow – things I’d never heard of like the “petite tender” which is a filet of the shoulder and “top sirloin.” I learned the difference between a pot roast and a chuck roast. And, I made the best short ribs this side of…Nevada or Arizona. Ok – so CA really isn’t BBQ country but whatever, they tasted great.
Grass fed and pastured beef, locally grown, sold to me directly by the rancher is the only way I will ever by beef again. Now, if I could buy a pig, a few turkeys and a bunch of chickens…I’d be set:)
ps: If you want to follow more stories like this, check out http://www.foodrenegade.com/fight-back-friday-march-22nd/