On Buying Meat for Food

 As opposed to for art & entertainment.

This was originally an introduction to another post I’m writing called “The Definitive Photographic Guide to Making Souse“. But it got a little big and I want to be able to share this with those whose sensibilities are too delicate to enjoy the Souse post. Or as one great blogger (I will credit as soon as I remember) wrote: “Those who can not handle that strange alchemy by which animals become food.”

Do we need meat? I think so. I think you require animal meat and fats. Very little, though.  I subscribe to the gram of protein per kilogram of body weight theory, and subtract out the protein you get from plants. To me, the ideal diet would be to eat an allotment of meat as described above with all of the fat that comes with it, being 100 calories or 1000 calories of fat. There is no reason to eschew fatty meats for lean (especially if the lean has added nitrites & nitrates).  Then the balance of your caloric need should be nutrient-dense vegetables. Go easy on the fruit, especially when not in season and go easy on the root vegetables that are just under-ground carbohydrate bombs. But I’ve been known to hurt myself on roasted beets.  I try to eat more organ meats and offal than skeletal meat. I’ll get into the science and nutrition of all this in other posts.

Not that I stick to that eating plan worth a damn. But that is my goal. Only my social life throws me off.

“Meatless Monday” is about the stupidest thing I’ve ever seen.  What we need is “Carbless Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays” and 24 hour fasts 2-4 times a month before our pancreases go down like the runner at Marathon, as they have been left and right. Carbon tax on meat?  Well, the Gub’mint will never pass up an opportunity to regulate, but I’m more concerned about the fertilizers used in those Government-subsidized monocrop fields that feed those CAFOs washing down into the Gulf of Mexico.  I don’t even let myself think about the Government-approved meat now coming from China or what is really in those breaded and boxed frozen packages.  I’ve never eaten those as an adult.

 I no longer have to wander into the grocery and see that acre of red meat and just wonder what conditions produced it or what strange compounds they carry. I am fortunate to live moments way from New Creation Farm, a wonderful family that provides Scottish Highland Cattle, Free-range pigs, chicken and eggs.  Please read the article written about them in Edible Cleveland.

At New Creation Farm, I can meet & pet my food before I eat it, see where they live and ask Scott or Kristen all the questions I like about feed & preventative medicine.

Is it “expensive”?  Yes and no. You may pay more than you are used to paying, but what is the real cost of food?

Since you require so very little protein-you can take the time to source “expensive” ethically produced and chemically unmolested meats. In truth, you probably need a whole lot less than you’ve been buying. “Value prices” in meat are subsidized by animal misery, counterproductive medication and questionable shipping and storage practices, not to mention use of abused illegal immigrants that you subsidize 100 different ways through taxes.  Choose respectfully. Not that I’m proselytizing.

When we are so disconnected from our food- when we pay people to do our dirty work, this ultimately fosters more and worse animal abuse.  This is also why I think those of us who can hunt and fish really should. When you watch that thing die, you may develop a sense of what it really means to take a life to continue yours.  The deli doesn’t inspire much introspection toward that end.  I have a big post brewing on that topic, but that will be for  another day.

Here are some pictures from New Creation’s open house. If you live within 90 minutes of something like this, it may be worth considering making infrequent, large meat purchases instead of traipsing through the  grocery store and seeing what hits your whim.

Oh, Mommy! Can I eat it NOW??”

I bet know who’s getting a meat locker for Christmas.

Not Exactly a CAFO.

Scott entertains questions during the Open House.

“Oh, Yeah- MOO and stuff!”

“Hi, I’m Checkers. I’m a dog! I watch the chickens. Pleased to meet you. Don’t come come over the fence or I’ll have to kill ya. Thanks, now!”

And now! What to do with it once you get it home:

The Definitive Photographic Guide to Making Souse“-NOT for the faint of heart.

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