meat CSA recipe dilemma? i got you.
opening a surprise bag full of grass-fed meat is like christmas. christmas on january 4, to be exact.
in case you are at a loss for what to do with all that perfectly-omega-balanced goodness, here are my picks for the cuts we just got.**
beef cross-cut shanks
this cut has to be slowly braised, but it’ll be worth it.
- week night: slow-cooker beef shanks in red wine
- feast night: dominican sancocho
- cold-weather bonus dish: beef, vegetable and wild mushroom soup
flatiron + porterhouse steaks
you don’t need a recipe, just do this a few dozen times and you’ll have it down.
if you’re a rock star, cut the meat out of its packaging the day before, dry it, put it on a plate, and let it hang out uncovered in the fridge. optional. not everyone is a rock star, obv.
- before preparing: bring meat to room temperature. dry it and season it liberally with salt and pepper.
- get your sturdiest pan really fucking hot. cast iron, ideally.
- put the seasoned side down on the pan. season the naked side.
- wait til it releases enough to flip it.
- wait til that side releases.
- remove the steak to a plate, cover/tent it loosely, wait five minutes.
- rockstar step #2: make a pan sauce. skip it if you don’t know how.
- in five minutes, eat a med-rare steak.
do you need to stress out about how to prepare GRASS FED ground beef in some special way? no. you shouldn’t be cooking the shit out of regular ground beef, so don’t do that with this ground beef either. that’s it.
also, no stuffed pepper recipes. just, no.
- week night: pumpkin chili (one of the rare recipes from a paleo recipe site that i love and promote)
- feast night: bacon-filled meatloaf. this recipe contains some bread crumbs which i always leave out. do NOT leave out the bacon or the mystery dried fruit - it’s incredible.
- bonus feast night: wrap the bacon-filled meatloaf in bacon. i did.
a great, underrated and incredibly delicious meat.
- week night: lamb kofte with optional yogurt sauce. these are honestly delicious - i would never dilute them with pita, one of the most insipid and useless commercial bread products ever invented.
- feast night: lamb and vegetable lasagna (contains no noodles.)
center-cut pork chops
chops are one of my weeknight standbys.
everybody knows pork has been irrevocably ruined by the low-fat juggernaut and agribusiness (our wonderful farmers excepted); the technique below offers you the best chance at moist chops given the realities of the meat in your hands.
- week night: sauteed pork chops from bruce aidells/denis kelly’s the complete meat cookbook.
- learn to make a quick pan sauce from that recipe. really. it’s a technique you will use thousands of times in your life, and takes mere minutes.
boneless pork shoulder
y’all can already make a killer roast pork/pulled pork recipe, right? no? oh ok.
- week night: slow-cooker carnitas. i like to eat taco-type meat in crisp, tasteless leaves of iceberg lettuce. i do, actually. i’m not being sarcastic. taco meat is too delicious to not eat just because tortillas are not on the agenda. also, this recipe is not for the mexicophiles among us; however, not every taco can taste like it was wrung from the loins of actual mexicans in a dark corner of sunset park. some tacos need to come out of the crock pot with fewer than four total ingredients.
- friday night: chile-braised pork shoulder tacos. just leave out the beer; substitute water or weak chicken broth.
- feast night: porchetta-style roast pork. reduce the cooking time to account for our smaller cut. get a meat thermometer if you don’t have one.
hot italian sausages
the best use for these suckers, in my opinion, is in a big fat frittata. the recipe calls for “mild” sausage, but i always use hot. yes, there is cheese.
that’s it! happy cooking! hit me in the comments if you want to talk about any of these recipes.
**these recipes have been curated carefully. they were vetted for paleo suitability, obviously, plus for seasonality and likelihood of success. *your* success. i’ve either cooked them myself, or firmly believe anyone short of a total idiot could make them with a reasonable chance of producing highly edible food. just a note, don’t start substituting things if you’re making a recipe for the first time. that’s just asking for trouble. unless we’re talking about canola and other vegetable oils, which should always be ruthlessly replaced with a better fat (olive oil, clarified butter, animal fat, depending on the situation. if you need help, for god’s sake ask.)
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