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Stokes Family Farm
Frequently-Asked Questions
Q: What does grass-fed beef mean?
A: Grass-fed means our cattle live on and eat grasses their entire lives. Cattle evolved eating grass; feeding them other foods creates problems for their health and yours.
 
Grass-fed cattle yield very healthy and delicious beef that is low in saturated fat and cholesterol. It is also high in vitamin E, beta-carotene and other anti-oxidants. Most importantly, it has a healthy ratio of omega 3s to 6s. Corn or grain-fed beef has an unhealthy ratio of these essential fatty acids. In these respects, it is precisely the opposite of conventional, corn-fed beef.
 
Q: How does a share of beef come? Do I have to cut it up myself?
A. Your beef will be cut, wrapped and frozen when you pick it up from the slaughter house. The average share contains the following:
  • 30 to 40% ground beef;
  • A variety of roasts averaging 3 lbs each;
  • of the New York strips from the cow;
  • of the rib steaks cut from the cow: (sirloin, round steak, cube steak, stew meat;)
  • of the filets from the cow.
Q: Can I choose how I want my meat cut?
A: Most of our cattle are split between 4 families. The butcher has to cut everything from a single cow the same way. Therefore you can only make cutting choices if you are buying the entire animal. We know our beef and select the best thickness and cut for the most flavorful and juicy results.
 
 
Q: Why do my packages say, “Not For Sale”?
A: In order to transport our cattle the least possible distance, we use the only butcher in the local area. He runs a custom slaughter facility. Essentially, you are buying a share of a live animal we take to the slaughterhouse for you. Your beef is intended for home use rather than retail sale.
 
Q: Does grass-fed beef taste like corn-fed beef?
A: Yes, only more so. Grass-fed beef is richer, with firmer texture than corn-fed beef. The muscles are generally better developed, and the meat is lower in fat as well as higher in other nutrients. Many people love the intense beefiness of it.
 
Q: Do I cook grass-fed beef like I do corn fed beef?
A: No! Go back to the drawing board and start your recipes over. This is the most difficult concept to convey to the first-time customer. Grass-fed beef must be prepared like bison, venison or other very lean meat. In broadest terms, grass-fed beef should either cook very slowly at a very low temperature, or very quickly at an ultra-high temperature.

Consider traditional cooking methods and ethnic cuisines. Pot roast is a classic slow and low treatment. 200 degrees for 4 hours is perfect. At the opposite end of the spectrum, cut the meat thinly and cook on a sizzling iron skillet or grill until it is barely done. This cooking technique exemplifies Chinese pepper steak, Mexican fajitas, and Cuban steak. There is no limit to the ways you can slice, season and sizzle with these methods.

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Q: How long can I keep my grass-fed beef in the freezer?
A: If your freezer is set close to 0 degrees, conventional beef should be used within 6 months. The high fat content goes rancid quickly. I routinely use our grass-beef, after two years in my freezer, as samples for customers. They are usually shocked that it tastes so good.
 
If ever your meat does not turn out the way you expect, contact Anthony and let him know the cut you prepared and your cooking method. He has decades of cooking experience and can suggest helpful techniques.
Recipes
Check out Anthony's delicious grass-fed beef recipes!

 

Quick Cooking Tip
When quick-cooking grass-fed beef, like on a sizzling hot grill, use a thermometer and remove your meat from the grill 5 degrees cooler than you normally would. Let the meat rest at least 5 minutes before serving. 15 minutes is better for larger roasts.
Cook steaks very briefly on a searing hot grill or cast iron skillet to maintain the juicy tenderness of this ultra-lean meal. I actually re-cut my steaks to about inch to help them cook faster. The faster they cook, the juicier they are.

 

Slow Cooking Tip
At the other end of the spectrum, grass-fed beef reaches its perfection when slow-cooked for long periods of time at a low temperature. Slow- cookers are great. I cook chuck roasts for 4 hours at 200 degrees in the oven with wine, balsamic vinegar, onions, garlic, etc. A crock-pot is another excellent option.

 

Calf looking at camera

 

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