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Irish Beef and Potatoes

Posted Mar 24 2011 2:26pm
*Make sure to enter my Love Grown Foods granola giveaway ! Leave a comment until Saturday at midnight for your chance at Oats + Love!*

Oh, how the weather can change in 12 hours. When I arrived home after work yesterday, I discovered that our backyard tree had bloomed! It has been in the 70’s for almost four straight days, so this was a really exciting development.

So pretty! 

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And today? Today it is in the mid-30’s with snow flurry sightings and coldness seeping into my formerly open windows.


Sadface.

I made a trip to Local Harvest Grocery yesterday, a St. Louis store that carries almost solely local food and drink. It’s awesome, no two-ways about it. I picked up local beef, bacon, and chives.

Sidenote: I really need to start my own herb garden!

This Saturday is the Schlafly/Maplewood Winter Farmer’s Market , where I’m hoping to get eggs, spinach, green onion, black beans, bread, pork, and maybe more beef. I’ll have to get there early! We’ve had mild temps the past few weeks (until today), so I’m hoping produce will be somewhat plentiful. Can’t wait for the real Spring to shine through!

I used the Missouri grass-fed beef to make this Irish dinner. It was basic, easy, and filling. I got the idea from the Whole Foods Whole Deal magazine , from a chart that listed four easy, money-saving grass-fed beef dinners. My ingredients included:

8 small Russet potatoes
1 lb grass-fed, local beef
1 cup chopped organic onion
½ cup beer (Schlafly APA for us; lager or ale recommended)
2 cups thinly sliced organic cabbage
¼ - ½ cup cheddar
Fresh chives


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Bake your potatoes (these took about an hour and 15 minutes, so make sure you start them early!). Chop your veggies while they're baking, of course. 
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In the last 15 minutes, brown your beef and onion until most of the liquid is gone, then add beer and let simmer, unless liquid is gone again. Add cabbage and cook 2-3 minutes, just until crisp-tender.
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I made a bleu cheese and mandarin salad on the side!

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Spoon over baked potatoes and top with cheese and any other baked potato toppings you might enjoy.
My only complaint is that I should have spiced the beef more. It was fairly bland. I wasn’t sure what spices would go with an Irish dish, so I just didn’t!

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Did you know that grass-fed beef often cooks faster and contains less fat than corn-fed beef?

Here’s a quote from an NPR article about grass-fed vs. corn-fed beef:

“A  recent analysis from the Union of Concerned Scientists  found that grass-fed steak has about twice as many omega-3s as a typical grain-fed steak (another study published in March in Nutrition Journal  backed up those numbers)...and since grass-fed cattle are typically leaner, almost all cuts of grass-fed beef have less total fat than beef from corn-raised cattle.” Interesting, eh? Grass-fed beef can taste “chewier” than the traditional beef from the grocery store, but overall is, in my opinion, far worth the switch. Around here, a pound goes for around $5.99. Woo, almost Friday! Question: Is grass-fed beef readily available near you? How much does it cost? Do you think it’s worth the extra cost/search to find it? Unfortunately, there is no government regulation regarding “grass-fed” unless the meat is certified organic, so it’s important to do your homework, know where the beef comes from, and talk to the farmers!
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