Imagine enjoying delicious, nutritious, locally raised, and ethically produced meat whenever you wanted, without the hassle of a trip to the farmers market or the hefty price tag at a high-end grocery store.
That's what buying meat in bulk is all about. Ordering beef, pork, lamb, chicken, and other meats by the quarter, half, or whole animal is an excellent way to save time and money. It also better connects you to your food, the people who produce it, and a more traditional and holistic way of eating. But how do you even buy an entire cow or half a hog? What exactly do you get? Where do you put it all?
Based on years of research and the firsthand experience of a health editor who's been eating this way since 2011, There's a Cow in My Freezer is an easy-to-follow, step-by-step guide that walks readers through the entire process of buying meat in bulk. You'll discover:
- why local grass-fed and pasture-raised meat is better for you, the animals, the community, and the environment, and how buying meat in bulk can simplify your life
- how to choose what to buy based on your household's budget, space, and eating preferences
- how to find local farmers and pick the one that's the best fit based on the things that matter most to you
- how to choose a freezer, plus creative options if you're short on space
- how the buying process works, including deposits, cut instructions, and replenishing your freezer year after year
- how to keep your freezer organized and keep yourself on track with a freezer inventory and weekly meal plan
- how to take the guesswork out of cooking grass-fed meat, and tips for keeping things fun and stress-free in the kitchen
...plus much, much more.
If you've ever been curious about buying meat in bulk but didn't know where to start, or felt overwhelmed or intimidated by the idea of whole-animal eating, then this book is for you!
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About the Author
Table of Contents
Chapter 1: Why Buy Local, Pasture-Raised Meat?
What Type of Meat Should You Be Eating?
A Final Caveat
Chapter 2: Why Buy Meat in Bulk?
Which Meats Can You Buy in Bulk?
What Does It Mean to Buy Meat in Bulk?
Advantages of Buying Meat in Bulk
Addressing Potential Concerns About Buying Meat in Bulk
Chapter 3: Four Things to Consider
Consideration 1: Quantity - "How Much Meat Should We Buy?"
Consideration 2: Variety - "What Types of Meat Should We Buy?"
Consideration 3: Space - "How Much Room Do We Have?"
Consideration 4: Budget - "How Much Can We Afford?"
Chapter 4: Choosing a Freezer
Decision 1: Chest vs. Upright Freezer
Decision 2: Manual vs. Automatic Defrost
Decision 3: Size
What About the Brand?
Where and When to Buy
Achieving Maximum Efficiency
What If Something Goes Wrong?
Chapter 5: Selecting a Farmer
Where to Look
Conducting a Farm Visit
What About Finding Your Own Butcher?
Chapter 6: Paying for and Picking Up Your Meat
Step 1: Putting Down a Deposit
Step 2: Paying the Balance and Providing Cut Instructions
Step 3: Getting Your Meat Home
Making Additional Purchases
Chapter 7: Freezer Organization and the Freezer Inventory
Organizing Your Freezer
Creating and Maintaining a Freezer Inventory
Chapter 8: Meal Planning, Pacing, and Preparation
Cooking Grass-Fed and Pasture-Raised Meat
Appendix A: Quick Guide to the Most Common Grass-Fed and Pasture-Raised Animals
Primals, Their Derivative Cuts, and Cut Instructions
A Note on Seasonality
Appendix B: Cooking Grass-Fed and Pasture-Raised Meat
Tough vs. Tender, Moist vs. Dry Heat
Appendix C: Templates
Farmer Comparison Chart
Basic Freezer Inventory
Weekly Meal Plan
Animal Welfare Certifications
Preparing and Cooking Grass-Fed and Pasture-Raised Meat
About the Author