Best Steak Ever

We want you to enjoy the most flavorful, tender, juicy steak ever…. So here is the method, and seasonings we use for our “best steak ever”. Feel free to alter the seasonings to your own preference, but keep in mind the methods presented here will benefit the tenderness and flavor no matter what cut or seasoning.

1. Start ahead of time!
Mark tells all of our beef purchasers to plan ahead, and he doesn’t mean only one day ahead either! Get your meat out of the freezer and let it thaw in the refrigerator for four or five days. This provides time for the meat to thaw and tenderize.

2. Bring them up to temperature.
Start with the steaks. Take them out of the refrigerator, season them, and let them marinate on the counter for 15-50 min. (If you wish to marinate them longer, we recommend doing so in the refrigerator.) While the steaks are soaking in that flavor, heat up your grill. Get it plenty hot. Hot enough to sear in the juices when the steaks are put on the grill. If your steaks are thick, turn the heat down immediately after putting the steaks on the grill to cook them through. But before you put those steaks on…

3. Pat them dry.
Dry steaks sear so much better than wet ones! If you feel you have rubbed off too much of your seasoning - you can always add more.

4. Cover the grill!
Put a lid on the grill immediately after putting your steaks on it. This helps the steaks cook more evenly. After 5 min. gently turn the steaks to the other side. Avoid moving them once you have turned them. No matter the utensil you use, pushing the meat around releases the juices, instead of keeping them in the meat - so handle the meat as little as possible. Remember to put the lid back on the grill!

5. Don’t overcook your meat.
In general, grass-fed beef requires 30% less cooking time than grain-fed. On some grills, maintaining an even temperature throughout the cooking time can be a challenge - so instead of a blanket cooking time statement, try the finger test method for checking the doneness of your meat. - see explanation here - Also remember that your meat will continue to cook for a short period of time after being removed from the grill… so remove it slightly before it is at your desired state of “done”.

 Kirkland brand Sweet Mesquite Seasoning

Kirkland brand Sweet Mesquite Seasoning

Our favorite seasonings:
Sweet Mesquite Seasoning. Not so much as to cover the meat - but enough that you recognize it is on there.
Granulated garlic. You can use fresh garlic if you prefer - just rub it into the raw meat with the back of a spoon before dusting with the other flavorings.
Salt and Pepper. While the amount of salt and pepper tends to be a personal preference, in general, the meat will taste more evenly salted if the salt is allowed to marinate on the meat for at least 30 min. before cooking.
A tsp. or so of Worcestershire sauce (per steak). It is our observation that this liquid seems to help the meat absorb more of the other seasonings.
Sometimes we add a tsp. or so of Liquid Smoke. Primarily we use this during the colder months when we grill indoors with our electric grill.

Easy Lasagna

Here’s a way to impress your visiting friends and family with a delicious Italian dinner, while still having time to visit with them. This easy lasagna can be assembled and in the oven before your guests arrive. The recipe is forgiving and flexible - as long as you remember to seal the dish VERY WELL before cooking. In my experience, this lasagna freezes well, so try doubling the recipe, and pull a ready-made meal out of the freezer for another dinner. (Just get it out significantly ahead of time to thaw.)

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INGREDIENTS:

1-2 lbs. lean ground beef
2-3 Tbls. olive oil

SEASONING:
1/4 cup dried minced onion
1 tsp. beef flavoring (or 1 bouillon cube)
1/4 tsp. pepper
1 1/2 Tbsp. Italion Seasoning
1/2 tsp. garlic salt
1/2 tsp. seasoning salt
1 Tbsp. Worchester sauce (optional but delicious)
28 ounce can diced/stewed tomato
10 3/4 oz. tomato sauce

1 pint cottage or ricotta cheese (can use more if desired)
1 beaten egg

Lasagna Noodles - not precooked!
1 box or less (I have made this recipe using rice noodles and it worked equally well.)
1 lb. (or more) grated mozzarella, monterey jack or cheddar cheese
Optional: Olives, Basil, spinach

Non-stick spray
9” x 13” cassarole dish

DIRECTIONS:
Preheat oven to 375°
Fry ground beef with 2-3 Tbls. olive oil.
Add in the onion while cooking the beef.
As the beef is done, stir in the remaining seasonings, and then the tomatos.
Simmer for 2-5 min. while preparing the cottage cheese mixture.

In a separate container, beat the egg, then mix in the cottage or ricotta cheese. (I love cottage cheese in Lasagna, but some people don’t. I often use almost double the amount of cottage cheese that this recipe calls for - but don’t tell my husband!!! ;-)

Use a deep 9” x 13” cassarole dish, or one with a lid so that the foil doesn’t stick to the cheese.
Spray dish with non-stick spray for easier clean up.

ASSEMBLY:
Start with a thin layer of your simmered meat sauce and add in 1/4 cup of water.
Next add a layer of uncooked lasagna noodles.
Add another layer of meat sauce.
Next spread a portion of your cottage cheese mixture over the meat sauce.
Add a layer of cheese (I sometimes omit the cheese in the center of the lasagna)
Repeat the noodle, meat sauce and cottage cheese layers until your dish is filled to slightly below the lip. Overflowing lasagna is not fun to clean out of the oven!
If you like olives in your lasagna - you can add them in the meat sauce, or on top before the cheese.
Top with a thicker layer of shredded cheese.

 Layer your lasagna - additional water on the bottom layer only!

Layer your lasagna - additional water on the bottom layer only!

 Pinch the edges of the foil covering to provide a tight seal.

Pinch the edges of the foil covering to provide a tight seal.

Cover WELL with foil or glass lid. If using foil, I suggested running your fingers all the way along the edge of your dish several times “crimping” the edges so that you “seal in” the moisture.

Sometimes I substitute a layer of spinach and basil in place of one noodle layer - Yummy!

COOK:
Bake 1 hr. at 375°

 Enjoy!

Enjoy!

If you wish to put this in the freezer - do so after cooking it, and keep in mind that the result is a dense dish, so it needs to come out of the oven in time to thaw before being re-warmed as a whole in the oven or “by the serving” in the microwave.

Feeding the Teams

Amy has been busy lately… making lasagna! First she fed Kyla’s cross country team, and the next week the Wallowa High School Football team. During the process, she cemented the idea that good neighbors are invaluable! With too many lasagnas to fit in Amy’s oven, neighbor, Barbara Hilde (age 90) put a couple in her oven as well. The Teams were thrilled… sorry, there is none left.

Nobody turned down mountain beef lasagna!

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Four Lasagnas assembled in under an hour! Amy can do that. Lasagna Recipe coming soon! Join our Mailing list by filling out the form on the right to be notified when we post new recipes and articles.

 Cross country team dinner with Mountain Beef lasagna! Kyla seated second on right.

Cross country team dinner with Mountain Beef lasagna! Kyla seated second on right.

 Wallowa High School football team, Huskers prayer after game tradition.

Wallowa High School football team, Huskers prayer after game tradition.

 Wallowa football seniors - Gus with no shirt.

Wallowa football seniors - Gus with no shirt.

 Gus senior game, last home football game.

Gus senior game, last home football game.

Pulled Beef Sanwiches

This recipe is wonderful for those days when you know your evening may be hectic, but you want a delicious satisfying meal.

The ingredients can be put in the crock-pot in the morning, and by evening your family will be enticed by aroma and flavors beckoning them to the table.


INGREDIENTS:
3 pounds boneless grass-fed beef chuck shoulder roast
2 cups ketchup
1 medium onion, chopped
1/4 cup cider vinegar
1/4 cup dark molasses
2 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1/2 teaspoon dry mustard
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
Sesame seed buns, split

DIRECTIONS:
Cut roast in half and place in slow cooker. Created a sauce mixture by combining the ketchup, onion, vinegar, molasses, Worcestershire sauce, garlic, salt, pepper, mustard, garlic powder and pepper flakes in large bowl. Pour mixture over roast. Cover, and cook on LOW 8-10 hours.

Remove roast from sauce; cool slightly. Shred meat with 2 forks.

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Place meat back into sauce. Stir to coat evenly. Add salt and pepper to taste. Cook an additional 15-30 min. or until hot. Spoon filling into sandwich buns and top with additional sauce.

Makes 12 servings.

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Mexican Meatloaf

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Mexican Meatloaf:

INGREDIENTS:
3# ground beef
3 eggs
1 cup salsa
2 cups coarse crumbled corn tortilla chips

Optional additions:

1/2 cup chopped onions
1/4 cup chopped green chilis
1 cup Cheese - I use sharp

INSTRUCTIONS:

Line a lipped cookie sheet with aluminum foil - grease.
Pat out 1/4 of meat mixture, sprinkle with grated cheese, then pat 1/4 meat mixture on top
Create a second loaf in the same manner.
Bake at 350° for 45-50 minutes.

Serve with pickled jalapeños and catsup

Serves 10

Freezer Tips

We want you to enjoy the maximum value from your beef. So with that in mind, we wrote up a few of our favorite freezer tips.

Handle vacuum sealed bags carefully. They can puncture if mishandled. Place them one by one in the freezer instead of dumping them in! Some people keep a pair of gloves handy near their freezer for this procedure.

 Beef organized nicely in a chest freezer

Beef organized nicely in a chest freezer

Organize your freezer with dividers/boxes/bins or bags. My freezer has four compartments made with plywood that fit perfectly. (But I have a handy hubby!) With that arrangement, I am able to sort by type of food and date. It helps me use what is in my freezer instead of letting items get buried in the bottom where I can’t see them.

 beef In bins with labels in an upright freezer

beef In bins with labels in an upright freezer

Jemena has an inventory list on her freezer doors listed by shelf. She does it on a dry erase board and marks items off as she uses them. We have a selection of freezer inventory sheets available for your use. As well as the labels shown in the photo above. (Offered with permission of 2Haveand2Fold.com)

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In another chest freezer we use sturdy bags with handles to organize our storage. We sort by the type of meat, roasts, steaks, stew meat, burger, etc. The bags have labels on the outside and a snap on top. We put boxes of burger on bottom of freezer (same boxes we deliver your beef in!), then put bags on top of those boxes. Bags are easy to move aside to get into boxes.

We recommend our customers attempt to use their beef within a year from purchase. However, we have beef in our freezer from four years ago and we have never had a problem using it.

Tacos

Taco night is a mainstay at our home.   Quick to cook, easy to customize to each family members desires, and healthy when using low-fat grass-fed beef from Mountain Beef.  What's not to love?  Yet those aren't the only reason our family loves taco nights.  This meal is also a secret weapon against a time-crunched world.   Cooking a little extra taco meat one night can reduce meal prep to a simple reheat for family friendly "Pronto Nachos" the next night as well!
 

INSTRUCTIONS:
Add olive oil to pan, warm pan with medium heat till garlic sizzles when added.
Add garlic and onions and cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally till onions are softened.
Add Hamburger and cook, stirring regularly. 
Stir in taco seasoning and continue cooking until meat is done.

 INGREDIENTS:

MEAT:
2 lbs. hamburger thawed
2 Tbls. olive oil
1/2 cup chopped onion
1-2 Tbls chopped garlic
Taco seasoning (or customize your own.)

Thanks to it's low-fat content, hamburger from Mountain Beef typically needs no draining!

WRAP:
Corn or Flour Tortillas
- low carb option - 
Use Lettuce for your crunchy low carb options!

TOPPINGS:  (as desired)
Sour Cream
Cheese
Salsa
Chopped Olives
Shredded Lettuce
Cilantro
Onions

2018 Gathering Yearlings:

The culmination of a year’s worth of work starts with gathering yearlings for harvest, to supply our Mountain Beef family and friends with an annual supply of nutritious grass-fed, grass-finished beef.  Our teenagers set out on horseback to gather and trail 150 head of yearlings, which are 18 month old calves, that graze summer pasture on the Zumwalt prairie.

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They trailed them 16 miles to the home ranch where the mobile slaughter unit harvests the yearlings.  This is one of the many responsibilities our children have on the family ranch.  

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 Thirsty Cattle

Thirsty Cattle

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Carne Asada:

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DIRECTIONS:

In a gallon size resealable bag, combine lime juice, crushed garlic, orange juice, cilantro, salt, pepper, olive oil, jalapeno, and vinegar. Mix well.

Add the flank steak to the resealable bag. Seal it tightly. Ensure that all the meat is exposed to the marinade. Refrigerate for at least 2 hours, or overnight.

Heat grill to high heat.

Remove the flank steak from the marinade, and discard excess marinade. Cook on the grill for 7 to 10 minutes per side.

Once done, remove from heat and let rest 10 minutes. Slice against the grain, and serve.

Carne Asada can be ruined by the last step of the process.  The grain of the steak can be identified by lines in the meat... make sure to cut across the grain and not with the grain to insure a flavorful and tender experience.

 

INGREDIENTS:

4 tbls lime juice - preferably fresh
4 tsp. crushed garlic
½ cup orange juice
1 cup chopped fresh cilantro
½ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon black pepper
¼ cup olive oil
1 jalapeno, minced
2 tablespoons white vinegar
1 (2 pound) flank steak