As you can probably tell from my recipes, I'm not a big meat eater - especially beef. I don't have any ethical issues with meat (well, except for lamb and veal, which I think are too cute to eat), it's just not something I crave. There are so many other flavors and textures that I'd much rather have. But Mr. ValleyWriter doesn't consider a meal (other than pasta or pizza) complete unless some kind of meat is served with it - so we eat a lot of chicken around here.
I noticed lately, however, that a lot of foodies out there were espousing the wonders of grass-fed beef. My friend The Leftover Queen has told me several times that it's a totally different taste from grain-fed beef - so I decided this week it was well-past time to give it a try.
I tried 2 stores near my home that have butcher shops, thinking they might have it - to no avail. Luckily, the Pioneer Valley has many, many shopping options - so I finally found it at the River Valley Market Coop in Northampton. That particular day, they had fresh grass-fed ground beef from nearby River Rock Farm. Not only is their beef grass-fed, it's also aged to enhance the flavor. At $7.99/lb, I thought it was still pretty dear for ground beef... but after grilling up some hamburger patties for dinner - I am sold!
Wow oh wow! These burgers were juicy and flavorful and incredibly tender. Unlike far too many hockey-puck hamburgers I've had, this was one that I wanted to savor every bite of - and *not* load up with ketchup or relish. If you live in the Western MA or Boston area - check out River Rock Farm. They deliver for a reasonable fee, and they sell at several local stores and farmer's markets.