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GrassRoots Meats Newsletter November 2014

Summer Reflections 

It was a wonderful summer and watching our grandchildren grow up enjoying ranch life was one of the most rewarding parts. I took Bella and Charlee, both 3, on a walk recently and they found this tree to nestle into for a break in the shade, a spot seemingly created just for them.

A few days later we caught this photo of a double rainbow from the front porch, a reminder to us of our blessings and our prosperity. The irrigation water is turned off and soon the cattle will be settled into their winter pastures, affording us a time to recover from our seemingly never ending summer workload.

Fall Colors on the Piedra River 
One of the primary benefits of living so far from town is the beauty of the drive to and from. Approaching the bridge over the Piedra River just two miles before our turn off to the ranch, I was taken by the fact that the color of the newly painted lines in the road exactly matched the cottonwoods.

Standing on the bridge and gazing downstream afforded a view that both calmed and excited my spirit at the same time. I suppose that no matter where you live fall is lovely, but it never fails to make me wonder at how creative our creator was/is, and how much He must love us to give us this beautiful gift year after year.

The Retail (Warehouse) Side of Things 

Ben thought you might like to know how our process works for getting the meat ready for shipping to you. The meat comes bagged like this from our processor, at which time we sort it into the various cuts.

The cuts are then labeled and dated, then either put into a box or a basket and stored in our large freezer as back stock. 

As needed the back stock meat is transferred from the large freezer into the smaller freezer, where the orders are pulled from each week. The beef, lamb, and chicken each have their own stock area in the freezer.

Once the boxes are assembled and the meat is pulled and packed for each order the boxes are temporarily stored in the large freezer, awaiting pickup by the UPS driver, then off to you, our anxious customers. While the system might not be perfect it is nicely organized and works for us.
Ben's Blog 
Here at GrassRoots Meats we find ourselves in the middle of a season of change. All around us the cottonwoods, aspens, and oaks are in a blaze of orange and yellow. The garden is quickly yielding to the frost and the tomatoes, squash, and corn are turning yellow and brown from the cold. 

Most notably our irrigation water just got shut off. Water in the west, and really anywhere, is the key to life. Without water our pastures go dormant, and with the dormancy comes a decrease in the availability of feed for the cattle. In many ways this signals the end of the season for us and affirms that while we do raise beef, what we really do is farm grass and employ the cattle to harvest it for us. 

It's hard for me to admit, strangely. I want to call myself a rancher or a cowboy. It sounds more romantic. But at the end of the day, I am a grass farmer, and I have around 90 of the smelliest, hairiest, laziest employees/co-workers a guy could ask for. I grow grass. They lie around, eat the grass, and get fat. But it's a good system, and I couldn't be happier. 

Farewell to Ben 

It is with great sadness that we say goodbye to Ben Rote, our 2014 intern. Ben came to us from Memphis, Tennessee, anxious to learn all he could about ranching in the west. While I am sure it has been an experience involving much harder work than he had anticipated, he has often said that it is the hardest work that he has ever loved.

I cannot say enough about how great it has been getting to know Ben, sharing many a meal with him, and watching him grow both as a person and a ranch hand. His attitude always positive, he approached each new task with enthusiasm and dedication. The many long hours he has worked took a tremendous load off of Allan's shoulders, literally, and enabled Allan to accomplish many more tasks on the ranch than would have been humanly possible by himself. 

We wish Ben nothing but the best as he finds his way into the ranching world. Tennessee is calling him home, for now, and he is searching for an opportunity that suits him and his skills. We ask God's blessings over him as he finds his way.

November Special 

Lamb Leg Steaks are on our special's menu this month. This is a cut that might be unfamiliar to many of our lamb lovers, but one I consider to be our very best value. With almost no waste short of a small bone, leg steaks are suitable for frying, barbecuing, grilling, and roasting in the oven. Lamb is a very tender meat and does not require much cooking, so it's ideal for preparing a quick meal. Herbs such as mint and rosemary are commonly used, but allow your own creativity with favorite spices to blossom. 

This recipe for Rosemary Pesto-Crusted Leg Steaks is absolutely mouth watering.

Chargrilled Lamb Steaks with Garlic and Rosemary is another recipe sure to make you a leg steak lover.

This month  you can take $2.00 a pound off of our regular price of $13.99 on our Lamb Leg Steaks, for a sale price of just $11.99 per pound

Offer good only while supplies last!
Thanksgiving Turkeys 

And don't forget that for the first time we have Free Range, Organic Turkeys for your Thanksgiving or Christmas celebration this year. They range in size from 8 to 16 pounds, and run $5.79 per pound.
In Closing . . .   

As you read this Allan and I will be headed back to port from our Caribbean Cruise. Thanks to all of your for your well wishes and your advice on motion sickness. We will surely have many great stories to tell and pictures to share. God bless you all!
Lois & Allan

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