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American Grass Fed Beef Newsletter

February,  2004
Circulation 19,018

Welcome to the latest issue of the American Grass Fed Beef Newsletter. In this issue, you will find the following:

* Brandied, Buttered, Wined Shanks
* Share Your Recipe
* Cows On Pasture Have 300 TO 500% More CLA
* Beef Short Ribs Recipe


Our thanks to Patricia Oates of Buena Vista, CO for submitting our very first recipe using our new recipe, tips and suggestion form.  This is a wonderful recipe which uses our inexpensive cuts.  Customers can have a delicious grass fed beef meal and not spend a fortune with this recipe.

Here are Patricia's recipe and comments:

These days "slow, careful cooking" seems to be on the rise once again. This recipe was developed in Australia many years ago when first I immigrated there. Beef was not top of the line. No, it was lamb and mutton. 

What beef we were able to find in North Queensland in 1963 had walked a long way to get to my kitchen! So, I found that slow cooking with interesting ingredients made for nice dishes. Here is one that will delight the palate, and during the cooking, tantalize the olfactory nerves! The richness of flavor in the less expensive beef cuts makes this a dish to cook many times. It is my pleasure to offer it to you.

Servings:  4

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Cook/Bake Time: 2 1/2 hours


4 crosscut beef shanks
1 large red onion -- chopped
2 cloves garlic -- finely minced
2 tablespoons unsweetened butter
1/2 cup brandy
1 cup orange juice with pulp
1 & 1/2 cups red wine
1/2 teaspoon white pepper
1 teaspoon sea salt


Prepare beef shanks by taking a sharp paring knife and cutting small slits into the white tissue that encircles them; cut every inch (this will stop their curling upwards during slow cooking). Heat butter in large cooking pot, place chopped onion in, and cook until onion is transparent. Remove onion to a warm bowl.

Turn up heat for searing beef shanks on both sides. Lower heat, pour brandy over beef.

Add onions, orange juice, 1 cup red wine, pepper, garlic, salt. Stir and distribute well around shanks.

Reduce heat to a GENTLE simmer, cover pot, and cook for two and one-half hours. You may turn beef over once during this cooking; add the extra wine if sauce appears to be reducing too quickly. (I find that another 1/4 to 1/2 cup of wine may be needed in last hour of cooking.)

This simple, elegant dish is best served with plain boiled potatoes still in their jackets, a fresh green salad, and crunchy Italian-style bread (to soak up the sauce, naturally!).

NOTE: We do not have beef shanks at I substituted a trimmed chuck roast for the shanks and sliced it into smaller pieces.

My husband was grumbling over the brandy beef. He does not like to venture into the world of using liquor in recipes. However, when I got home from picking up our daughter, he had cheated and snuck a bite of the beef. I walked through the door and the first words out of his mouth were, "That is absolutely the best meat I have ever eaten." 

It was truly very tender and tasty. I served the beef over rice and with garlic Texas toast. This recipe is definitely a winner with our family.

Lynette Blackwell
Customer Service


For those who enjoy sharing grass fed beef recipes, tips or suggestions with us, please use our form at:

We are always thrilled to hear from our customers and visitors.


Reprinted with the permission of Dr. Tilak Dhiman, Utah State University

Conjugated linoleic acid (CLA) occurs naturally in foods. However, the principle dietary sources are dairy products and foods derived from ruminants. The CLA has been shown to have variety of health benefits in animal models such as prevention of tumor development and growth (Pariza et al., 2001), protection of arterial walls from plaque formation (Kritchevsky et al., 2001), anti-diabetic effects (Ryder et al., 2001), and promotion of lean growth while diminishing fat deposition (Pariza et al., 2001). 

Research at the Utah State University has shown that cows grazing on pasture has 300 to 500% more CLA in milk fat compared with cows fed a typical dairy cow diet containing 50% conserved forage (hay or silage) and 50% concentrate. 

Grass consumed in fresh state is more efficient in increasing CLA in milk than the same grass fed in dried form. 

Omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids are essential polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFA’s) for human health. An optimum dietary ratio of omega-3: 6 rather than the absolute amounts strongly influence the conversion and incorporation of PUFA’s into body lipids. A dietary ratio of 0.25 or higher between omega-3: 6 have been suggested to be the optimum for utilization of omega fatty acids. Research at the Utah State University has shown that cows grazing on pasture have higher proportions of omega-3 fatty acids (0.38 vs. 1.15% of total fat) in milk than milk from cows fed a typical dairy cow diet containing 50% conserved forage and 50% concentrate. Cows grazing on pasture also had higher omega-3: 6 ratios. 

Vitamin E is essential for reproduction and immune functions in humans. Research shows that cows grazing on pasture had higher levels of a-tocopherol (Vitamin E) in milk compared with cows fed a typical dairy cow diet containing 50% conserved forage and 50% concentrate. 

Overall the milk from cows grazing on pasture had higher levels of fatty acids and vitamins that are essential for human health. The CLA intake in humans can be increased to a level that has been shown to reduce the incidences of cancer in animal models through the consumption of CLA enriched dairy products from cows grazing on green pasture. 


Kritchevsky, D., S. A. Tepper, S. Wright, P. Tso, and S.K. Czarnecki. 2000. Influence of conjugated linoelic acid (CLA) on establishment and progression of arteriosclerosis in rabbits. J. Am. College of Nut. 19(4): 472S-477S. 

Pariza, M. W., Y. Park, and M. E. Cook. 2001. The biologically active isomers of conjugated linoleic acid. Progress in Lipis Res. 40:283-298 

Ryder, J.W., C. P. Portocarrero, X. M. Song, L. Cui, M. Yu, T. Combatsiaris, D. Galuska, D. E. Bauman, D. M. Barbano, M. J. Charron, J. R. Zierath, and K. L. Houseknecht. 2001. Isomer-specific antidiabetic properties of conjugated linoleid acid-improved glucose tolerance, skeletal muscle insulin action, and UCP-2 gene expression. Diabetes 50: 1149-1157 


6 lbs Grass Fed Beef Short Ribs
Favorite BBQ Sauce

Parboil ribs for 30-45 minutes then remove to drain and cool for 10 min.

Place ribs on heavy duty tin foil with the fat side of the ribs up. Coat the ribs with a small amount of your favorite BBQ sauce.

Seal the tin foil and place the bundle in a 1 in. pan. Place in a pre-heated oven set to 175 degrees for 4-5 hours. After cooking remove any excess fat and enjoy.

Patricia Whisnant, DVM
Grass Farmer and Veterinarian

P.S.  Feel free to forward this newsletter to your friends, clients and colleagues.

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