Every fall, we order a quarter cow. Yes, that's what we call it around here. The meat from 1/4 of a cow to fill our freezer and feed us for a year.
I'm fortunate enough to live in a part of the country with plenty of small farmers who still raise their happy cows on pasture. And fortunate enough to have a wonderful butcher shop nearby.
I grew up eating the meat from this particular butcher shop. It's the best meat you'll ever taste.
Usually, each fall we order our quarter of beef from the shop. We just take whatever local farmer's meat they happen to have on hand.
However, this fall we were lucky to discover that one of our close friends' parents raise pastured cows.
We went in with others and were able to get a whole cow processed (each taking a quarter).
Another bonus for those who buy meat this way - the meat is processed at the same price for the entire quarter. So, let's say you pay $3 per pound for all the meat. That means you are paying $3 per pound for not only the ground beef, but also for the t-bone steaks, the porterhouse steaks, fajita meat, roasts, etc. It's a win-win situation!
To us, this is normal. It's how we get good meat. Each time I taste meat from the grocery store, I cringe. It tastes..... horrible. Disgusting. It brings images of factory farms and unhappy animals. Nothing like the meat we get from our local shop. I laughed when, a few months ago, TIME magazine ran an article talking about this "new" way to buy local meat. They spoke of people going together to buy a cow from a local farmer to be shared amongst them. Guess I was surprised because I assumed this was not something unique. Guess I was wrong again.
We're definitely blessed, living somewhere where we can enjoy the freshest, best-quality local meats.