Abundantly Green in Central Kitsap raises cattle the old-fashioned way, on the family farm using local feed, without any antibiotics or hormones. The farm goes to the trouble of certifying their produce organic but they don’t certify the meat because the cost of organic feed would push the costs of this meat up. Read Cliff Wind and Marilyn Holt’s philosophy of raising cattle. The Abundantly Green farm stand and farmers market booth also offers Woolly Acres lamb.
The farm store is open Tuesday 2 to 6:30 p.m. at 1146 NE Madison Rd, Poulsbo, WA 98370. Check out the web site directions.
Blackjack Valley Farm
Karen Olsen’s been raising cattle since she was a kid. Her Port Orchard farm includes a farm store where you can pick up beef, chickens, eggs (in season), and raw milk! You can also pick up her meat and milk at Colello’s Farm Stand.
Karen updates her Facebook page with news about her cows!
Shorts Family Farm
Kevin Short raises cattle on his Chimacum family farm in Jefferson County. With 300 acres they have plenty of room to move and plenty of grass to eat! He doesn’t use hormones or antibiotics. The family sometimes has a booth at the Poulsbo Farmers Market, and you can sometimes find Shorts meat at Colello’s Farm Stand.
Tom Clark travels the farthest to bring us meat from the farm. He and Holly farm in sunny Sequim, in Clallam County. Clark Meats have a distinct and delicious taste, a true terroire! The Clarks sell their no hormones, no antibiotics, grass-fed meat to many people like me who can no longer eat commercially raised beef. You can catch the Clarks at the Poulsbo Farmers Market.
Contact info: Holly and Tom Clark, 863 E. Anderson, Sequim WA 98382. Phone: (360) 681-5499
Flying Dog Farm
This Mason County farm raises pork, beef and poultry on pasture without hormones or antibiotics. In Kitsap you can find them at the Bremerton Farmers Market. Check out their web site for other ways to order their meat.
Local Meat Processing
Did you know that only meat processed in a USDA facility can be sold at farmers markets? There are no USDA processing plants on the Olympic Peninsula, so farmers have to ship their animals a significant distance to be processed. Two regional facilities inspected by the Washington State Department of Agriculture can process meat sold to an individual. However, this meat can’t be sold to anyone else or donated to a food bank.
When you go to the farmers market you find vendors there with freezers full of meat. They’ve had their meat processed at a USDA facility. They also offer to sell quarter, half and whole cows, lambs, and pigs. The way this works is, you sign up to buy the animal and put up a deposit, or pay in advance. The farmer raises the animal – this takes a while! The farmer will take the animal to the butcher. The farmer or the butcher will contact you when the animal is processed to come pick up the meat. You pick it up, take it home, and put it in your freezer.
How much freezer space do you need? Less than you think. I have an upright freezer and put half a pig on one shelf. Cliff and Marilyn Holt say “A rule of thumb is one cubic foot of freezer space for each 35-40 pounds of cut and wrapped meat.”
How to Cook Local Meat
Now you have meat like your grandmother used to eat! It’s healthy food and it’s going to taste fantastic. Remember though that it’s much leaner than the meat you’re used to eating. That means it doesn’t have as much fat. Also, no one has injected this meat with brine so it will plump up in the pan. You may be used to just dropping a steak in a dry pan, but that will dry up this meat. You’ll need to fry it in butter, olive oil, grapeseed oil, or whatever fat you prefer to use.
Here are more tips from Sustainable Table: How to Cook Grass-Fed Beef.