Sunday, February 15, 2009

farmers' market finds

yesterday, we visited the santa monica farmers' market to check out the fresh-from-the-farm meats. we arrived right before closing time so things were winding down, but i did get the chance to briefly talk to a couple of the meat-vendors.

the first vendor we came across was a farmer for rocky canyon. he had a pretty wide selection of grass-fed beef and humanely raised pork, along with fresh eggs, homemade sausages, juice, sweet potatoes, pomegranates, apples, eggplant, onions, melons, tomatoes, and cucumbers (in season, of course).

my excitement came from kathy lindner of lindner bison. she is incredibly warm and helpful; you could tell she really had a passion for bringing her customers top-notch, tasty products. their story is great-- kathy tried bison meat and loved it so much that her and her husband decided they had to leave their jobs and dedicate their lives to raising bison! their backgrounds helped out of course, him having a lifelong passions for farming and her being a descendant of margaret carlston, the "cattle queen of montana," but now they commute between their southern california home (and farmers' markets!) and the ranch in northern california. how inspiring! i'd like a 20-lb. assortment please, with bison tenderloin, some burgers, meaty soup bones, and jerky... and toss in a few bones for the pooch, please!

here's a picture from their ranch--

also, i learned a new buffalo (or should i say "bison bison") fact from their website:

"Is bison the same as buffalo? It should be. When America's pioneers saw bison for the very first time, they had no name for it. Because it looked similar to a European animal called "buffalo", that's the original term that stuck. For years the word "buffalo" has been used interchangeably with the species name, "bison bison". But when it comes to food labeling, it's another story.As it turns out, labeling laws are so loose in our country, if we were to label our meat "buffalo" we could be selling water buffalo, cape buffalo or North American buffalo. Even if it were North American buffalo, we legally can add up to 49% beef to the ground meat product, still call it buffalo, and not tell you. It's all perfectly legal. Because of this, Lindner Bison from the beginning decided to label our meat by the species name (bison bison). That way, our customers will never have to wonder what they are actually getting from us."

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