3 Cs Chili – Award Winning Chili from Robb Wolf
Servings: 10 (at least!)
1600g ground beef
140g chopped bacon
2 red onions
5 garlic cloves, crushed
2 tins chopped tomatoes
2 tablespoons tomato puree
2 tablespoons pure cocoa powder
2 tablespoons instant coffee granules
2 tablespoons mild chilli powder
2 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
1 tablespoon ground cumin
1 tablespoon smoked paprika
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1 teaspoon extra hot chilli powder
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
– Chop up the red onion and bacon into small bits.
– In a very large pot, throw the olive oil, bacon, crushed garlic and onion and cook slowly until the onion is translucent and the bacon more or less cooked.
– Toss in the ground beef and brown it. While it’s browning, measure the rest of the dry ingredients in a bowl: cocoa powder, coffee granules, chilli powder (both mild and hot), cumin, paprika, oregano, sea salt and black pepper.
– Add this mixture to the pot and stir well. Then add your chopped tomatoes, tomato paste and balsamic vinegar.
Let this cook for a good half hour or preferably more on a slow, low heat. Even better, cook the day before and then reheat and serve the following day!
Notes: This makes a HUGE batch of chilli and is perfect for freezing!
The Paleo Challenge begins today. Make sure you add me on Facebook FACEBOOK GROUP to be added to the Facebook group.
Be sure to download the rules and food log below and read the instructions carefully. If you have questions, then come to the info session tonight to make sure you are in the loop and set yourself up for success.
Remember pictures are taking at the gym this week and you can pay at the front desk. CASH ONLY.
The CrossFit world is going nuts over bulletproof coffee, which means you should be too right? Well, let’s first discuss what it is and if it is something that what would work for you.
Bulletproof coffee combines fresh brewed coffee with pastured grass fed butter (e.g. Kerry Gold) with MCT Oil (Medium Chain Tryglycerides, which is fancy for a fat that you use relatively quickly for energy and brain function). You can a little sweetener (e.g. Honey) and some cinnamon for a little extra taste. To have the coffee come out like your favorite latte, mix this concoction in a Vitamix or similar high powered blender…this is really the only way to get the froth factor.
You can read the recipe right here:
- At least 2tbs Kerrygold unsalted grass-fed butter (I like up to 6 tbps, or 80g or 88 ml).
- 1-2tbs of MCT oil (15-30 ml)
- 2 cups (~453g or 500ml) of hot coffee brewed with low-toxin beans (like Bulletproof Upgraded Coffee) using a paper filter (Hario V60 pourover is my favorite brewing method, and it’s only $10).
5 Steps To Bulletproof Your Coffee
#1 Make coffee: Brew coffee as you normally would.
#2 Pre-heat blender: Boil extra water and pour it into a blender while your coffee brews to pre-heat the blender.
#3 Froth: Empty hot water from the now pre-heated blender and add the brewed coffee, butter, and MCT oil. Blend until there is a thick layer of foam on top like a latte. A Blend-tec or Vitamix blender will do it quickly, a normal countertop blender takes longer, and a handblender works ok if you don’t have a real blender.
#4 (optional) Add cinnamon, vanilla, dark chocolate, or a sweetener like Stevia, erythritol, or xylitol (this is technically a sacrilege if you use awesome beans, but some people love their mocha…)
#5 : Put on a satisfied look and enjoy the high performance buzz from your creamy mug of Bulletproof Coffee as you watch your chubby, tired coworkers eat low-fat yogurt and twigs for breakfast. It’s almost unfair.
There are some other takes on primal coffee recipes, think of this as a whole foods-based protein shake.
•1 cup (240 ml) coffee
•2 pastured eggs
•1 tsp sugar
•Pinch of salt
I am personally particularly fond of the a combination of 3-4 whole eggs, 1-2 T MCT Oil, 4 T Butter, 1 T Honey, and 1 t Cinnamon. It has a real nice texture, very smooth and tastes delicious.
WHAT!?!?!? EGGS IN MY COFFEE???
Don’t be a hater until you try it. Try it once and try variations that suit you. For me, Craig, Brit, Dana and some other bulletproofers, the energy and cognition benefits are noticeable right away. It takes the place of a large breakfast and keeps me sharp. I feel satiated until lunch because of the egg protein and I get that satisfaction that I used to get from putting crap (e.g. skin milk, sugar, etc.) in days before Paleo.
WHAT: 2013 Fall Paleo Challenge, 30 Day Strict Paleo Challenge
WHEN: September 9, 2013
Welcome. The CFH30 is a 30-day nutrition and performance challenge. It is based on principles of the Paleolithic Diet, modern day life, science, and practical experience. This isn’t just a competition; it’s a springboard for incorporating healthy dieting practices into your life and holding yourself accountable.
During the 30 days of this challenge, you are expected to be “strict” and not stray from the guidelines. This means, no grains, no dairy, no sugar…Not only do you need to have some self-discipline to carry through on this endeavor, but it is also an exercise in character. Everything is published to the group, and only you will know if you are being honest.
Judging the Contest.
All three areas below will count for your final score. Qualified Judges (e.g. two CFH coaches and one outsourced judge) will complete judging.
1. Before (Day 1) and After (Day 30) photos
2. Compliance (Journaling to show Adherence)
Buy – In. There is more motivation from the fear of losing something. The Buy-In is $100. Don’t Freak Out!! You will get $50 of this back IF you complete the program (meaning journaling your food and participating all 30 days). If you drop out completely, your $$ will be forfeited. Our goal with this is to keep all of you in the game from start to finish! CASH ONLY. Will be collected at the front desk starting September 3rd and must be paid by September 12, 2013.
Do not enter this competition half-heartedly. If you are not going for the prize but still want a little support, please email us and we will add you to the group, and you will still need to support the kitty. If you are not part of the challenge and are asking questions on the blog, you should join the challenge and support the kitty. It is only fair to all the other players.
This contest is for current CFH members only.
I’m grateful to have our friend David Maren of Tendergrass Farms back to pen today’s guest post. This is the last post in a three part series on the assertions that retailers make about the way their poultry, pork, and beef is raised. And don’t miss the free grass fed steak coupon code that he’s generously provided at the end of the post!
This is the third and final post in my series about animal production claims. In the previous two posts I’ve endeavored to expose some of the confusing and deceptive claims that marketers make about the way that their chickens, turkeys, and pigs are raised. Today my goal is to help you better understand the options you’re presented with when you want to purchase beef. In a previous post, Mark gave an overview of the differences between grass fed and grain fed beef where he touched on everything from taste to nutritional profiles and even pricing and availability. This post has a much narrower goal of helping you figure out what exactly you’re being offered, whether it claims to be grass fed, grain fed, pasture raised, free range, all natural, or organic. Mark’s verdict in his post was that while you need to be eating lots of good beef, grass fed beef isn’t always going to be available or affordable for everyone. This post will help you understand the whole spectrum of beef options that you have to choose from whether or not grass fed is what you’re going for.
Bovine American History and Conventional Beef
Before World War II virtually all beef in this country was raised from birth to slaughter on pasture where 100% of their nutrients came from forage: grass, clover, and other green leafy plants. Generally speaking, cows were born, weaned, grazed, and finished all on the same farm. However, starting in the late 1940’s, the model of beef production started to shift dramatically toward feedlots. The primary factors that lead to this change were an increasing consumer demand for well-marbled beef that is more easily produced with grain feeding than grass, low grain prices, and the advent of penicillin which made it possible to keep vast numbers of cows in one place without rampant disease.1
As a result of this trend, today’s conventional grain-finished beef industry produces the vast majority of beef on the market. The conventional beef industry is divided into two sectors: cow-calf operations and feeding operations. Nearly all cows that end up in feedlots originally came from pastures. Cow-calf farms, often located in areas where the land cannot easily be used for row crops, usually keep herds of 40 to 100 or more female cows that give birth to calves that are weaned and sold at regional buying stations. The number of months that these animals spend on pasture with their mothers depends a lot on the local geography, climate, and season. The buying stations put together tractor-trailer loads of these feeder calves and ship them to the Great Plains where corn and soybeans are cheap and feedlots are plentiful. The number of months that these cattle are fed grain in feedlots varies from about 4 to 12 months. In addition to genetically modified corn and soy, feedlot rations are often comprised of cheaper ingredients including everything from urea to candy (ground up with the wrappers and all). Unless you see labeling claims or other point of sale claims (website claims, etc.) stating otherwise, it is safe to assume that you are being offered conventional feedlot-finished beef.
An example of all-natural, pasture-fed, antibiotic free, and growth hormone free claims. This is from the McAllen Ranch Beef site.
All Natural, Pasture-Fed
The first time I came across McAllen Ranch Beef was in a sponsored Google search result. At the time, McAllen Ranch was paying Google to display an ad for their website whenever a person googled “grass fed beef.” Out of curiosity, I clicked through to their website to see what they had to offer. I noticed almost immediately that on their website itself, the term “grass fed” had been replaced with terms like all-natural, pasture-fed, antibiotic free, and growth hormone free. That was the first red flag. The second was the fact that the company was based just north of the Mexican border in south Texas, an area where there is very little grass to speak of. When I gave them a call they admitted that in fact the vast majority of their beef was technically not grass fed because their cows were fed grain. As with so many of the other examples of marketing that we’ve looked at so far in the previous two posts, it appears to me that McAllen Ranch is not actually lying on their website. Let’s take a look at their claims one by one.
As we covered in detail in the pork production claims post, “all-natural” doesn’t necessarily refer to the way that the animal was raised. As with dry aged beef, “all-natural” refers to the way that the meat is handled postmortem. As long as it is free from added color, artificial flavors, or synthetic substances it can be called “all-natural” no matter how it was raised. This means that a huge percentage of the all-natural beef on the market today is raised in feedlots with GMO-feed, artificial hormones, and antibiotics. For example, after writing the last post on pork claims I had a phone conversation with Bill Niman, founder of Niman Ranch, who shared with me his disgust regarding the fact that Niman Ranch now buys all of their all natural beef directly from feedlots.
McAllen Ranch beef is also “pasture-fed.” This might be the trickiest claim of all. When most people hear “pasture-fed” they think “grass-fed” but there’s a very important distinction between these two terms. Pasture-fed, pastured, or pasture raised are all synonymous terms that mean that the animal was raised in a pasture of some form but it doesn’t necessarily mean that the animal exclusively ate grass while on pasture. In many areas of the world such as south Texas, grass is scarce and grain feeding is the only viable way to get cows to grow up to a good weight for slaughter quickly. By using the term “pasture-raised,” McAllen Ranch can raise their cows with large amounts of grain and very small amounts of forage without technically breaking the law as they would be doing if they called their beef “grass fed.” While not commonly used in the beef industry, the claim “free range” means virtually the same thing.
Antibiotic Free, Artificial Growth Hormone Free
In contrast, the terms “antibiotic free” and “hormone free” are actually very meaningful. While McAllen Ranch beef may not be grass fed, the fact that it is raised without the use of artificial hormone implants and subtherapeutic antibiotics is significant. This is because today almost all beef in the US is raised with the use both of those substances. Subtherapeutic antibiotics are used in beef production much as I described in the articles on pork and poultry. Instead of being used as a therapy for a specific veterinary diagnosis, subtherapeutic antibiotics are added to a cow’s daily ration to maximize its “performance” when packed into feedlots with tens of thousands of other potentially sick cows.
Similarly, conventionally raised feedlot beef is usually implanted with a pellet containing either estrogen or androgen hormones to maximize their growth. Note that in the US this is only legal in lamb and beef production. The pellet is typically implanted under the skin in the ear of the animal being that the ear doesn’t typically enter the food supply. As you can imagine, cows that are given artificial hormone implants grow much faster than artificial hormone free cows. Nearly all beef in the US is raised with both artificial hormones and subtherapeutic antibiotics.
A package of Applegate brand certified organic roast beef.
Certified Organic Beef
Certified Organic Beef production is regulated by the USDA National Organic Program (NOP). The NOP protocols that pertain to certified organic ruminants (animals that chew their cud such as cows and sheep) state that the animals must be raised on “pasture [with] daily grazing throughout the grazing season(s).”2 At this point it would appear that the organic regulation would require certified organic beef to be raised with the same standards as “pasture-fed” beef with the added requirement of only certified organic feed being used. There is, however, a loophole in the regulation that states that “yards, feeding pads, or feedlots” may be used for “ruminant slaughter stock” as long as the feedlot feeding period does not exceed 120 days (or 1/5 of the animal’s total life). Keep in mind that many conventional non-organic feedlots don’t keep their animals on the feedlot for more than 120 days either. It would be impractical for me to list every NOP requirement for certified organic beef in this post but it is important to point out that they do not allow the use of artificial hormones or antibiotics.3
The fact that a certain beef product is certified organic does not necessarily mean that it is not also grass fed. The Applegate product pictured above is not made from grass fed beef, but Applegate does have at least one certified organic grass fed beef product that I’m aware of. Another example of a company that offers certified organic grass fed beef is TX Bar Organics. Just remember that it isn’t safe to assume that all certified organic beef is 100% grass fed.
A product claiming to be “grass fed” as well as “grass finished.” This screenshot is from the Tendergrass Farms website.
Grass Fed, Grass Finished
The USDA standard for grass fed beef requires that grass and forage be the food source for grass fed cows for the entirety of the animal’s life. The standard does allow, of course, for grass fed calves to drink their mother’s milk but they cannot be fed grain and must have “continuous access to pasture during the growing season.” Stockpiled forage such as hay is acceptable and used widely in grass fed beef production, typically just in the winter. Notice that because the term “grass fed” can only be used when the animal is fed forage for the entirety of the animal’s life, the term “grass finished” doesn’t actually add any meaning when used in conjunction with “grass fed.” Here at Tendergrass Farms we originally didn’t use the term “grass finished” but we started getting so many phone calls from customers asking if our beef was grass fed and grass finished that we decided to use that language on our website to help clarify the issue. Many other grass fed beef farms and organizations use the same language to describe their 100% grass fed beef.
The USDA defines forage as “grass (annual and perennial), forbs (e.g., legumes, Brassica), browse, or cereal grain crops in the vegetative (pre-grain) state.” Legumes are plants from the bean family such as alfalfa or clover and brassicas are plants from the cabbage family such as rape. Note that cereal grain crops such as rye are allowed for use as forage for grass fed beef as long as the cows eat the rye shoots before they form grain heads. Out of all of these legally acceptable options, perennial grasses and clovers are by far the most commonly used. They require the least work to grow and are easily stored for winter as hay. The alternatives such as brassicas and annual grasses often provide more nutrient-dense forage which enables cows to grow more quickly, but the labor costs involved with planting and feeding annuals is very high compared with perennials so this method is less common.
One of the problems with the USDA definition for grass fed beef is that it has a loophole that allows for the use of grain “to ensure the animal’s well being at all times during adverse environmental or physical conditions.” One local grass fed beef company here in Virginia once disclosed to me that they have an internal policy with regard to this loophole that allows their farmers to feed up to 2% of the animal’s weight in grain per day during the winter months. Assuming that their cows weigh about 1000 pounds and given the fact that there are about 5 “winter months” in this part of the country, their policy would allow for each grass fed cow to be fed about 1.5 tons of grain per year. Amazingly, it can still be marketed as “grass fed beef.” As absurd as this idea might sound to the farmers here at Tendergrass and many other reputable grass fed beef organizations, this practice is not uncommon. As always, there’s no good alternative to doing your homework, asking your farmer exactly how their animals are raised, and tracking down for yourself the real story behind the label.
So where do we go from here?
Throughout this series of posts I’ve hammered the idea of not making assumptions about your meat sources and I’ve encouraged you to hold your suppliers accountable. The best way to do this is to take the time to get to know your suppliers. Call them up. Email them. Read the fine print on their websites. Ask the hard questions. Today, the internet makes this a lot easier than it was years ago. You might be surprised at what you find out. Here at Tendergrass we have an entire page called Grass Fed Standards where we tell you just how our meats are raised and most other companies that are honest will have similar materials readily available. Generally speaking, the more closely connected you can be to the farmer who raised your meat, the better. Just because the grass fed beef you’re offered might be raised in New Zealand or Australia (like the Applegate product above) doesn’t mean that it was necessarily raised according to low production standards, but it’s often nearly impossible to hold your farmer accountable when you (and your retailer) don’t even know who they are.
Go against the grain, get 5 free grass fed beef steaks
For those of you who think that grass fed beef sounds like the best option of all we’ve created a coupon code that’ll give you five (5) free 1/2 pound dry aged grass fed sirloin tip steaks (a $79.95 value) with all orders over $199 which will also qualify your order for Free Shipping. Just head over to the Tendergrass Farms online grass fed meats store and toss $199 of our yummy grass fed beef, pastured pork, pastured chicken, or pastured turkey into your cart. When you’re ready to check out just apply the coupon code GO-AGAINST-THE-GRAIN and five grass fed sirloin tip steaks will be miraculously added to your cart at a price of $0.00 (expires 9/30/13, limited to 50 redemptions, while supplies last).
Tip: If $199 sounds like a big first order just grab a couple friends from the gym and place an order together.
2You can read the full NOP regulations in the Electronic Code of Federal Regulations (ECFR).
3The Illinois State Bar Association has a great little summary of the legal side of this.
David Maren is a husband, father, farmer, and co-founder of Tendergrass Farms. Tendergrass Farms is a cooperative-style online grass fed meats shop that exists as a bridge between the often geographically isolated family farmer and committed grass fed meats enthusiasts like yourself. The Tendergrass Farms vision is to sustain family farms through making it easy for you to purchase their meats by taking advantage of appropriate technology and ultra-efficient transportation models that enable their meats to be shipped to fans all around the USA.
If you’re not already a huge fan of Tendergrass Farms, you’re missing out: Go bookmark their site, like their Facebook page, follow them on Twitter, and check out their grass fed blog!
Read more: http://www.marksdailyapple.com/what-you-should-know-about-beef-production-claims/#ixzz2YMcBKK4V