It started with a craving for a filet Mignon and a trip to Wild Oats. I have a no-fail recipe for a pan-sauteed filet, and planned my blog entry around that. I didn't wonder why it was only $11 a pound, I was just happy about it. I didn't blink when the chalkboard sign advertised "Grass Fed". I bought my steaks and brought them home, planning to impress. I made a reduced sauce, with which to finish the dish. Everything was going so well- the sauce was fragrant and had thickened according to the recipe. The steaks seared and smelled so good as they finished that I couldn't wait to plate dinner. See?!?!
They were off the heat and had rested and it was finally time to eat. First bite, not great. Second bite, not the regular taste and texture I was expecting. By the third bite, I knew that something had gone awry. The meat tasted gamey and so I started thinking about it. There had been little or no visible fat before cooking. I thought "well, maybe grass-fed really means something"- so I checked it out online. Yep. There is a lot of discussion about corn fed, grass fed and grain fed beef on the internet. I never stopped to think about it before, but of course what a cow eats will make its meat taste one way or another. I prefer grain-fed. It's what I am used to. It is what makes steak one of my favorite foods. Sure, many cuts of grass-fed beef have half the fat of grain-fed beef, grass-fed beef has more omega 3s. But I'm not eating my steak and trying to be healthy about it! When I want a steak, I want a juicy, well marbled, potentially artery-clogging hunk 'o meat. I probably could have shown you my sauce and my steak and lied that it was a good dinner- you can't taste a picture- but it would have been dishonest. We're all here trying things out and learning together. So there you have it. I'm still craving an honest-to-goodness perfect steak. You'll be the first to know when I find one...and the eggs.