Posted 11/15/2023 10:37 (#10482907 - in reply to #10482450) Subject: RE: USDA Beef grades
John, I think what he was not understanding that "prime rib" has become a trademark of a cut of beef. It no longer indicates what the grade of the meat is. My wife and I needed to make a trip into Minneapolis a few weeks ago, and when we went out to eat, I ordered the "prime rib." It was cow beef. No marbling, but there was a limited fat rind. No flavor - except for the seasoning they added. The thing is - a whole lot of customers they get, I'm sure, have no idea that what they are eating is cow beef. Out here in the Hills, Deadwood is the same thing. "Prime rib" is cow beef. Most people don't know the difference. Out here, I understand this - they want to keep the price cheap, but se
So, if you want real "prime rib" - you now need to pay attention to the USDA grade also - and realize that "prime" does not necessarily mean "USDA prime grading."
On grass fed beef, you open another can of worms. My wife and her brother tried that for a short time on the ranch, and then quit doing it. They would ship the cattle off grass to eastern MN - a stressful 600 mile trip. Then half the cattle would be killed, but the rest would go on "grass" feed until they could handle them. I've fed cattle most of my life, and anyone who has knows that the second half would have burned up all the marbling in the meat due to the stress they were under. That cannot be replaced with a short time back on feed, but the fat rind around the outside is still pretty much there. This, IMHO, is one reason why grass fed beef is often tough and tasteless. The people who are involved in the business don't have a clue about how to market quality beef.
I've actually been thinking about having the ranch keep an animal to put in the freezer. I think the way to do this would be to keep back a steer calf - or - keep an open heifer. Then butcher it late fall - prior to any bad weather. I have never really liked grass fed beef - but I do know the ability of cattle on feed to put fat in the meat going into winter. It is probably from way back in evolution where an animals survival depended on this. I always marveled at moose - the bulls would enter winter after not eating for about a month (they were not thinking about eating at all), but the cows would enter the period with plenty of fat reserves. We knew that the best meat from the bulls came early in the season before their attention turned totally toward the cows.