I’ve heard Paleo described as many things: radical, trendy, even dangerous. Frankly, I don’t see it. It’s radical to eat whole, healthy foods? It’s trendy to eat fruits, vegetables and meats that come from farm to table and bypass the factories? It’s dangerous to eat foods that make us more healthy instead of stuffing ourselves with chemicals made to look like a food? Well, if that’s the case, then sign me up for radical, trendy and dangerous.
But you will never convince me that keeping grains and dairy off my plate is more dangerous than eating beef that was processed with ammonia or 100 calorie diet packs that are so processed you can’t even pronounce what you’re eating. My two favorite arguments are, “but how will you get your calcium?” and “but you need whole grains for fiber!” I bet if I broke down the nutrients in a Paleo diet versus a Standard American Diet, the Paleo eaters are getting more calcium and more fiber. I’d put money on it. And, the calcium and fiber is coming from a food instead of a laboratory.
I think one of the only valid arguments against Paleo is that it’s expensive. Yes, it can be – whole, nutritious foods are more expensive than the heavily subsidized Frankenfoods. If you take your whole shopping list to a specialty store, you’re going to be paying a whole lot more money for things than you need to. My family makes fun of me because I usually end up making several different stops when I go grocery shopping. There’s some things I can only get at Whole Foods, some things I pick up at Sprouts, and for other things I go to Smith’s. When the farmers’ markets are running, I’m hitting those up, too. So I’m trading time and convenience for money. But in the long run, it’s worth it to me to know that I’m feeding my family foods to make them more healthy instead of less healthy.
But look for deals, too. The farmer I buy my grass fed beef from is incredibly accommodating. They take customer service to a whole new level. Not only do they offer a discount on bulk packages, they were willing to customize an order for me. They let me pick it up at a farmers’ market, and they made sure I was fully satisfied with the contents before she’d even ring it up. I ended up getting about 30lbs of grass fed beef for under $200. Do that math – that’s less than $7 per pound. That may seem like a lot, but when you figure I’m getting a variety of roasts, ground beef and hamburger patties, it’s really quite a steal.
I’d tried a commercially produced tri-tip roast before and I thought it was great. As fate would have it, my box contained three tri-tips. They were considerably smaller than the one I purchased in the store (added hormones, anyone?) but it also got me thinking. There are only two cuts of a tri-tip per cow, and with that in mind, what are the chances that my larger tri-tips that were commercially produced were all tri-tip, or tri-tip at all? Can you really trust what a business is putting on its label? I’ll take a farmer’s word over a commercial label any day.
I decided to make two since they were smaller than I anticipated – and I’m really glad I did. Both my guys went back for seconds, and there was barely any left for lunch. The flavor and texture was similar to prime rib. It’s a tougher cut of meat, so I decided a marinade was the way to go, cooked at a high temperature.
I hope my next bulk order has some tri-tips in it.
2 Tri Tip roasts, 1-2lbs each
1/4 cup lemon juice
1/4 cup olive oil
1 T garlic
1 T coconut aminos
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp black pepper
1 tsp oregano
1/4 tsp crushed red pepper
Rinse the roasts and pat dry with a paper towel. Whisk together remaining ingredients in a mixing bowl, then whisk well to combine. If you whisk it quickly, you will create an emulsification, causing the oil and lemon juice to thicken slightly.
Put the roasts in a gallon-sized zip top bag. Pour the marinade over the roasts, squeeze out as much air as you can, and seal tightly. Knead the bag so the roasts are completely covered with marinade. Refrigerate at least 6 hours or overnight.
Remove the roasts from the refrigerator at least 30 minutes before cooking. Preheat your oven’s broiler and line a baking sheet with foil. Grease baking sheet lightly. Alternatively, you can use a broiler pan. Arrange roasts in the center of prepared pan and discard marinade.
Set the top rack of your oven at least 4-5 inches from the heat source. Broil for 10-15 minutes, flipping with tongs every 3 minutes. As you get close to the end of the cooking time, flip every 2 minutes to prevent burning. Roast is done when internal temperature reaches 140-160, medium rare to medium well.
Remove from baking sheet to a cutting board, and cover loosely with foil. Let stand about 15 minutes before slicing against the grain.