Lil’ Ponderosa is a 300-acre farm located in Carlisle, Pennsylvania raising 100% grass-fed, grass-finished cattle. Owned and operated by Bob and Kate Boyce, Lil’ Ponderosa is committed to giving their cattle only the best nutrient-rich food, and never introducing growth hormones, fertilizers, pesticides, GMOs, or antibiotics. It's all natural. And not what grocery-store beef means when it claims something is "all-natural." This is actually all-natural.
The farm’s purebred Black Angus cows are given ample grazing land, and the unique blend of orchard grass, perennial ryegrass, and legumes they munch on keeps them hearty and results in beautifully marbled beef.
Lil’ Ponderosa is unique in its commitment to management-intensive grazing, a practice that requires Bob (or Uncle Bob as he’s known to friends and family) to move the herd everyday to a new pasture. Not only does this give the cows fresh grass to graze on but it also allows the previous day’s pasture to begin regenerating. The cows fatten up nicely in a fertilizer and pesticide-free environment.
Uncle Bob cares deeply about preserving the natural health of his land, and takes particular interest in planting the right mix of grasses to release fertilizing nitrogen into the soil. He holds a number of state and national awards for his land and environmental stewardship practices. His farm in Carlisle, PA has become a wildlife habitat where deer, rabbits and wild turkey run free. What better, more peaceful place could there be to raise stress-free cattle that yield delicious, tender beef?
Grass-fed, grass-finished beef is delicious, make no mistake about it. Speaking of mistakes, many people who write-off grass-fed beef make the mistake of preparing it the same as the grain-finished beef that they're so used to. At Crowd Cow, we've found more often than not, that the difference between a great grass-fed steak and a sub-par one all comes down to knowing how to cook it correctly.
At Crowd Cow, we've had the good fortune to taste a lot of grass-fed, grass-finished beef -- from different cuts and different producers. We've found that grass fed beef usually takes 25-30% less time to cook. You might be used to cooking your rib steaks 4 minutes per side, but for grass-fed beef, you'll want to only give it 3 minutes. Better yet, try sous-viding your grass-fed steaks or preparing them with a reverse-sear.
Lastly, consider a marinade or rub. These can often overwhelm more-mellow grain-finished beef, but are perfect for rounding out the flavor of grass-fed beef, and marinades in particular are helpful in keeping the meat moist, preventing it from overcooking and drying out.