Kitchen Adventures || Gratitude <3
Hey guys! It’s been a couple weeks since I’ve done a kitchen adventures post! I wasn’t cooking as much over the holidays, then ya girl got taken down hard by the flu and I had NO business being around food during that. We’ve also had so many other fun things happening that my recipe posts have kind of taken a back seat, but I’m back!
Today’s recipe is really simple, but the story behind it is pretty special. So… after our anniversary party and the unveiling of the new Iron Buffalo award, we all know how buffalos are a huge part of Tim’s life. Well, he recently had a really cool opportunity to take an adventure out to Roam Ranch. Roam ranch is home to the bison, chicken, and other animals that supply Epic Provision’s line of high protein snacks and bars. If you’ve never tried their stuff, do it…
Anyway, Tim had an opportunity to go out to the ranch for a tour and to takepart in what they call the “field harvest.” This means that he got to learn about how the ranch is ethically and sustainably run through regenerative farming. He learned about how the bees, bison, chickens, and of course all the hard working people on the team, work together to create the best environment and the richest land to raise these animals.
The field harvest part of this adventure means that he got to take part in the ethical kill of a bison and help with the break-down of the animal. He and a group of folks got to help butcher the bison, clean the meat, and break downthe rest of the parts of the animal to be used for other purposes. Altogether,about 85% of this bison would be used leaving very little waste. At the end of it all, he got to bring home some of the meat. He even brought home some parts to be used as puppy chow. Bet you didn’t know Chihuahuas could get all primal 😉
It’s truly his story to tell and I’m just here for the recipe today, but maybe we can talk him into a video to chat about his experience.
One of the pieces of meat he brought home was a HUGE bison shank! The head of the bone is bigger than my fist! This hunk of meat had to be 6-7 pounds. Easily the largest piece of meat I’ve ever worked with. As I cleaned the meat and began to cut away some of the connective tissue, I was finding some hairs and dirt on the meat. Having already seen pictures of the bison this came from, I was definitely thinking of that animal, but I was also extremely honored to have the chance to prepare this piece of meat as fuel for our bodies. It was a neat feeling to know that Tim had a hand in breaking down and bringing this meat home. Although he did not shoot the animal himself, it was a perfect example of going out into the field to bring home food for his family. I was happy to be preparing it.
Not really knowing what else to do with it, we went with the slow cooker. I wanted to keep as much of the natural flavor of the meat so I really didn’t use TOO much seasoning. I went with pretty simple sides for this as well, but all together we ended up with what Tim lovingly referred to as the “Triple B” Sometimes keeping it simple is the best way to go!
Tender Slow Cooker Bison Shank
Butter, Ghee, or coconut oil for frying
Ground black pepper & sea salt
5-7 lbs of shank (obviously I used bison, but you can use beef as well) – bone in
1 medium yellow onion – sliced
8 whole garlic cloves – peeled
3 cups of bone broth (I actually used some I made from a chicken the week before – stay tuned for a bone broth recipe)
2 TBSP tomato paste
3 TBSP Italian seasoning
¼-1/2 tsp cayenne *optional for spice
Heat your butter/ghee/oil of choice over medium heat in a large frying pan. You should have enough to coat the bottom of the pan. Season the shank(s) on all sides with sea salt and freshly ground pepper and brown for 4-5 min per side.
Once you’ve browned them, put them straight into the slow cooker along with your diced onion and garlic.
Add another ½ tsp of salt to a medium sized bowl along with your Italian seasoning, tomato paste, broth, and cayenne if you’re using it. Whisk gently to combine and pour the mixture over the shank in the crock pot.
Cover and turn on low for 10-12 hours (or until falling apart tender). You can strain the brother through a mesh strainer and reserve for later use or to use as an au jus!
I served this with simple roasted beets (coated in coconut oil and wrapped in foil to roast) and roasted Brussel sprouts (coated in olive oil, sea salt, and cracked black pepper).
The flavor of the meat, particularly the cut we had, will speak for itself.
I know we don’t all have access to such amazing resources, but it was an experience that reminded me to always be mindful and to be grateful to the animals that serve to fuel our bodies. Stay tuned for a video from Tim in the member’s page soon for a recap of his visit!