Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Happy Meat

So, after the stress of planning; picking up the enormous weight of a full cow, a pig and a half, and 12 chickens all packed in boxes (slightly alarming for our van, with its already lousy shocks); and driving to and from Lancaster on a snowy day (worried on the way back that an accident would endanger Abigail with all the frozen meat in the car) . . . we're done!  The local meat is in the freezer (or picked up by participating families), the money is mostly in, and we're just getting ready for some roasts and sausage meals.  Last night was actually the Lancaster classic (at least in my house) of Sausage and Rice with butter beans on the side (the southern version of lima beans).  Tonight is beef chuck roast with noodles, pumpkin (with brown sugar and butter?), salad, and the leftover butter beans.  I'll include the recipes for anyone else who just filled a freezer with meat--they're two of the easiest things I know to make.  :)
Sausage and Rice (Lancaster style)

Saute the sausage (about a pound) on medium-low heat until it's cooked through.  Add two quarts of frozen/canned diced or stewed tomatoes.  (To sneak greens into the meal, add blended kale, which will change the appearance, but not the taste.)  Before serving, mix a few tablespoons of corn starch into a small dish with a few tablespoons of water or white wine.  Mix thoroughly, then pour it into the simmering sausage tomato dish.  That will thicken the tomato into a "sauce."  Serve over rice.
I got that recipe from my mom.  This next recipe, for a spice rub, I got out of a magazine and I keep a mix of it in a drawer with the recipe taped to the bottom (thank goodness for that, considering that I'd otherwise have no idea what was in it).

Davis Dry Rub
(that's really what it was called in the magazine)

To make the mix (which you can use multiple times, it stores well), get a bowl and add:
1/2 c paprika
1/3 c ground black pepper
1/4 c salt
1/4 c chili powder
1/4 c ground cumin
1/4 c packed brown sugar
3 T granulated sugar
2 T cayenne pepper

There's no way I made that much when I mixed it up, I just used the amounts to know the balance of ingredients.  I probably made about a quarter of that and it lasted a few years (we don't do that many roasts).  But I use it every time I make a roast and we really like it. 
Wash the meat, dust both sides of the roast with the rub, and put it in the crockpot or roasting pan--with carrots, potatoes, and onions if you prefer.  Easy schmeasy!

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