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Review: Lave Lake Lamb
Before I started eating clean (and prior to viewing Food, Inc.), I thought that meat was meat. I didn’t concern myself with where or how the animal lived, what it ate, or its general health. I also didn’t think much about the taste variance in meat. Sure, I knew the $60 steak at Ruth’s Chris would taste better than the $7.99/lb. slab at my local grocery store, but for everyday eating, it didn’t register on my “care about it” list. I looked for the largest valu-pak with the lowest price, and I tossed it into my cart.
All of that has changed.
I now care fervently about the animals I eat because they make me strong and healthy and happy. I’m very grateful to the cows, pigs, chickens, sheep, and sea creatures that live and give their lives so I can thrive. I’m not sentimental about it, but I do like to acknowledge that the animals I eat were once walking around, eating, too… and I honor them in fulfilling their purpose when I savor the meals I make with them.
I’m very grateful to the friendly folks at Lava Lake Lamb for sending me a sample pack of meat – because it was so tasty, and I feel so good about the company, I’m going to be buying my lamb from Lava Lake from now on. [Full disclosure: Lava Lake gave me a gift of meat for free so I could try it; now I’m hooked!]
All of the lamb from Lava Lake is 100% grass-fed. The sheep are never corraled into feed lots, and they’re free from hormone doses, antibiotics, herbicides, and insecticides. The sheep “range freely over nearly one million acres of rangeland, raised with care by seasoned shepherds in much the same way they have been raised for centuries. They graze on the natural bounty of a vast and biologically diverse landscape.” That produces meat that is richer in Omega-3 fatty acids, Vitamin E, and beta-carotene.
This is the tenderest, sweetest lamb I’ve ever eaten. (And I’ve eaten a lot of lamb.)
The first Lava Lakes cut we tried was the lamb shoulder, and we served it to a group of people with discriminating palates: our dinner party of paleo food and lifestyle luminaries (luminaries!) after PaleoFX, including Julie and Charles of Paleo Comfort Foods, Bill and Hayley of Make It Paleo, Nom Nom Paleo, Fitbomb, Andy Deas, and Melissa and Dallas from Whole9. These people know what Good Food tastes like, and the lamb got rave reviews.
I made my Deconstructed Gyro Salad, and it was stunningly good. Fall-apart tender, but not greasy. The meat was sweet under the layer of gyro seasonings. Mmmms and yummms all around. Here’s a photo of the lamb that I shamelessly stole from Nom Nom Paleo and Fitbomb because I was too busy cooking and serving to take pics of my own:
Since then, I’ve made two recipes with the ground lamb, and my review is the same: flavorful with enough fat to be succulent but not greasy. That is no mean feat and is a direct result of the compassionate, healthful way these animals are raised. I was thrilled with the flavor of the lamb in the Paleo Stuffed Grape Leaves — and the Merguez Meatballs didn’t drip and burn in the oven the way conventionally-raised ground lamb often does. The flavor of the lamb is mild, not at all “muttony,” while still standing up proudly and saying “Baaaaa!” (Translation: “I’m lamb, thank you very much.”)
Get Your Own Lava Lake Lamb
In addition to the meats I tried, Lava Lake offers leg, shanks, chops, sausages, kebab meat, and ribs. Even better, the company offers special packages with flat rate shipping — there’s even a Paleo Package! The Lamb Club option allows you to schedule deliveries so you never run out! And all orders over $200 receive free shipping. Right now, take advantage of Lava Lake’s Easter Specials: Free shipping on Easter packages and 20% off leg of lamb when you buy two.