Vegetarians beware! We're talking about meat here!
Last night my honey prepared some amazing Elk steaks on our small charcoal grill. I love elk, more than any other red meat, but it is a rare treat for me.
It's been a long time since my Father hunted, and I was twelve the last time he brought one home, already butchered and wrapped, for our deep freeze. Maybe I love elk so much because that was a great time in my life. The 'Last Elk' was eaten literally the night before our 2000 mile move to New England, as we couldn't ship any food with us. One last barbeque with friends...and I cried as I ate the last Elk burger I thought I'd ever eat.
I was terribly sad to be leaving the mountainous regions, knowing we'd be moving far, far away from the Elk. My Dad tried to console me by telling me that the deer were plentiful where we were going, but I just said, "Pffft. Deer. That's not Elk!" Just try reasoning with a 12 year old who feels entitiled to great wild game. I'm sure I pouted and snarked over the two week roadtrip. My parents were, and still are, very patient and tolerant people. I still wonder how they put up with me through my Elk withdrawals.
Upon our arrival to the coast, I discovered a whole new wild creature that was wonderful in it's own right: LOBSTER. And now I crave that, being over 1000 miles from an ocean. And of course it's suuuper expensive here. But I digress...
Now that I'm back in the mountains, I can, presumably, eat Elk any time I want. It's unbelievably expensive to buy, and as much as I'd love to be THAT much more self-sufficient, I just can't pull the trigger on a rifle during a hunt. So I bartered for this meat, with purslane from my own garden. That I can do, and happily. Purslane sells for as much as $9 a pound at those high-end health/organic food stores, which is a little less than Elk per pound, but I'm happy to make up the difference.
Last nights' feast seemed small, but I'm still full the next morning. I've eaten plenty of cow burgers and steaks, but felt hungry again within hours. So, here's to super lean meat, with no fillers, chemicals, antibiotics, steroids or slaughterhouse handling! I like to think this elk had a much happier, healther life than cows raised for meat, and maybe I could taste the happiness, and that has been what has kept me sated so long. Or maybe it's my own happiness keeping me full.
Now if only I could find someone who'd trade purslane for live lobsters...