Agriculture Links

Have you checked out our links page? We’ve included some great resources for finding out more about how cattle are raised, the health benefits and nutritional aspects of beef, new recipes for preparing beef and some fun facts about the agriculture industry.

We know consumers have a lot of questions these days about where their food comes from. We cattlewomen are still learning and also have questions about agriculture. Bottomline is as agriculturists, we have a strong tie to the land and animals in our care. Providing safe and nutritious food is our number one priority. We’re feeding our families too! Please know if you have any questions about your food or how it’s produced, you can reach out and ask. We’d love to hear from you!


Check out these other websites for more information on cattle and beef.

Explorebeef Explore Beef ~

Beef For Dinner Logo Beef. It’s What’s for Dinner. ~

Facts About Beef logo Facts About BEEF ~


Animal Smart ~


Black ICA Logo2 Idaho Cattle Association ~

Idaho Beef Council Logo JPG Idaho Beef Council ~

Beef Counts Logo-final--1-12-10 Beef Counts ~


Some Blogs We Like

Beef Matters

The Idaho Rancher’s Wife

Feedyard Foodie

Mom at the Meat Counter

Categories: Beef, Blogging, Cattle

Easy Beef Stew: Year of Beef

It’s been a little, or actually, a lot busy around here and I was so thankful for some beef in my freezer and my dutch oven the other day as I was able to prepare an easy and delicious Tex Mex-inspired beef stew for my family. I’m usually pretty good about meal planning for the week, but last Monday I found myself working at the computer first thing in the morning and didn’t think about dinner until lunchtime. As I was prepping lunch, it dawned on me I better also get a jump start on dinner! We had a 4-H meeting with our three oldest children each giving oral presentations that night and had to be out the door by a certain time. We would also get home just in time to get ready for bed and school the next day, so dinner needed to be eaten before we left. I pulled a package of Beef Stew meat from the freezer because it can be used in a variety of ways. Unlike a frozen roast or steaks that would have taken more planning time to use, stew meat can make a meal come together quicker.




Braising is searing meat on a high temperature then finishing it in a covered pot set at lower temperature with a variable amount of liquid.

Meat for stewing should be lean and can be less tender because we’re going to use braising to create the tenderness. Cuts from the chuck or round are great for stew meat. You can buy it precut at the store or as a larger roast that you cut into chunks yourself. I appreciate that our butcher precuts bite-size chunks into packages for us. It’s usually the scraps after steaks and roasts are cut. Stew meat can be a more affordable cut that still creates a delicious and hearty dish.

I pulled the package, probably about 1 1/2 pounds out of my freezer and defrosted it in the microwave so it broke apart easily. Normally when I’m planning ahead I defrost meat in the refrigerator the day before I cook it. Safe cooking tip: Never thaw meat on the countertop.

I put a little canola oil (around 1-1 1/2 TB)  in a heavy stock pot and browned the pieces, making sure not to crowd them. I wanted them good and brown. As you can see there were lots of bits and pieces stuck to the bottom. After the meat was finished cooking, I added a can of stewed tomatoes and about a can and a half of water. Stirring the liquid helps deglaze the pan and gets all those yummy bits off the bottom. The acid in the tomatoes also help tenderize the meat. I also added in seasonings, including a tsp. of beef bouillion, 1 TB. of taco seasoning, some black pepper, cumin and minced Easy Beef Stewgarlic. This is where you can get creative—add seasonings your family enjoys. I also added one chopped chipotle pepper in adobe sauce. It adds some heat and smokiness. Smoked paprika is another option to add flavor.

I set my temperature to low, which on my stove maintained a low boil/high simmer, then I checked the pot about every hour to see how the meat was tenderizing and if I needed to add additional liquid (I didn’t). It simmered about 3 hours. This braising method helps break down the meat so it pulls apart and is super tender. About 30-45 minutes before I wanted to serve it, I added chopped green bell pepper and chopped onion. I also added a cup of frozen corn and a can of black beans (rinsed). I cooked the stew until the veggies were tender, but still had a little bite to them. I topped the stew with chopped fresh cilantro. Other optional toppings could include shredded cheese, crispy corn tortilla strips, plain Greek yogurt or sour cream. Or you can leave it plain as it has plenty of flavor.

Easy Tex-Mex Beef Stew
1-2 pounds stew meat (chuck or round cut into cubes)
1-2 cans stewed tomatoes plus 1-2 cans of water
1-2 tsp. of beef bouillion
1 TB. taco seasoning
Other seasonings to taste (ie. salt, pepper, garlic, smoked paprika, chipotle pepper)
Green or other bell peppers
Medium onion
1 cup frozen corn or 1 can corn
1 can black beans (drained and rinsed)

*If you want to use this in your slow cooker, you can brown the meat in a skillet, deglaze pan with some water or brother, then add it to the slow cooker with the seasonings and veggies. Cook on low heat 6-8 hours or high 4-6 hours.

This Beef Stew is super easy because you can take the meat in different flavor directions. I went with more Tex-Mex Seasonings because I had more of them on hand, but you could easily do a traditional stew with potatoes, carrots and celery or instead add Italian herbs and spices. Don’t be afraid to get creative!

taggingAngusbabycalf blackAngusnewborncalf Herefordcowandcalf

In addition to a full week of kid activities, it’s calving season on the ranch. Lots of new babies are hitting the ground every day and it’s fun to have pastures full of cows and calves.

I’m sure many of you have busy weeknights also, but still want to get a great tasting and healthy meal on the table for your family. Don’t be afraid to keep a package or two of stew meat in your freezer because this Easy Beef Stew is a great option for a weeknight family dinner.

~ M

Maggie and her husband raise their four children and registered cattle on his family’s southwest Idaho ranch. As a family, they enjoy sports, showing cattle, 4-H, church and other activities when not working on the ranch. She likes to experiment with recipes in the kitchen, shares her love of sweets through baking with her children and has been known to start a DIY project every now and then. Sometimes she actually finishes one.



Categories: Beef, Blogging, Cattle, Idaho Cattlewomen, Ranch Life

Slow Cooker Mongolian Beef: Year of Beef

Woohooo! Our first Year of Beef recipe in what seems like forever! Unfortunately, the past couple weeks around here have been a bit crazy, so cooking and writing got put on the back burner (see what I did there?). For the first few days of last week, I was in Boise for board meetings with ICA. They always say “if you don’t use it, ya lose it”, and boy are they right. After three years of not being in an office, sitting in one spot for that long was quite the challenge. I’m pretty sure all my board member counterparts probably refer to me as “Squirmy Sally”! I also spent the three following days in Reno, for the AgChat Foundation’s Western Regional Agvocacy Conference. This is the fourth time I’ve been to an AgChat event, and I definitely recommend all my fellow agriculture friends attend a future event.

As much as I loved getting dressed up every day (something that doesn’t happen much on the ranch), and getting involved in some of my industry’s most important aspects, it sure does feel good to be home. I’m now officially back in the saddle, and ready to whip up some delicious recipes! This week’s recipe was emailed to me by fellow Idaho Cattlewoman, Trish. She and her family ranch in Ellis, Idaho—you might remember seeing her featured as one of our Women in Ag—last November.

During my time in Reno, a fellow planning committee member gave me a box of California-grown products, which included a bag of Lundberg Family Farms Brown Basmati Rice. No Mongolian meal is complete without rice, so I figured this would be the perfect opportunity to try it out.


2 1/2 lbs. Brisket, Round Steak, or Flank Steak

¼ c. Cornstarch

1 Tbs. minced garlic

1 Tbs. ground ginger

3/4 c. brown sugar

3/4 c. soy sauce

3/4 c. water

2 Tbs. Siracha sauce

2 Tbs. olive oil


Raw-Brisket-Whole-Map-3First things first, take your meat and slice it thinly, across the grain. Don’t know what that is? Meat is made up of long muscle fibers that are laid out parallel to one another. In some muscles, like the loin (think New York strip steak, Ribeye, etc.), that grain is very fine. Meaning, the muscle fiber bundles are thin enough that they don’t form a significant grain. Cuts from these muscles are going to be very tender, no matter how you slice them.

Cuts from harder-working muscles (think about the Brisket or Round areas from the diagram) are going to have thicker muscle fiber bundles, with a noticeable grain. If you slice WITH the grain, you’ll end up with pieces of meat that are difficult to chew, aka not tender. But if you slice against the grain, you’ll be breaking those muscle fibers into smaller sections, which helps to add that tender aspect we all love. In the Brisket I used, you can see just how visible these muscle fiber bundles are.Beef Brisket

Next you’re going to put your meat in a gallon-sized bag, add the ¼ c. cornstarch and shake until the meat is covered. You can set aside this bag aside while you add the rest of the ingredients into your slow cooker. Once you’ve got everything in, finish off by adding your meat.Mongolian Beef

Your cooking options are setting your slow cooker on High for 2-3 hours, or setting it on Low for 5-6 hours. As mentioned earlier, I paired this meal with a side of rice; a move that I definitely recommend! I actually added about two tablespoons of my slow cooker mixture to my water/rice combo before cooking, and it really helped to give it that extra little bit of flavor.

This shot was my “before”…crockpot

And here’s my after!


Categories: Beef, Idaho Cattlewomen, Recipes

Dinner for Two: Year of Beef

Ahhhhh, the weekend of love. While Valentine’s Day is my least favorite holiday (for the sheer reason that it often gets people feeling left out), I still feel inclined to celebrate with my fellow cattlewomen!

Originally I was planning on cooking up a “V Day Filet” this week, specifically for those of us who would rather spend the evening at home, or don’t have the time to make reservations somewhere. As it turns out, I couldn’t even reserve a day to make this meal in my own home…every time I attempted we either had a heifer calving or had plans that required sack lunches. Case in point on why reservations don’t really work for us Jarvis’!

Instead, I’m going to throw it back to a few of my favorite ICW recipes, cooked by none other than the wonderful Maggie Malson. This Grilled Skirt Steak is a super easy recipe that can be paired with a variety of sides! And if your “sweetie” isn’t sweet enough, I suggest making this Rustic Shortbread Apple Pie for dessert. It’s sure to brighten the day of whoever might be the apple of your eye.

PicMonkey Collage

Happy Valentine’s Day weekend, from our ranch to yours!

Categories: Beef, Recipes

Steak Bruschetta: Year of Beef

I know this week’s Year of Beef installment was supposed to feature a Blade Roast, but in honor of Sunday’s big game I decided to switch things up a bit. I’ll be saving the roast for a later date, and turning this week’s focus on my ALL TIME favorite beef appetizer, the Steak Bruschetta! The first time I had these was last year at an Idaho Cattlewoman meeting, and I’ve been in love ever since. Megan Satterwhite (Idaho Cattlewoman President) brought these to Sun Valley, and they were a hit! So good, in fact, that a month later I made these and took them to my parent’s house on Christmas Eve!

The original recipe calls for Flank Steak, but if you notice my pictures, that’s not what I used. Unfortunately I couldn’t get one thawed out in time, so I took the liberty of heading to the meat case of our local grocery store. beefdiagramThere wasn’t any Flank Steak available, but there was a great selection of Carne Asada. Carne Asada is a thin beef steak that’s usually cut from a flank, skirt or flap steak, which is why I felt confident in my choice. Flank steak comes from the Flank area, Skirt comes from the Plate area, and Flap comes from the Bottom Sirloin. As you can see, all of those cuts come from close to the same abdominal area, which is why they’re pretty interchangeable in this recipe.

I hope you all have a great Super Bowl Sunday, may the best team win!

Ingredients: (Hang tight on measurements, I’ll go into detail on those in just a bit!)

Flank Steak



Blue Cheese (slices are easiest, but crumbles work just fine)

Measurements: I suggest making these based on sheet quantity. One baking sheet worth, two baking sheets worth…you get the picture! I used an 18”x13” baking sheet, and could have easily fit 25 bruschetta bites on my sheet, without being too crowded (and I had the makings for that many as well). I used 1 pound of Carne Asada, ½ of an extra-long baguette, and one entire large onion. One block of blue cheese would easily cover your bruschetta bites, and leave you with extra as well. On Christmas Eve we made one sheet worth of bruschetta (along with other appetizers) for four people, and didn’t have any leftover—so you can use that as your scale for however many you think you’ll need.

Options: The options/substitutions on this recipe are almost endless. As mentioned above, Flank Steak, Carne Asada, Skirt Steak or Flap Steak are all similar, and can be utilized in this recipe. The original recipe calls for blue cheese; however, Mr. Jarvis isn’t a very big BC fan, so instead I put Feta on his. Gorgonzola would also work, as would thinly sliced smoked Gouda. I’m an onion lover, but I know there are those out there who aren’t. Although my heart breaks at the thought of no onion, taking it away would still leave you with a flavor-full bruschetta bite (and you’ll notice I also made a row of those for Mr. J). If you’re cooking for a crowd and are unsure of their preferences, I’d go ahead and make a row of each—that way nobody gets left out!

Directions: Now, on to the fun part! First, I sliced my onions and started sautéing those up until they were tender.onions_steakbruschetta I also took this time to line my baking sheet with tin foil, making for easy clean up! While the onions cooking, I turned the Traeger up to high, and waited for it to heat up. My onions were done as soon as it was time to put the meat on, which worked out perfectly. While the meat cooked, I got busy slicing up my baguette into pieces approximately ½ inch thick. My favorite baguettes come from the Costco bakery, and can usually be found next to the bagels.

carneasada_steakbruschettaI cooked my meat for about 3 minutes per side. Personally, I don’t like to get my meat too done, because I know it’ll cook even more after everything is assembled and in the oven. After my meat was cooked enough to be considered as rare, I brought it inside and sliced it into 1-2” sections, or whatever size will fit nicely on your baguette.

The assembly for these bites is unbelievably easy!

Step 1) Grab a slice of baguette;

Step 2) Grab a slice of meat, and add that to your baguette slice;

Step 3) Top steak with cheese;

Step 4) Add onion, and set the bite on your baking sheet!

_steakbruschettaThese go in a 350 degree oven for about 10-15 minutes, or until the cheese is melted. (If you’re going to use Feta, be aware that it’s not going to melt like blue cheese does…so 10 minutes should work just fine.) This recipe is perfect if you like making stuff ahead of time (or the night before), that way all you have to do is assemble the parts and throw your pan(s) into the oven. I hope you enjoy!

And now for a little extra fun…the winners of our “Make Mine Beef” giveaway are:MakeMineBeefWinnerYou can send us an email (info(at)idahocattlewomen(dot)org) to claim your prize!

Categories: Beef, Idaho Cattlewomen, Recipes