As part of Hubby’s job, he gets meat. I love that…he loves that. We all love that. What a joy to get groceries and not to have to hit up the meat section. We do buy a little…sandwich meat, pork loin on sale, chicken and fish. We are really so spoiled because of this as the meat is the best cuts and the most flavorful.
Back when the used to milk cows at the farm where Hubby works we got lots of hamburger. Occasionally a cow would have complications with birth that she couldn’t recover from, slip and break a leg or wouldn’t come with calf. Typically prices for these cows isn’t the best. Often Hubby’s boss would take these to the locker and we’d be blessed with lots and lots of hamburger. Sometimes we’d have an entire, no joke, large freezer full of hamburger. Often we’d get more hamburger before we’d use up what we’d have. It was one of the those blessing/curse situations. It was a blessing we had all the hamburger we could want but a bit of a curse as it was all we had..and in those days, all we could afford.
I learned to make so many different things with hamburger. We honestly had some type of dish with hamburger, or straight up hamburgers for days on end. I got VERY talented in making dishes with hamburger. Although I felt frustrated with only hamburger as the cook, I don’t think my family felt frustrated with all the hamburger related meals.
In fact, a funny thing happened when Kelli went to college…first off, in all those hamburger dishes I fed her, none were hamburger helper. With seven hungry mouths to feed it was cheaper to cook completely from scratch than to buy hamburger helper. Second, Kelli had never bought hamburger in town. All of my kids thought we ate hamburger because we were cheap and it was a cheap meat.
Anyway, one day after getting teased by girls on her dorm floor that Kelli decided she would get hamburger and a box of hamburger helper and made herself some. First off she couldn’t believe that she had to pay that much for hamburger. Second she couldn’t believe that she had to drain the hamburger. (what we butcher was always very lean) and third…mom’s homemade hamburger stroganoff tasted much better than the box.
Things have changed since they quit milking cows. They raise beef steers now. There aren’t many that end up in the locker because of injury so now, we get a whole beef including steaks, liver, roasts and the like. The portion of steaks compared to hamburger is LARGELY different than what we were used too. This year, we ran out of hamburger in August. UGH….We still had roasts and steaks but no hamburger. It’s been a sad few month for me. Sure I could go buy some in town but it’s hard to do that when there is meat in the freezer.
Besides, Hubby and I both agreed that we really needed to eat down what was there so that we’d have the old meat used up.
I can’t tell you how happy I was when the meat came….
I had hamburger again!!
Hamburger allows me to cook ahead and I love that. Often I’ll make a lazagna and another hotdish on Sunday of busy weeks and simply pop them in the oven later in the week. It’s harder to do that with steak….don’t get me wrong, I am thankful for and love steak too it’s just that I love all things hamburger. Those early years of marriage when hamburger was all we had in the freezer really set me on what and how I like to cook.
We are so blessed that meat is part of Hubby’s wage package. Going to the supermarket and buying this much meat would be REALLY hard.
I’m off to go take some hamburger out of the freezer. I think hamburger gravy over mashed potatoes sounds just about perfect.