5 ways to safely eat raw meat [30 Days in the Raw, Day 4]
When I tell folks I’m eating raw for 30 Days the first response is just a slight “oh, one of your crazy food experiments again.” But when I explain that this is not raw vegan, but what is termed “raw primal” and includes raw eggs, dairy, fish, AND meat, I get some serious raised eye brows. Some are polite enough just to say, “how interesting…” while others go straight to the point “isn’t it dangerous to eat raw meat?”
Short answer: it depends. We all know we’re taking a certain amount of risk every time we order a plate of sushi. We also know (or hope) that the restaurant took certain precautions to make the experience as safe as possible.
Here are 5 ways to eat raw meat safely:
1) Ensure you’re eating high quality, meat from pastured animals.
This is by far the most important of the five, and if this is all you do, it’s going to go a long way. Max Kane spoke of this in his interview yesterday. Food safety starts with the animal: how it was raised, what it ate, how healthy it was.
For these 30 days, any raw meat we eat is exclusively coming from trusted sources of exceptionally healthy 100% grass fed cows or bison. Our main source is J&J’s Grasfed Beef.
To find your closest farmer, check out the amazing free service FarmMatch.com to find exactly what meat you’re looking for.
This same principle goes for anything you eat raw: dairy, fish, eggs, etc. Quality is of paramount importance.
2) Freeze the meat for 14 days
Freezing any meat or fish for 14 days kills all pathogens. It’s that simple. This is how sushi restaurants do it. First: highest possible quality fish; second: frozen for 14 days.
3) Once the meat thaws, keep it very cold and eat immediately
You wouldn’t take home sushi, keep it on your counter for a few hours and then eat it. You likewise wouldn’t take home sushi, put it in the fridge for several days and then eat it. Exact same thing goes for raw meat. Fresh is best.
4) Citrus sear it
Have you ever eaten ceviche? That is raw fish soaked in lemon or lime overnight in the refrigerator to “sear” the fish – killing any potential pathogens from the surface of the fish. This is a common way to eat raw chicken. Now, I have to confess – I’m not a huge chicken fan at the best of times, and the idea of raw chicken, even seared, makes me a bit squeamish. I’m going to listen to my gut on this one, but it’s certainly something that is commonly done.
5) Ferment it
Say what? Yup, you can ferment meat, fish, and dairy. Dairy is the obvious one: yogurt, kefir, cheese, etc. But fish and meat? Absolutely! Gravlax, as one example, is fermented salmon and definitely on our recipe list for this month. We’ll be playing around with this and will share our experience as we dive into it.
Any tips you use to safely consume raw meat? What about favorite recipes? Please share in the comments below.
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