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Meat from a truck

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Post Mon Nov 03, 2003 11:41 am
Luke medium-rare
medium-rare

Posts: 89
Location: Texas

Around here (north texas) I often get advertisements and salesmen trying to sell beef at wholesale prices. The cost is about half of what I pay at my local butcher. (I really like my local butcher by the way.) The other day I had one of these salesmen come buy and I bought a set of t-bones from him. 4lbs for $20.00. They are graded choice and three out of four have nice marbling. He wanted me to buy 40lbs. but I wasn't about to do that without first trying a smaller purchase. I am recovering from surgery right now so I haven't had a chance to cook them but the situation has brough several questions to mind...

1) Has anyone dealt with a wholeseller like this before? What were you opions of the results?
2) How do you determine the quality of frozen steak?
3) Has anyone ever bought their meat in large quantities before, what were the results?

Thanks
Live Different

Post Mon Nov 03, 2003 12:26 pm
Grand Scale BBQ Deputy
BBQ Deputy

Posts: 4272
Location: York, PA
I can't speak for Questions #1 or #2 but I have bought beef in large quantitioe before. Let me just tell you that a whole steer for 2 families is ALOT of beef!! No don't get me wrong, I love beef, Sundays in my house means Steak. But when you're dealing with bulk, you're really dealing with bulk. Other things I realized is there is a whole lot of hamburger that is generated...we're talking burgers, chili, meatloaf, chopped steak, and on and on and still going. Also there are several cuts that we just didn't use. No that they weren't good, they just weren't what we preferred or were used to cooking.
I'm a big fan of supporting the little guy. I'd suggest going to your local butcher and look into buying a whole cow (if you can get 3-4 buddies) or at least a side of beef. This also lets you get the cuts the way you prefer, thick, thin, etc. It should lower the cost as well. Beyond that your only concern is freezer space. Oh yeah if you don't have yourself a vaccum sealer yet put it on your Christmas list NOW. They are invaluable.

I'm always leary of anything from the back of a truck.
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Post Mon Nov 03, 2003 2:01 pm
Bob-BQN User avatar
well done
well done

Posts: 12904
Location: Texas
First things first - Congratulations on the new baby girl! She's beautiful.

We've purchased beef from a friend and had it processed at a butcher for a total average cost of $1.60 per pound. This was wonderful, tender meat. Far better than anything bought at the supermarket. I would stick with the butcher.

As for the truck, I wouldn't even buy fruit from a truck. We had trucks roll through the neighborhood going door-to-door. I just won't touch the stuff (personal opinion).

Post Mon Nov 03, 2003 7:25 pm
dkirn well done
well done

Posts: 388
Location: St. Louis, MO
I must agree with everyone else - I am extremely leary of anyone who has a pickup as a place of business. I fully support my butcher and his meat market (as anyone who reads my posts will tell you). I am much happier paying a few cents more to get consistancy! My butcher will not accept any meat that does not meet his standards so I do not need to buy a small amount to sample some of the meat - I know everything that he has is good. Over the coarse of 3 years I had one steak that was not as good as I was accustomed to, it was still better than what I was getting at a supermarket, not only did he refund my money but also replaced the steak and then insisted that I not pay for my order (about $75) - all for a $10 steak that was better than I would have gotten anywhere else.

Post Mon Nov 03, 2003 11:00 pm
hickory pete well done
well done

Posts: 403
One of my neighbors will only buy their meat from a delivery truck that routinely stops by their house. We had the opportunity to go over the pricing for this delivery company, and found that their prices were rather high. We prefer to shop through the local stores, and meat markets. I feel that freshness is better than buying already frozen meat. I'm not saying that it is a bad idea, because I don't know enough about it...just my preference.

Pete

Post Tue Nov 04, 2003 5:52 pm
dkirn well done
well done

Posts: 388
Location: St. Louis, MO
Something else to consider - I try to purchase only what I am going to be using in the next 3-4 days and then keep the meat in the fridge so I do not lose any flavor in freezing the meat. I have a food saver vaccum system, but I still think that meat tastes better fresh - no frozen.

Post Thu Nov 06, 2003 1:42 am
YardBurner BBQ Deputy
BBQ Deputy

Posts: 5368
Location: Damascus, Maryland
What Luke is referring to is the guy who drives by and offers to sell you meat at the "Same prices he sells to the trade". Most of the time, (Now, I'm just outside the Washington D.C, area, which is just loaded with eateries of all kinds.), this guy has shorted a delivery to a scheduled stop or two(or three) and comes around to sell off the evidence. Hence, the choice or sometimes PRIME labeling of his product. Now, I'm no virgin to this scam, having bought a hunk or two over the years. But, this was before I was aware of the ruse. Yes, the meat was very fine indeed, but what a chance I was taking if it was jerky or worse, tainted. One local butcher shop (which is also a slaughter house), has educated me about this scam and even gotten my pricing almost to the same "wholesale" level this con man was asking. (Without the guilt). If I give a few days notice as to what cuts I'm looking for, even deer (I don't have the opportunity to hunt these days), I can just call and place an order.

Don't take a chance with meat off the street (sorry about the rhyme). Our time and the special event you had planned is more expensive than the ingredients. (God help ya if you screw it up when the mother in law is eatin' with you. (shudder). Think that one will ever go away?

Stick with those you know. They back up their products with their knowledge and overhead. (They have too much to lose and are too easy to find to screw you up on purpose.) [/b]

Post Thu Nov 06, 2003 8:22 pm
dkirn well done
well done

Posts: 388
Location: St. Louis, MO
YardBurner - Thanks for the info on the scam, I always wondered about that.

Post Thu Nov 06, 2003 10:49 pm
Pierre rare
rare

Posts: 12
Location: Chicago Burbs, USA
Meat from a truck. They'd be awfully difficult to carve. :wink:

Post Fri Nov 07, 2003 8:25 am
Grand Scale BBQ Deputy
BBQ Deputy

Posts: 4272
Location: York, PA
:lol: :lol: :lol: :lol:

But if you marinate them just right...
Stick with Fords, Chevys can be a bit too tough.
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Post Fri Nov 07, 2003 8:39 am
stl-rich rare
rare

Posts: 16
Luke wrote:
The other day I had one of these salesmen come buy and I bought a set of t-bones from him. 4lbs for $20.00. They are graded choice and three out of four have nice marbling.


How were the steaks?

After eating the steaks, would you buy from that guy again?

Post Tue Dec 09, 2003 1:17 am
Luke medium-rare
medium-rare

Posts: 89
Location: Texas

The truck is back...
Actually I have now fully healed up from my throat surgery and am eating meat again. So in addition to the turkey and the pre-turkey day racks, I cooked up some of the meat I bought from the back of a truck.

I bought a couple of choice t-bones. First they came out of the package with a few signs that they had spent time cryovaced. Not necessarily bad but not pretty either. They cooked up just fine, but I have to say I don't like cooking meat that has been frozen. As for quality they were... eh. They weren't bad, but they weren't great. And steak really should be great. I paid about half as much for these steaks as I would have at my butcher and I would say that they were about half as good. I did however find a good use for them. Typically I make my steak for tacos out of flank or skirt steak. (Mmmm carne asada.) I normally wouldn't use a t-bone because it just wouldn't be cost effective. But since these steaks cost about as much as a flank or skirt steak at my buther I was willing to make a taco out of them. They were pretty good. Nice mix of tender and flavorful. Of course it helped that I had just gotten a pot of refried beans from my grandmother and the tortillas had been hand made by my greatgrandmother in Mexico and smuggled across the border. :twisted:
Live Different

Post Tue Dec 09, 2003 9:13 am
Grand Scale BBQ Deputy
BBQ Deputy

Posts: 4272
Location: York, PA
With ingredients like that how can you go wrong?
You could put shoe leather in those tacos and I bet they'd still be great.
I'm envious of your resources.
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