These lamb riblets!–Plump, juicy, deeply . . . lamby. I did almost nothing to them–seared them, made a mirepoix and braised them over it, and ate them with wild rice. Melt-in-your-mouth delicious.
My riblets were once part of a lamb grazing on the “dry land hills and pastures of Lorena Butte” on the Lefever Holbrook Ranch across the mountains in Goldendale. Paulette Lefever sent me this photo; maybe you can taste that sunset in her meats. I bought the little fellow from her last October (after his one bad day, of course), and she and her 11-year-old son Conor delivered him right to my kitchen. (You’ll hear more about Conor; I gather that the hog operation is his, and I’ll be getting several pork products from him soon.)
They do the slaughtering on the ranch and use Buxton’s Meat Co., in Sandy, Oregon, for the butchering; what actually arrived on my kitchen counter (lugged up my many front steps by Conor himself) was a big cooler full of well-labeled packages for my freezer.
The ranch is a member of the Gorge Grown Food Network, a nonprofit that “connects local people to local foods and local farmers to local markets.” I heard about Paulette’s wonderful products from a friend in my book club–haphazard! It’s great to know that they have an organization devoted to getting the word out.