We are blessed with many area farmers who supply us with pasture raised natural meat. Most do not use chemicals or hormones but stop short of “organic” certification since this is such an arduous and expensive process. The farmers market (now open only on Saturdays until December 10th) is a good place to find several local meat sellers but there are other options around.
For GOAT meat we have John Wertis’ farm:  BWW.   Doug Gruen, chef of the Blue Stone Bar and Grill has been featuring John’s goat meat in his Indonesian Style Curry which was strongly recommended by Peggy Haine in the Ithaca Times Winter Guide 2008. Call ahead at the Blue Stone Bar to see whether it’s being served as a special that evening.
We also have locally grown BISON from Glenwood Farms which can be purchased now at the Saturday Farmer’s Market or at their farm at 1084 Glenwood Heights Road. They are open Wednesdays and Fridays from 6-8 in the evening and Saturdays from 11-4. Call ahead to make sure someone is there. Their phone number is 272-7809. I made a Bison Shepherd’s Pie from Bon Appetit which was incredibly good. I am posting my adapted version of the recipe for you to try.
If you want to buy local BEEF, CHICKEN,TURKEY,GOOSE, LAMB and PORK we have Autumn's Harvest Farm in Romulus. You can contact them directly or buy some of their products through Garden Gate Delivery which sells many local products and delivers them right to your home.  Their grocery items come mostly from processors and farmers located within 25 miles of Ithaca.  For the next two weeks Marlo, from Garden Gate is waiving the $8 delivery fee so this would be a good time to check out her extensive offerings.
McDonalds Farm and Sabols are long time favorites who sell many cuts of meat at the Farmers market and continue to deliver into town through the winter. You can pre-order from McDonalds Farm and Peter will meet you at his truck at the Farmer’s Market location at Steamship landing on Saturdays. Sabol's Farm has a similar arrangement. If you call ahead to order, he will meet you at the Greenstar parking lot through the winter. Richard's number is 607-869-5896. Sabols also sells through Garden Gate if you want your meat delivered to your doorstep.
High Point Farms is located in Trumansburg and raises grass fed beef, pork and lamb and free range chickens. They sell from their farm on Tuesdays and Fridays from 3-6 and Saturdays 11-2 . They also have ground beef available in the freezer section at Shur Save in T-Burg.
The Piggery is a new addition to the Farmers Market scene. The long lines waiting to buy fresh cuts of pork and homemade sausages and pates indicate that they have a loyal following. If you're looking for a particular cut of meat or some special charcuterie I would recommend you call ahead since they tend make small batches and run out quite quickly.
For more information about Dairy, eggs, poultry and meat farmers located in the Southern Tier and the Finger Lakes visit the Local Foods website of Cooperative Extension.
It is more expensive to buy local, pasture raised meats but there are several advantages. 
  • You’re supporting our local farmers who work hard to give us great quality
  • No middle-people are involved
  • You know what you’re getting. Just visit the farms to see for yourself.
  • It’s healthier. Grass fed meat have 2-4 times the levels of Omega 3 than in grain fed animals. And you aren’t consuming unknown chemicals, hormones, and antibiotics.
  • And for me, knowing that the animals are humanely treated is particularly important.
The Braised Pork Shoulder with Pomegranate and Quince recipe that I recently tried from Bon Appétit  was a great success .  I made a few changes to keep the ingredients  local and more affordable. Below are both recipes to enjoy on a cold winter’s night. Both should be made a day or two ahead of time and reheated for ultimate flavor.
Bison Shepherd's Pie: 8 SERVINGS
Adapted from Bon Appétit magazine September 2008
meat layer
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided
  • 2 pounds ground bison meat* or ground beef
  • 2 cups chopped onions
  • 8 oz mushrooms, finely chopped
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste
  • 3 tablespoons chopped fresh thyme
  • 2 tablespoons all purpose flour
  • 2 cups low-salt chicken broth
  • 1 cup dry red wine
vegetable layer
  • 2 cups diced peeled carrots
potato topping
  • 2 pounds Yukon Gold potatoes, peeled, cut into 3/4-inch pieces
  • 1 large head of cauliflower (about 1 1/2 pounds), cored, coarsely chopped
  • 1/4 cup (1/2 stick) butter, room temperature
  • 1/4 cup milk OR ½ &½  
  • 2 1/2 cups freshly grated Parmesan cheese, divided (about 8 ounces)
  • Extra-virgin olive oil for drizzling
  • Chopped fresh Italian parsley
  • Paprika
meat layer
§         Heat 1 tablespoon oil in large pot over high heat. Add bison; sauté until browned, about 5 minutes. Using slotted spoon, transfer meat to bowl. Add 1 tablespoon oil to pot, then add onions and mushrooms. Sauté until soft, about 7 minutes. Add tomato paste; stir 2 minutes. Add thyme and flour and stir 1 minute. Add broth and wine and bring to boil. Return bison to pot. Reduce heat; simmer until mixture thickens and is reduced, about 15 minutes. Season with salt and pepper.
vegetable layer
§         Cook carrots in boiling salted water just until slightly softened, about 2 minutes. Drain. Transfer to bowl. Set aside.
potato topping
§         Cook potatoes and cauliflower in large pot of boiling salted water until tender, about 10 minutes. Drain, reserving cooking liquid. Transfer potatoes and cauliflower to processor and puree, adding reserved cooking liquid, 1/4 cup at a time, until mixture is smooth. Transfer mixture to bowl; stir in butter and milk, then 2 cups Parmesan cheese. Season potato topping to taste with salt and pepper.
Preheat oven to 400°F. Butter 15x10x2-inch glass baking dish. Spread meat mixture in dish. Top with carrots. Spread potato topping over, covering completely and swirling with knife to create peaks, if desired. Drizzle lightly with oil; sprinkle with 1/2 cup Parmesan. DO AHEAD Can be made 1 day ahead. Chill uncovered until cold, then cover and keep chilled. Let stand at room temperature 2 hours before continuing.
        Bake pie uncovered until heated through and top is lightly browned, 30- 50   minutes. Sprinkle with parsley and paprika.


Braised Pork Shoulder with Quince
Adapted from Bon Appétit recipe | October 2008
Yield: Makes 8 servings
2 teaspoons paprika
1 1/2 teaspoons coarse kosher salt
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 teaspoon ground coriander
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1/8 teaspoon ground allspice
Pinch of ground cinnamon
1 4-5 pound boneless pork shoulder (Boston butt), trimmed, tied in several places to hold shape if necessary


1 tablespoon olive oil
3 large quinces or apples (about 1 1/2 pounds total), peeled, cored, each cut into bite size chunks

2 cups chopped onions
1/2 cup chopped celery
1/2 cup finely chopped carrot
3 large garlic cloves, chopped
1 cup apple cider juice
1 cup low-salt chicken broth
2 tablespoons red currant jelly
2 small bay leaves
1 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme
2 TBS Pomegranate molasses
Stir paprika, 1 1/2 teaspoons coarse kosher salt, 1 teaspoon black pepper, coriander, ginger, allspice, and cinnamon in small bowl to blend. Spread spice mixture all over pork shoulder. Wrap in plastic and refrigerate overnight.
Preheat oven to 325°F. Heat oil in heavy large oven-proof pot over medium-high heat. Add pork shoulder and brown on all sides, about 10 minutes. Transfer pork to plate. Pour off all but 2 tablespoons drippings from pot and reduce heat to medium. Add quince to pot. Sauté until cut sides are lightly browned, 5 to 7 minutes. Using slotted spoon, transfer quince to bowl. Add onions, celery, and carrot to pot. Sauté until vegetables begin to soften, about 10 minutes. Add garlic; sauté1 minute. Add cider and chicken broth. Bring to boil, scraping up browned bits. Add red currant jelly, bay leaves, and thyme, then quince. Return pork to pot, fat side up. Cover pot with foil, then lid; place in oven.
Braise pork until very tender and thermometer inserted into center registers 165°F, basting occasionally, about 2 hours 15 minutes. Cool pork uncovered at room temperature. Chill uncovered until cold, then cover and chill at least 1 day and up to 3 days.
Preheat oven to 350°F. Transfer pork to work surface. Cut off string. Cut pork crosswise into 1/2-inch-thick slices. Overlap slices in 13x9x2-inch baking dish. Using slotted spoon, arrange vegetables and quince around pork. Boil juices in pot until thickened enough to coat spoon, about 15 minutes. Season to taste with coarse kosher salt,. Pour juices over pork. Cover and bake until heated through, about 30 -40 minutes.