Growing up in a Small Town [cue song from Paul Brandt Small Town & Big Dreams] in Northern British Columbia, we weren’t a busy family, but one who had more time to sit down and enjoy regular family meals together. We were a family of four and my father was a Canadian Beef lover so we often had beef roasts or steak on the weekends.
As a child I watched my dad grill the steaks and helped my mom cook the roast whenever I was allowed to help. It’s these memories and times spent together eating meals at the dinner table as a family that helped instill so many values in myself and remind me about the importance of taking the time to just “be” with each other at the table.
Today I have a family of my own, a family of four, and we call Calgary, Alberta our home. We take in International Homestay Students for 10 months out of the year and so we become a family of five. We enjoy introducing our students to new tastes and Canadian Beef is one of those they get introduced to early on.
When my husband and I got married in 2004 we contacted Alberta Beef about promotional items for our guests, and they sent us stickers to hand out at our wedding, that is how much we enjoy our beef.
On April 6th the Canadian Beef Centre of Excellence hosted a Media Cook off and Canadian Beef Family Dinner Event. They brought in Country Music Star Paul Brandt to perform a few songs for us during dinner and judge the media burger cook off between 3 well known local competitors. While we dined on beef sliders, ribs, tacos and more prepared by Chef Marty Carpenter, Director Canadian Beef Centre of Excellence and his team, we listened to Paul sing. It was an epic moment as I’ve been a Paul Brandt fan since I moved to Calgary 16 years ago. There weren’t many at the event who knew his songs well (or as well as me) and I may or may not have been singing quite loudly along with him during dinner. Thank goodness Periscope videos disappear.
It was an exciting evening spent with several friends in the blogging and media world. We were fortunate to hear Canadian Beef announce Paul Brandt as the spokesperson for over 67,000 ranchers in Canada. What an honour to have someone like Paul representing Canadian Beef. To learn more about what Canadian Beef looks like click on the video below.
Even though there are four of us originals in the family at any given time, we are very busy with activities and events that I attend. We make it a habit whenever we can to sit down as a family and eat our meal together before rushing off somewhere, even if we only have 15 minutes and it’s sandwiches. A little advance meal planning and shopping helps make this happen.
I am also a big fan of cook once, eat two or three times. We eat Family Style, allowing the kids to serve themselves, try one bite of everything (house rule) and clean their plate before going in for second helpings. These rules have worked well and our kids are very good eaters. More often than not I am sending them to school with leftover beef wraps, beef in pitas or even beef on a bun. This makes me a very proud mom!
We cook a lot of beef and every summer we are known for our Bakers Beef on a Bun. We host a barbecue for friends and/or family which involves about a 13 lb beef roast smoked and barbecued for several hours. It’s our way of giving back to the ones who matter most and bringing everyone together to enjoy a family style meal.
With beef being a staple in our family, we wanted to share a few of our favourite recipes and offer some inspiration for new family meals.
Get the family together at the table with a fondue. We’ve been fondueing as a couple for as long as we’ve been together (14 years) and have tried many variations over the years. We prefer to dip our meat into broth fondues and one of our favourite is Teriyaki Beef Fondue
We often make burgers but whenever we are camping we mix up some Pizza Burgers and freeze them individually (raw) a couple days before we go. We pack the burgers in our cooler with ice and usually cook them the first night or second when they have defrosted. The kids request these regularly.
Change up your burger routine and try these Alberta Burgers. We eat them with pitas and they are delicious.
Meat on a Stick is a family favourite here. Our Beef Keftas are popular and fun to eat!
Whip up this Taco Pasta in 30 minutes or less for those busy nights where you have to eat and run.
Did you know Canada is the 8th largest exporter of beef in the world? Here’s a few more interesting facts about Canadian Beef:
- Wide open spaces for cattle to graze: an environment that’s been conducive to grazing herds since time began
- Cooler climates that are like a natural meat locker: much less stressful on cows than any hot-weather ranchland
- A heritage of hardworking ranching and farming families that are part of the nation’s culture
- Cattle are fed high energy grains which lowers the environmental footprint of finishing cattle
- The average beef cow herd size in Canada is 63
- Almost 25,000 Canadian farmers and ranchers are under the age of 35
- Canadians enjoy around 930k tonnes of beef a year
Disclosure – This post is part of the #makeitCDNbeef influencer program. All thoughts and opinions on this blog are my own. Beef facts provided by Canadian Beef.