Grass-Fed “Smash” Burgers with Cornichon Sauce

These burgers are an upscale take on an American classic – the thin griddle burger.  Here we’ve upgraded it with top quality grass-fed beef, a cornichon pickle “special sauce” and better cheddar.  Enjoy!
Drink Pairing: Left Bank Bordeaux Wine
Servings: 8-10 (depending on patty size)
2# Ground Grass-Fed Angus Beef
8-10 Burger Buns
Romaine Lettuce Leaves
1 Onion
2 Large Beefsteak Tomatoes
8-10 Cheese Slices (we recommend Cheddar)
¼ C Mayonnaise
¼ C chopped Cornichon Pickles
1 t Dijon Mustard
1 T Butter
1 T Olive Oil
Lemon Juice
Salt & Pepper

  1. Thinly slice the onion. Thickly slice the tomatoes into 8-10 slices.

  3. Toast each bun in a buttered pan.

  5. Get a wide pan hot over medium-low heat. Add the butter and olive oil.  Once the butter has melted add the onion slices and salt, stirring to coat them with the butter and oil mixture.

  7. Saute the onions for five minutes, then add a quarter cup of water and cover the pan. Let them simmer for 15-20 minutes, until soft.

  9. Remove the lid, and continue to cook for about 20 more minutes, stirring occasionally, until the onions are a deep caramel brown.

  11. Mix the chopped cornichons with the Dijon mustard and mayonnaise. Add salt, pepper, and lemon juice to taste.

  13. Form the beef into 8-10 very thin patties and season each liberally with salt.

  15. Sear the burgers on both sides in a very hot pan or griddle until they develop a well-browned crust. Top them with the cheese after flipping them, to give it time to melt.

  17. Spread each bun with the cornichon sauce. Add a burger patty, then top it with lettuce and a tomato slice.



Moroccan-Style Roasted Merino Lamb

Simple, yet incredibly delicious, this dish showcases merino’s versatility as a roast.
6# Boneless Merino Lamb Shoulder
1 jar Villa Jerada Harissa
1 C Mixed Parsley, Dill & Cilantro Leaves
1 C Full Fat Greek Yogurt
1 Garlic Clove
Pita Bread and/or Lettuce Leaves
Salt & Pepper

  1. Optional: Cut the lamb shoulder into smaller roasts if desired.

  3. Use butcher’s twine to tie the roast(s) to pull the meat into a more uniform shape for more consistent roasting.

  5. Rub the roast(s) on all sides with the harissa paste until evenly coated. Refrigerate them for several hours, ideally overnight.

  7. Remove the roasts from the fridge and let them come to room temperature.

  9. Preheat your oven to 325 degrees.

  11. Pour two cups of water into a large roasting pan. Add the lamb roasts & loosely cover the filled pan with aluminum foil.  Roast the lamb for 2 ½ hours, then remove the foil & continue to roast until the meat is well browned & tender (ours took an additional hour).

  13. While the lamb is roasting, finely chop the garlic & herbs. Stir them into the yogurt & add salt, pepper and lemon juice to taste.  Refrigerate the yogurt sauce until you’re ready to serve.

  15. Remove the lamb from the oven and let it rest, loosely covered, for 20 minutes.

  17. Pull or cut the merino into large chunks. Serve as chunks or further pulled into shreds on the pita or lettuce with the yogurt sauce.



Grass-Fed Beef & Vegetable Strip Salad

Rather than including lettuce, this salad involves using a mandoline and a peeler to finely shave/slice asparagus, fennel & carrot, giving the salad a unique texture.
Servings: 4-6
1# Grass-Fed Beef Tenderloin
¼ Red Onion
½ bunch Asparagus
1 Carrot
¼ Small Fennel bulb
3 T Chopped Chervil
Juice of a half lemon
Red Wine Vinegar
Plus: Your choice of dressing (we recommend something creamy)

  1. Roast or sous vide the tenderloin to your desired level of doneness, then chill it completely.

  3. Cut the core out of the red onion and thinly slice it. Put the slices in a small bowl and cover them with red wine vinegar with a little salt.

  5. Use a peeler to peel the carrot and asparagus stalks into thin strips. Reserve the asparagus tips for a garnish.

  7. Use a mandoline to thinly slice the fennel bulb.

  9. Toss the carrot, fennel and asparagus strips in a bowl with a pinch of salt, the chervil, extra virgin olive oil, and the lemon juice.

  11. Cube the tenderloin into bite sized pieces.

  13. Remove the onion from the vinegar mixture with a slotted spoon and add it to the veggies.

  15. Serve the vegetable mixture with the cubed tenderloin and your dressing of choice, garnished with the asparagus tips.



Rack of Venison with Roasted Beets & Horseradish  

This elegant dish would be perfectly at home on the menu of a fine dining restaurant, but is also easy to make at home.  Here’s how:
Ingredients:                                       Servings: 4
1 Frenched Venison Rack
8 crushed Juniper Berries
2 sprigs of Rosemary
1 t Salt
¼ t Freshly Ground Pepper
Roasted Beets:
4 Medium Beets
1 T High Heat Oil
1 C Red Wine
1 C Beef, Chicken or Vegetable Stock
2 t Honey
1 Onion
2 + 2 T Red Wine Vinegar
Pinch or two of Salt
Horseradish Cream:
3.5 fl oz Crème Fraîche
2 t Prepared Horseradish
1/8 t Salt
1 t Dijon Mustard
1 t Sugar
3-4 grinds of Fresh Pepper

  1. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.

  3. Use a spice grinder or bladed coffee grinder to grind the juniper berries, teaspoon of salt, black pepper and rosemary together. Split the resulting powder in half.

  5. Roast the Beets: Cut the onion into medium dice. Peel the beets & cut them into half-inch wedges.  Heat the oil in an oven-safe frying pan over medium-high heat.  Saute the onion in the oil until soft and a golden color, then add one half of the rosemary spice blend.
    Add the wine, honey, two tablespoons of the red wine vinegar, and stock.  Stir to combine, then add the beets.  Bring the liquid to a boil, cover the pan, and move it to the oven to braise for 40 minutes.

  7. While the beets braise, rub the meat on the rack with the remaining spice mixture. Mix together the horseradish cream ingredients.

  9. After the beets have cooked for 40 minutes, remove their lid, stir, and continue to cook (lid off) for 20 more minutes.

  11. While the beets are finishing, sear the rack’s meat on all sides in an oiled, oven-safe pan over medium-high heat until browned, then move it to the oven to roast. Roast the rack until it reaches an internal temperature of 130 degrees (check it after 7 minutes), then remove it from the oven to a plate to rest for about 10 minutes, loosely covered with foil.

  13. When the beets are tender, add the remaining red wine vinegar to them.

  15. Slice the rack into one or two bone chops, then serve them with the beats and a dollop of horseradish cream.



Farmer Spotlight – Dick Collett at Greenfield Estate

Dick Collett has been managing Greenfield Estate for over 20 years, running it for a family trust that purchased it in 1939.  He strives to “do things properly and do them once” while “presenting stock at the highest level.”  We interviewed him about the farm and his connection to it, here’s what he had to say:


How did you get into farming?

I left school at an early age to pursue a career in farming. My background is from a urban upbringing and worked my way up the chain to the management position here in 1990

Could you describe the type(s) of land you farm on?

Greenfield is classed as gentle rolling country, normally a very safe farming district [it has reliable rain], although we do tend to get dry in summer.


How many animals do you run?  Why do you run that kind/those kinds of livestock?
We run 7700 ewes to ram with 130% lambing*.   2300 hoggets, 1300 of which go to ram. The sheep are all

romneys. We buy in 250 cattle from a sister property as yearlings, put a bull to the heifers and calve about 150 of them. So we can usually winter between 350 and 400 cattle.
These are hereford and angus and we use a murray gray bull for the heifer calving.   Once these heifers are weaned at 31/2 months we fatten the mothers and process them at carcass weights of usually 290-300 kg.   We process 2 yr steers off fodderbeet at around 350kg carcass weight.

* Seeing farmer jargon you don’t understand? Check out our farmer terminology guide!

How are your farm & methods unique?

Grazing cattle in the winter on fodderbeet has been a very unique method and to be able to put upwards of 2kg per day on animals, to have them grade in the Reserve grade is very satisfying.


How does it make you feel to know that families & chefs in America are enjoying your meat?
The fact that people in America enjoy our product is extremely satisfying.


What are your favorite cuts of the meat you raise?  How do you like them prepared?
A ribeye steak grilled medium rare and a lamb roast with mint sauce and new seasons vegetables.


Why do you work with Silver Fern?
It is our company’s policy to work with Silver Fern Farms.



Grass fed beef Teres Majors with Miso Butter


This dish is about as umami packed as it gets – mushroom rubbed beef with a miso butter sauce (essentially a play on a beurre blanc, without the wine).


You’ll have extra porcini salt left over.  It’s a great rub for steaks or mix-in for burgers!


Servings: 4


2 Grass-Fed Beef Teres Majors
1/2oz Dried Porcinis
1 t Smoked Salt
1 T Red Miso
¼ C Chicken Stock
4 T Unsalted Butter
Salt & Lemon Juice to Taste



  1. Preheat your oven to 325 degrees.

  3. Use a spice grinder to grind the porcinis and smoked salt together into a fine powder.

  5. Use butcher’s twine to tie each teres major with a series of loops, folding the thin end under the meat beside it to create a piece of even thickness. Rub each teres major with some of the porcini salt.

  7. Sear the beef on all sides in a hot, oiled, oven safe frying pan until the teres majors develop a browned crust.

  9. Move the pan to the oven and roast the beef to an internal temperature of 120 degrees (for rare/medium rare). When it reaches temperature, remove it from the oven and put the teres majors on a plate to rest, loosely covered with foil.

  11. While the beef is cooking, combine the miso and chicken stock in a small sauce pan over low heat, whisking until the miso thins.  Whisk in the butter a tablespoon of at a time, until it’s all incorporated.  Add porcini salt and lemon juice to taste.
    Keep the butter warm until you’re ready to serve.

  13. Slice the teres majors and serve them with the miso butter & your choice of sides.



Grass Fed Beef Salad w/ Creamy Chervil & Dill Dressing

Leftover beef tenderloin is a delicious salad mix in.  Here we’ve paired it with avocado, charred tomatoes, bibb lettuce and a creamy chervil & dill dressing.
Servings: 6-8
1.5# Grass-Fed Beef Tenderloin
1 T Dijon Mustard
1 T Champagne Vinegar
1 T Sour Cream
½ T chopped Chervil
½ T chopped Dill
½ t Honey
¼ t Salt
2 heads Bibb Lettuce
1 Avocado
1 pint Cherry Tomatoes
High Heat Oil (canola, safflower, etc)

  1. Roast or sous vide the tenderloin to your desired level of doneness, then chill it completely.

  3. Preheat your oven to 450 degrees.

  5. Toss the tomatoes in high heat oil and put them in a large-oven safe skillet or roasting pan. Move the pan/skillet to the oven and roast the tomatoes for 15 minutes.

  7. Cut the tenderloin in half lengthwise, then slice it into bite sized pieces.

  9. Whisk together the Dijon, sour cream, vinegar, extra virgin olive oil, herbs, honey and salt in a bowl, until a smooth dressing forms.

  11. Tear the leaves off the bibb lettuce heads. Pit, peel & slice the avocado.

  13. Serve the tenderloin with the lettuce, avocado, charred tomatoes & dressing.



Grass-Fed Beef Potato-Crusted Tenderloin Roast

This lighter, easier take on a beef Wellington uses sous vide to cook beef tenderloin to a perfect rare-medium rare (increase the water bath temperature for more doneness), then shredded potatoes to make a golden brown crust.
Servings: 4-6
1.5# Grass-Fed Beef Tenderloin
Small Yukon Gold Potato
One Egg White, beaten until loosened up
1 T Dijon Mustard
¼ C Crème Fraiche
1 C Beef Stock
2 T Minced Combined Fresh Sage, Thyme & Dill
1 C Red Wine
2 T Butter
Canola Oil

  1. Set your sous vide machine to 122F (for rare) or higher for more doneness.

  3. Rub the tenderloin with salt & pepper, then vacuum pack it in a sous vide bag.

  5. Once the sous vide bath reaches temperature, lower in the tenderloin bag and let it cook for three hours.

  7. Remove the bag from the water bath and cut it open. Take out the tenderloin, reserving the juices inside the bag.

  9. Pat the tenderloin dry, then rub it all over with the mustard.

  11. Peel the potato, then coarsely grate it using a box grater into long strands. Mix these strands with the egg white until well coated.

  13. Press the potato onto the tenderloin on all sides.

  15. Oil a large cast iron skillet with the canola oil. Get it quite hot, then carefully put the tenderloin in.

  17. Cook until one side of the potato has browned, then gently turn the roast to sear another side. Repeat until the potato is browned on all sides.

  19. Remove the tenderloin from the pan and move it to a plate. Loosely cover it with foil.

  21. Pour the red wine, beef stock, and juices from the sous vide bag into the skillet. Bring the mixture to a simmer and simmer until it reduces by two thirds.

  23. Add the mixed herbs and crème fraiche. Stir, then taste & add salt if necessary.

  25. Continue to cook until the sauce is thick enough to coat the back of a spoon, then stir in the butter and remove the sauce from the heat.

  27. Serve the roast with the sauce and your choice of sides.



Farmer Spotlight – Douglas Duncan at Oitari Station

Douglas Duncan’s great great grandfather came to New Zealand from Scotland by boat in 1870.  He landed at Wanganui on the coast of the North Island, then went straight to the local Maori power and offered to buy land from them.  He asked them to show him where the trees and berries were the biggest and the wood pigeons were the fattest.  His theory was that these things were all indicators of the most fertile soil, ideal for farming.

So the Maori took him 100 kilometers on horseback to the Turakina River and told him this was the place matching his request.  He purchased the land from them for an assortment of items, including money, blankets, muskets, food, whiskey & more.


Douglas’s great grandfather developed the land from bush, and left it to his seven children who farmed it together for fifty years.  In 1996, the 25 shareholders got together and auctioned off their shares.  Mr. Duncan and his brother purchased the other shares to become the owners.


In 2012 Mr Duncan bought his brother out, and now is the sole owner of the property which he now farms with his three sons and staff.


Otairi Station’s 9884 acres of land ranges from flat rolling to very steep hill country. Mr. Duncan also owns two other properties making up a further 3,700 acres of flat land.


Mr. Duncan’s primary business is lamb – he runs 16,000 breeding ewes, 4,000 hoggarts (lambs over 1 year old).  However he also runs 2,000 angus crossbreed steers.  With these herds plus the stock he buys, the farms produce 45,000 lambs per year and 8,000 cattle with an average carcass weight of 330kg.

His favorite parts of farming are maintaining his land, producing good stock, and marketing them well.  He likes working with Silver Fern Farms because they’re a farmer owned cooperative, so any profit they make comes back to the producer.  He also appreciates that they have a very strong consumer focus.


When it comes to eating beef and lamb, he feels simple is best – scotch fillet [ribeye steak] cooked on a very hot stove and lamb racks cooked the same way, with plenty of salt, are his favorite dishes.


In future he hopes to attain a 170% lambing rate and plans for his sons to continue to grow the business he’s built.  All three of them are already involved in agriculture – one is an analyst in charge of syndication, another manages his farms and others in their care, while the third handles livestock procurements and assists in the prime stock business.



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