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Heart. Land. Soul. Profiles in Courage, Compassion, Care and Quality

American Lamb Board 6300 East Hampden Avenue #2106, Denver, Colorado 80222 (866) 327-LAMB (5262) www.americanlamb.com

FR ESH OR HOMEG OWN FLAV R


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heart. land. soul. Profiles in Courage, Compassion, Care and Quality Sheep are raised in every state in the country, from the rolling hills of California and the native grasslands of Pennsylvania to the alpine meadows of Colorado and the high country desert of Idaho, and everywhere in between. The story behind those who raise sheep and how their products reach your table is just as varied; the people who raise sheep for a living are as diverse as the regions they call home. But there is one common thread that ties them all together—they are food artisans whose dedicated work demonstrates their respect for the environment and delivers delicious food that graces our plates and palates. From east to west, from farm flocks of 50 to range operations of more than 1,000—these family-owned operations are extremely diverse because sheep are adaptable to a wide range of climates and management systems. Producers focus mainly on sheep breeds that thrive in their local conditions, raising their animals on lush pastures and high-quality finishing feed to create consistent and delicious flavor, regardless of the season or location they are raised. Our American lamb producers and products are among the finest in the world. A unique blend of the past, the present and the future, these producers radiate a lifelong commitment to quality and conservation. This attention to quality results in a delicious, tender and nutritious natural protein for American families. This strong sense of heritage and caring tradition creates an opportunity for all of us to reconnect to our food source, sharing unparalleled food experiences because we intimately know the source of the product and, specifically, the people who weave together a rich, colorful and flavorful tapestry expressed in a superior harvest.

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in the right direction, determined instead to turn circles around each other. Diane credits her 12-year-old grandson, Jake, with getting things turned around. Although it was definitely a team effort, the young shepherd was completely at ease.

“Jake took off his jacket and knew exactly what to do,” Diane says. “He’s been working with sheep since he was a toddler. It’s instinctual.” g

Recipes from Diane Peavey John’s mom loved raising sheep and the ranching life, but she was not the best cook. Even so, Diane remembers one particular recipe that was always delicious. Take a lamb shank, cover with Lipton® onion soup mix, wrap in tinfoil and place in a low oven (about 250°F) at lunch time. By dinner time, voila! The dish is ready to unwrap and serve. Here’s another (slightly more sophisticated) recipe for you to enjoy.

Lamb Tagine (All Around the World Cookbook, by Sheila Lukins) ¼ cup olive oil 1 large onion, grated 2 tablespoons garlic, minced 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon 1 teaspoon ground cumin ½ teaspoon ground coriander ½ teaspoon ground ginger ½ teaspoon salt

¼ teaspoon coarsely ground black pepper 3 pounds American lamb shoulder, cut into 3” pieces 2½ cups rich beef broth 2 cinnamon sticks (each 3” long) Peel of 1 lemon 1½ cups pitted prunes, halved 1 cup whole blanched almonds

Place first nine ingredients (olive oil, grated onion, garlic, cinnamon, cumin, coriander, ginger, salt and pepper) in a large, heavy pot and stir. Add lamb and roll in spice mixture to coat well. Add broth, cinnamon sticks and lemon peel. Bring to a boil over high heat, reduce heat and gently simmer, partially covered, over medium-low heat for 2½ to 3 hours (taste throughout and add cinnamon and cumin as needed). Stir in prunes and almonds; continue to cook until lamb is tender, about 30 minutes longer. Remove cinnamon sticks and lemon peel before serving. Serve in a shallow bowl with couscous or rice pilaf made with brown rice, sautéed onions and currants, or other favorite grains. (serves 6)

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Taste from the Trails

SJohn and Diane Peavey S Flat Top Sheep Ranch

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In a world that is often dominated by male presence and perspective, Diane Peavey adds an important voice to the rich tapestry of culture, history and tradition within the American sheep industry. Her husband, John Peavey, is a third generation sheep rancher and their son Tom is fourth generation. Already a steady presence in the field at their Flat Top Sheep Ranch outside of Carey, Idaho, the Peavey’s grandson Jake, 12, is an up-and-coming fifth generation Idaho shepherd. Raised on the East Coast in New York and Washington, D.C., Diane comes to this lifestyle from a unique perspective. Her proximity to Capitol Hill, combined with eight years living in Alaska, helped cultivate an interest in public policy, primarily in relation to natural resources. Her instrumental work helped pass a major piece of legislation for Alaska. In fact, that’s how she met John. During one of her trips between Alaska and D.C., Diane stopped over in Hailey, Idaho, to visit her brother and he introduced her to John.

“I was drawn to John’s passion to raise animals with care,” Diane says, “but I was initially more interested in the political aspect of John’s life than his life as a rancher. As I came to know him

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better, it was clear that his heart was connected to the land, that it was his source of strength and made him who he is.” After a few more visits in D.C. ( John was an Idaho state senator for 22 years) and Idaho, John invited Diane to spend a summer on his ranch with him. What she came to learn during that summer on the ranch was in keeping with everything she’d been working on. “On the range you are surrounded by environmental issues—it’s ingrained into rangeland from range management to water issues,” she says. John took her by the hand, teaching, mentoring and showing Diane the ranch through his eyes. Twenty-seven years later, she’s come to love it as much as he does. Diane jokes, “John offered me a lifetime of lamb chops. How could I leave?”

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Living on the land has shown Diane what a strong cultural attachment there is to ranching. It’s not just a job, it’s a culture. She’s active on the ranch but generally has a pen and pad in hand, taking notes to capture all that she can about ranch life. Published author of the book Bitterbrush Country, Diane considers herself an intermediary between worlds, trying to capture and archive the stories that give voice to the rural experience. When she originally began writing stories during harsh economic times for the region’s ranchers, Diane explains that it was really out of fear of forgetting than anything else. She decided to take her stories to Idaho Public Radio and see if there was anything they could do with them. Seventeen years later, her voice can still be heard weekly. The ranching life is not an easy one. Few people are aware that the average sheep family (particularly those in the western states) lives a highly nomadic lifestyle, traveling between distinct elevations and climates— from the harsh desert winter range to high summer mountain pastures. Still, it’s a lifestyle born of love and passion, connecting the brave souls who work the animals and the land to the remoteness, quiet and—almost

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primitive—serenity of the natural world they inhabit. The Peavey’s story is a classic Western love story. It’s a shared love and passion emerging from a lifetime of ranching together. Diane makes it very clear that she would not know any of this had John not opened up to her, told her the stories and shown her what it meant. She feels blessed to be part of a life that so few people know and understand. Still, the Peaveys have taken a central role in educating people about the amazing life, history, culture and work traditions ingrained in their lives. The Trailing of the Sheep Festival evolved from a shared desire to involve the local community in what they were doing. The three-day festival in late October highlights Idaho’s rich tradition of Peruvian and Basque sheepherders and the area’s few active ranching families. As Diane puts it, “the festival shows our community, here’s what we do and gives them a chance to participate in living history.” This year’s Trailing of the Sheep parade provided Diane with a small, but profound, glimpse into the future. For some reason, the sheep refused to trail down Ketchum’s Main Street

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www.americanlamb.com 


in the right direction, determined instead to turn circles around each other. Diane credits her 12-year-old grandson, Jake, with getting things turned around. Although it was definitely a team effort, the young shepherd was completely at ease.

“Jake took off his jacket and knew exactly what to do,” Diane says. “He’s been working with sheep since he was a toddler. It’s instinctual.” g

Recipes from Diane Peavey John’s mom loved raising sheep and the ranching life, but she was not the best cook. Even so, Diane remembers one particular recipe that was always delicious. Take a lamb shank, cover with Lipton® onion soup mix, wrap in tinfoil and place in a low oven (about 250°F) at lunch time. By dinner time, voila! The dish is ready to unwrap and serve. Here’s another (slightly more sophisticated) recipe for you to enjoy.

Lamb Tagine (All Around the World Cookbook, by Sheila Lukins) ¼ cup olive oil 1 large onion, grated 2 tablespoons garlic, minced 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon 1 teaspoon ground cumin ½ teaspoon ground coriander ½ teaspoon ground ginger ½ teaspoon salt

¼ teaspoon coarsely ground black pepper 3 pounds American lamb shoulder, cut into 3” pieces 2½ cups rich beef broth 2 cinnamon sticks (each 3” long) Peel of 1 lemon 1½ cups pitted prunes, halved 1 cup whole blanched almonds

Place first nine ingredients (olive oil, grated onion, garlic, cinnamon, cumin, coriander, ginger, salt and pepper) in a large, heavy pot and stir. Add lamb and roll in spice mixture to coat well. Add broth, cinnamon sticks and lemon peel. Bring to a boil over high heat, reduce heat and gently simmer, partially covered, over medium-low heat for 2½ to 3 hours (taste throughout and add cinnamon and cumin as needed). Stir in prunes and almonds; continue to cook until lamb is tender, about 30 minutes longer. Remove cinnamon sticks and lemon peel before serving. Serve in a shallow bowl with couscous or rice pilaf made with brown rice, sautéed onions and currants, or other favorite grains. (serves 6)

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Taste from the Trails

SJohn and Diane Peavey S Flat Top Sheep Ranch

o


Heart. Land. Soul. Profiles in Courage, Compassion, Care and Quality

American Lamb Board 6300 East Hampden Avenue #2106, Denver, Colorado 80222 (866) 327-LAMB (5262) www.americanlamb.com

FR ESH OR HOMEG OWN FLAV R

American Lamb Producer - John & Diane Peavey  

Taste from the trails, John & Diane Peavey- flat top sheep ranch

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