Marks Daily Apple
Serving up health and fitness insights (daily, of course) with a side of irreverence.
22 May

Raw Meat

1329901325 5bc4f49298It’s about the most primal, albeit not necessarily attractive, image you can conjure: dirty, disheveled, muscular cavepeople in rough animal skins and furs partaking of the uncooked prize from the latest hunting endeavor (or perhaps another predator’s leftovers). Fast forward to today. Our more “civilized,” better dressed, contemporary selves follow the maître d’ and sit down to intricately painted dinnerware and linen napkins to partake of, you guessed it, raw meat. And then pay big bucks for it, to boot. Sushi, steak tartare, carpaccio: they’re considered delicacies of sorts. And while sushi has caught on in the last twenty years or so, Saveur still calls steak tartare a “forbidden pleasure.”

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For some of us, raw meat of some variety is regular fare. For others, well, it just gives us the willies. Our culture, among the biggest meat lovers, seems to have the hardest time envisioning it in its more “natural” state. We have grills the size of Texas, after all. The closest we usually get to the primal side is using a spit. But raw meat in some form or another has a hold on virtually every other culture. Raw fish dishes, in particular, are common in many Asian cultures. A number of Middle Eastern cultures enjoy recipes with raw goat meat. Inuit cultures eat raw fish and reindeer as a regular and primary part of their diet.

Proponents of raw meat claim that any kind of cooking reduces the healthfulness of meat. And then there’s the issue of cooking-associated toxins like HCAs and AGEs. Yet, let’s face it. We don’t live in primal times. Conventionally raised and mass processed meats carry a higher risk of bacterial contamination (think E. coli and salmonella among others), and that’s serious business.

But not all meats carry the same threat. Those who eat raw meat as a regular part of their diets often seek out small farms and game butchers to ensure healthier conditions and the likelihood of healthier meats to begin with. Sushi connoisseurs choose restaurants that have strict “sushi grade” standards for their fish. The FDA doesn’t regulate that label, but it does require that all raw fish other than tuna be frozen at temperatures cold enough to kill parasites. Some chefs freeze the meat to 70 degrees below zero and claim there’s no detectable difference in taste or texture.

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Harriet V. Kuhnlein, Professor of Human Nutrition at the Centre for Indigenous Peoples’ Nutrition and Environment at McGill University in Montreal believes that raw meat is a healthy option, provided it’s clean: “Every time you process or cook something — anything — you are likely to be losing nutrients at every step. As long as this meat is still microbiologically safe, it is at its best raw or frozen fresh.”

There are a few groups who are strongly advised against eating raw or undercooked meats: pregnant women or those trying to conceive, young children, “the elderly” (not our word), patients receiving chemotherapy or those who are taking immunosuppressant medications, and people with weakened immune systems.

So, what to do if you’re interested in giving raw meat a try? Source matters. We suggest you shop carefully. Ideally, you should know the farmer and the processor. When going raw, cleaner is even more important. Put your meat in deep freeze if you want to have that added peace of mind about parasites. (Freezing is acceptable to most raw foodies, but they do contend that freezing kills the natural enzymes of foods.)

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Consider using alcohol based dips and especially marinades (port wine, vodka, etc.) that may help kill bacteria. Citrus based marinades are thought to be somewhat helpful in this regard, but don’t count on them to do as much as a good ounce of alcohol. Better to mix the two if your taste calls for it. Finally, if the head is willing but the stomach is weak, try searing the meat and leaving the middle uncooked. Add a flavorful dip, and you’ve got yourself the best of the primal and contemporary in one tasty tidbit. We’ll call it primal fusion.

So, what do you think of raw meat? Thoughts, questions, recipes, raves?

jelleprins, Alexandre Chang, obscene pickle, ulterior epicure Flickr Photos (CC)

Further Reading:

Safe Cooking Temperatures

How to Eat Enough Protein

Dear Mark: Pondering Protein

Hunting Ethics

Subscribe to Mark’s Daily Apple feeds

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You want comments? We got comments:

Imagine you’re George Clooney. Take a moment to admire your grooming and wit. Okay, now imagine someone walks up to you and asks, “What’s your name?” You say, “I’m George Clooney.” Or maybe you say, “I’m the Clooninator!” You don’t say “I’m George of George Clooney Sells Movies Blog” and you certainly don’t say, “I’m Clooney Weight Loss Plan”. So while spam is technically meat, it ain’t anywhere near Primal. Please nickname yourself something your friends would call you.

  1. It is so hard to find good steak tartare in the US anymore. Most trendy places have switched to tuna tartare or some other permutation…but it just ain’t even close.

    Paul wrote on May 22nd, 2008
    • Im really intriqued by the raw diet especially since I have developed so many digestive problems in the past few years and food intolerances.

      The Paleo diet seems to help the most, but Im still having issues.
      My question is I tried raw liver, by blending it into a smoothie a few times and every time I always feel nauseous for 2 hours after….and then fine afterwards, but those 2 hours are not fun….no diarrhea just nauseous.

      also I order from US meats…organic and pasture raised.

      Any thoughts would be appreciated!

      nichole bijelic wrote on June 20th, 2014
  2. So can the human body process all types of raw (fresh, clean) meat–pork, chicken, rabbit, etc.?

    Maria wrote on May 22nd, 2008
    • Yep!
      I’ve eaten elk, pork, boar, moose, beef, oysters, raw organs, raw dairy, you name it. Fresh and frozen, but I prefer fresh. Except chicken, haha. I always thought chicken was gross to eat, and I love my pet chickens. Having pet chickens, I realized just how gross they really were.

      Talya wrote on August 24th, 2013
  3. I’ve recently switched to raw eggs for breakfast. Can’t beat the prep time. Would love to eat raw meat more often, for the convenience alone.

    It’s difficult to get a feel for the real risks because there is so much overblown anti-bacterial nonsense going on these days.

    John wrote on May 22nd, 2008
  4. Maria,

    Humans can handle any and all types of animal flesh. We have millions of years of practice!

    Mark Sisson wrote on May 22nd, 2008
    • Yes, I have been eating raw meats of all kind along with raw eggs and dairy for 5 yrs. Never any ill effects….quite the opposite! Big time energy and optimal health! I have loads of great recipes and all of the campers that come here get somewhat converted in to raw meat lovers! =) “Rawk on” Retro-Raw

      Kieba wrote on September 6th, 2011
      • Hey,
        If you’d be so gracious as to pass on a few of your favourite marinades/sauces/recipes for raw meat (beef, pork, fish)
        it would be very much appreciated!
        I realize you posted this two years ago haha thanks regardless

        Alec
        (sublime_dointime@hotmail.com)

        Alec wrote on July 28th, 2013
      • Kieba I would love some recipes and ideas as well!

        christina wrote on August 24th, 2013
  5. I would love to try raw steak or fish, provided it was prepared in some way. I don’t know if I could just tear it off the bone raw… And I still feel squicky about raw chicken or other birds, but I understand that it’s due to socialization.

    I’ve been trying to get more comfortable with dealing with meats, really tearing a chicken carcass apart to get everything or crockpotting bone-in meat instead of deboned. I used to live on ramen, and let my DH cook any meat for the most part. But awhile ago I realized that I would have to get over the squicky feelings and just deal with it. If everyone else through all of history could do it, then so can I.

    Sometimes I still go “yeugh” at certain things, but when I consider how the meat I used to eat was processed for me (fast food & packaged stuff) I realize that it’s way less disgusting to handle it myself.

    Sorry to tangent, the point is that mentally, yes, I do want to eat raw meat. But I think I need to first get handle on some of the more basic stuff to get to that point.

    Heather wrote on May 22nd, 2008
    • I did alot of research on eating raw steak, but i only found speculations from people who havent tried it. Literally ten minutes ago i opened a package of lean steak for pan frying i got from the market, sprinkled some tasty spices on it and ate about four medium size slices, it tasted great. we’ll see how i feel tommorow lol

      shaun wrote on September 2nd, 2009
      • Good for you Shaun! it takes courage to try raw meat for the first time. Please keep us informed.

        Kind regards,

        Steve H

        Primate1 wrote on September 2nd, 2009
        • Shaun,

          :~)

          I forgot to ask…are you supplementing with an omega-3 rich source (such as cod liver oil), to address the omega-6 to omega-3 imbalance? That is a good idea if you are eating non-grass fed raw meat. In fact is a good idea regardless of the origins of your meat (and fish) intake.

          Kind regards,

          Steve

          Primate1 wrote on September 2nd, 2009
      • i’ve been eating raw meats(only chicken and beef) and i’ve never gotten sick from it. but i’ve also been doing so since i was a kid, so my body is used to it, if you’re a first time eater, chances are you might get sick, or you also may be unlucky enough to get a bit of meat that’s infected(paratie, bactieria, virus, etc, people will say you will get sick, but that just shows that they too have fallen prey to the FDA’s lies

        Shigeki wrote on February 28th, 2012
        • I have also been eating raw meat since I was a kid. I remember sneaking it when my mom was cooking; rabbit, lamb, beef, pork, etc. Never could stomach raw chicken.. Texture is too much like boogers for me, but like you, I have never gotten sick from it.. Quite the opposite, it enhances my mood tenfold, gives me lasting energy, and has helped maintain a good healthy weight. I would love to see the social stigma associated with eating raw meat vanish, but until that happens, I will continue NOT telling my partner what I’ve consumed for the day :p

          Emily wrote on June 5th, 2012
        • I do have a question I have been eating raw meat on and off for 6 months, never got sick, but I do get dark circles under my eyes after i eat it??? And it will go away after a day or two? any input anyone?

          jet wrote on July 19th, 2012
  6. FRESH (not frozen and thawed) raw tuna. Maguro. Mmmmm. Flesh that melts in your mouth. Mmmmm.

    Sonagi wrote on May 22nd, 2008
  7. I did try sushi and sashimi when we lived in Japan, but didn’t care for the texture.

    I used to like my steaks medium. Now I prefer them almost rare, so much more flavor and so tender!

    Don’t think I can manage uncooked chicken!

    Nancy S wrote on May 22nd, 2008
  8. Thanks for the article! I’m regular raw meat/eggs/salmon eater and I find it easier to recover at DOMS when I have eaten raw food after gym training instead of prepared. Anyone noticed the same?

    Mikko wrote on May 23rd, 2008
  9. pet cats used to be fed scraps of real food – including raw meat, since the pet food con merchants got in on the act, they discovered that early recipes caused cats to decline in health – they discovered that cooking the meat destroyed an essential protein – purine i believe – so they lived once it was added. of course they don’t consider problem of diabetes and obesity caused by the rice the put in cat (junk)food- ever seen a wild cat eat rice? – me neither

    markus wrote on May 23rd, 2008
  10. oops – correction

    taurine is the amino acid that is destroyed by cooking meat

    so raw meat is more complete – it may even be more easily digested

    m

    markus wrote on May 23rd, 2008
  11. Yup, Markus, it’s taurine which is destroyed in cooked cat food. Taurine is abundant in heart tissue, but not skeletal muscle, so even feeding raw meat scraps night not provide enough. I prepare raw chicken (www dot catnutrition dot org for the recipe) for my two cats with a heavy duty grinder, though the heart muscle is often difficult to source in the quantities I need, so I have to add taurine capsules.

    Plus, cats need calcium from the raw bones to balance the phosphorus in the skeletal meat. That’s why I cut and grind up the chicken, bones and all. Cooked bones are too brittle and shouldn’t be fed to animals. An additional benefit to this “species appropriate” cat food is that the feces don’t smell at all in the litter box, and dry up quickly, like coyote skat. Cat’s GI tracts are so acidic and short that there isn’t much residue left of the meat, organs, and bones.

    Heather, if you have a dog or cat and started to feed raw food regularly, you would quickly adjust to handling raw meat and poultry. My squeamish factor greatly reduced when I realized how much healthier my cats were on real food.

    I’m intrigued by raw meats and probably could use the meat I get from direct farm sources (though I don’t know their butchers). I’ve had carpaccio in restaurants but not at home. I will eat sushi without a problem, but I don’t love it the way some people do. Maybe I’m too focused on remembering the names or the restaurant bill to enjoy it :-).

    But mostly I am trying to find ways to cook organ meat (offal) in ways my family likes. If I can get somewhere with that, then I may branch into the raw meat route (I have pork and bison heart, liver, and kidney in the freezer now, waiting for inspiring recipes). But my son finds a certain Mr. Bean and Steak Tartare dvd skit so funny I might have a hard time serving it to him.

    Anna wrote on May 26th, 2008
    • I started feeding my cat a raw food – grain free diet a few months ago, and he has never looked better! Shiny fur, muscular, and bouncing around like a kitten (he is 13)… I got him late in life so he hasn’t always had this type of diet.

      When I was a kid I loved the taste of raw hamburger….. I was lucky I didn’t get really sick eating it! Now, truthfully I can’t stomach the taste of any raw meat except for Tuna Sashimi, Ahi Tuna and rare beef. So I probably would cross this off my Primal eating list as a “not gonna happen”.

      Mary wrote on January 12th, 2011
  12. I have always eaten my steak basically just warmed up. Then, since finding sites like this and learning more about nutrition in a year than I thought possible and finding a source of true grass pasture raised cow meat, I now occasionally eat straight up raw meat.

    Not as an actual dish yet, though I don’t quanitfy dishes anymore, but while trimming grass fed sirloin off the bone for marinade once I tasted a piece and didn’t quite stop. Now whenever I prepare some true grass fed I seem to always eat at least a little or more raw, and it is so delicious!

    I do the raw egg bit for breakfast too at times. I actually like to crack three into a half cup of grapefruit juice, stir lightly and swoosh!

    Awesome site by the way!!! Thank you so much for sharing so much knowledge!

    Paul wrote on October 8th, 2008
  13. Some Ethiopian restaurants in St. Louis have raw options on some of their dishes. I generally enjoy them but wish they would cut the pieces a little smaller as they can be quite tough.

    Sean Carley wrote on January 28th, 2009
  14. I’ve been eating quality raw beef for 2 months now with no problems. It takes no time to cook, and depending on the cut is very tasty. I’ve been eating grass fed hormone-free ribeye, london broil, t-bone, and few other cuts from Texas Longhorn and red/black angus. I get the longhorn from a local rancher and the cow from Whole Foods. Please visit my blog for documentation of my experiences. Thanks for posting this entry!

    Greg Parham wrote on February 26th, 2009
  15. I was in Peru a month ago, enjoying their local delicacy “ceviche”, or raw fish, in a good restaurant. Now I’m 11 days into an 18 day treatment for intestinal parasites. Maybe it wasn’t the ceviche. Whatever. I’m not going to die, but I have missed 4 weeks of the cross-country ski season. For me, eating raw meat is not worth the risk unless you, probably like Grok, saw the meat killed with your own eyes. Modern raw meat travels from somewhere, somehow, killed by someone, killed some unknown time ago, to your table.

    Graham wrote on March 1st, 2009
    • What program are you doing? Every other program I run into says I should pretty much fast on water and prepare for lunacy? Any advice? =)

      Bettina wrote on March 23rd, 2011
  16. Graham, good point. Sorry to hear about your experience. That’s certainly a possibility when traveling abroad – or even in the USA for that matter. I wish you a speedy recovery.

    Mark Sisson wrote on March 1st, 2009
  17. I’ve noshed on raw meat a time or two (mainly for the lulz), but until recently I hadn’t had it as part of a meal.

    The other day, though, my little brother and I went backpacking. We brought a picnic lunch, which for reasons of convenience I decided to make (and keep) cold. Well, as one may imagine, this provided a bit of a problem – the Primal diet does not enable one to eat things like lunch-meat sandwiches, and well-cooked meat is positively disgusting when cold.

    It was the perfect time for some Grok-style raw meat.

    I heated a skillet, added a bit of oil, and tossed in a chunk that I’d sliced off a beef roast. Added some salt, browned it, and took it out. (I wouldn’t have browned it first, but the dairy where the meat came from is notorious for its germ-ridden facilities.) Stuck in the freezer to chill, then stuffed it in the backpack with my salad and LB’s sandwich and spaghetti squash.

    I can now say with certainty that there is nothing like sitting on the ground out in the wilderness munching on a piece of cold, raw meat. Even in the blah, brown, dry desert, it was absolutely fantastic. (LB even picked up some wild mustard to eat on his sandwich – very caveman of him.)

    One thing I would definitely have to say is that raw meat is best cold. Once you stop thinking about it as “eew, raw meat!” it takes little effort to eat through the entire piece, and it’s tender and quite tasty.

    Unfortunately, I have yet to convince our mother of this fact… she only likes her meat when it’s well-done. (Hates it cold, though. I wonder if I should mention the connection.)

    GeriMorgan wrote on May 3rd, 2009
    • Gotta try Alton Brown’s method for easy beef jerky. No cooking required just marinade and dry. Doesn’t matter if its hot, cold, or raining, delicious beef is ready for consumption

      Gino wrote on September 10th, 2011
  18. I remember as a baby back in Siberia I was delighted to have small cubes of raw horse liver. So much so in fact I would call it chocolate (as acquiring actual chocolate was luxury even the well off could scarcely enjoy)

    Another dish we enjoyed in the old country was Stragonina, the absolute freshest fish one can imagine. Caught in pristine rivers in the dead of winter through holes in the ice, frozen moments later in the cold conditions, then brought home and enjoyed, still frozen, by shaving off slivers of flesh and letting it melt in your mouth.

    I haven’t been able to bring myself to trust meat in North America enough to eat it any less than medium rare, but one day I hope to once again eat something like the “chocolate” of my childhood.

    Maya wrote on July 19th, 2009
    • Raw horse liver questions. Was it refrigerated, or frozen, or quickly seared? Did it have any kind of seasoning, or sauce? Is raw beef liver comparable at all?

      Practically everyone seems so against eating horsemeat in the U.S.A. nowadays.

      My family owned horses and cattle and even though I love horses I don’t understand why they are so against eating horsemeat here now.

      I admit I wouldn’t particularly want to eat my favorite riding horse but I don’t see anything wrong with eating horsemeat. I would eat it if it wasn’t an individual horse that I was emotionally attached to. I raised a calf that I wouldn’t have wanted to eat either, his name was Buddy and he would come when I called him, yet I eat beef almost every day.

      Is eating horsemeat common in Siberia? I think a lot of horsemeat is eaten in France.

      Is beef, or lamb eaten raw in Siberia?

      I have only eaten beef raw in small amounts with a little salt and pepper sprinkled on it. Gina

      Gina Cervantes wrote on January 27th, 2010
      • Is eating horsemeat common in Siberia? I think a lot of horsemeat is eaten in France.

        They eat horsemeat throughout the Pyrenean belt, because this region was one of those in which, during the last descent of the ice-sheets onto the Continent, the horse was domesticated by the men with white skin. Such is the Magdalenian Culture. Real “Paleo” men.

        We would not even exist if it weren’t for our ancestors eating horsemeat, for only the horse — as we see in certain Siberian tribes who subsist this way today on the reindeer, and are themselves the ancestors of the Eskimos — could break through snow pack to obtain lichen for sustenance. Or our people ate them.

        Horse is a fetish in America because no one here had to rely on it for meat. The Injuns took their cue from the Spaniards who re-introduced the horse and hunted the buffalo from horseback. The horse is nothing more than a giant showpiece for Americans, probably reflecting the same mentality among the English. But go to southern France, Asturias, Kazakhstan or best of all Kyrgyzstan, probably Siberia as well, and people eat it because it’s common livestock or traditional.

        Marshall Lentini wrote on July 28th, 2011
  19. I’ve been eating raw meat, raw fish, raw eggs for some years now, and love the stuff. So practical too…grab and eat.

    I don’t have ready access to grass fed meats, so it has to be regular meat bought from the local butcher. I balance the omega-6 bias in such meats with omega-3 from cod liver oil and regular oily fish consumption. Grass fed is definitely better, without a doubt.

    Kind regards,

    Steve H

    Primate1 wrote on August 29th, 2009
  20. What a great site this is and what great contributions as well.
    I don’t eat a lot of red meat but I am thinking of going raw when I do. This site has helped me heaps. Thank you.

    Lesley A wrote on November 21st, 2009
  21. Hah! Whenever I hear someone talk about eating raw meat, it’s in the same sentence as “crazy”. I personally love the taste of raw beef. I used to sneak into the kitchen and steal some off my mom’s cutting board when she wasn’t looking (in hindsight, a dangerous stint since it wasn’t properly decontaminated). Never got sick from it, though. But I’ve never admitted this craving to anyone for fear of sounding… well, crazy. One way I can pig out on raw stuff is having sushi (about once a month, I don’t like the fact that it’s wrapped in white rice, but it tastes so damn good).

    Maria wrote on December 9th, 2009
  22. I finally took the step into eating raw meat. I got some venison backstrap and instead of cooking it, the thought to just eat it raw overwhelmed me. OMG, it was SO GOOD!

    I have grass-fed beef in the freezer. I’m really looking forward to eating it raw. I also have pastured(wild) boar, but I’m not 100% sure it’s safe.

    Diana Renata wrote on December 15th, 2009
  23. Raw beef doesn’t actually taste like much of anything… it’s bland but has got a coppery smell (I suppose that’s the blood) which is actually pretty enjoyable, it’s only the stringy, slimy fatty parts that are hard to eat raw. Chicken breast raw is almost the same as cooked, just a slightly different texture. Raw fish (depending on the species) often tastes much better than it does cooked.

    Candace wrote on December 27th, 2009
  24. Just a quick anecdote from a lurker cum practitioner:

    4 or 5 years ago I bought some pancetta and some other meats in the ‘fancy italian’ section of my local store. Had just landed a decent job and wanted to treat myself.

    Well, over the weekend I ate a pound of pancetta raw, thinking it was cooked and meant to be eaten that way. Literally when I was chewing on the last slice I read the back of the package that said how you must cook before eating!

    So, 2 days, 1 pound of raw pork, no problems. Granted, not sure of what processing or preservatives but hey, it’s an anecdote!

    Cheers,
    noah

    noah wrote on February 26th, 2010
  25. I have always had an urge to eat meat raw when I was cooking food. Didn’t matter what it was, with the exception of chicken since i dislike the texture either way. But it simply tastes better, richer and if you want to get fancy with it, do a nice tar tarre topped with a raw egg yolk. Points worth considering.

    1)Bacteria is found on the surface of the meat, the inside is sterile. If you worry about bacteria, cut off the outer layer, it only has to be a carpaccio thin slice.

    Always..ALWAYS mince your own beef, always. When it is minced, now you have a million surfaces for potentially harmful bacteria to thrive on. So if you eat it minced, you cut it yourself and eat it right after preperation.

    2)In Italy they make delicious hams that are left to dry as they are, in a tree for more than a year. Then you just scrabe of the mold and get down to business because…see point 1

    3)In Greenland you can get delicious whale meat prepared in a similar manner. These folks only got scurvy when the good christian folks from Denmark told them to start cooking because they were disgusted by thei habbits.

    4)not all parasites are unwanted as long as it is a mutual deal. The new buzz for allergy treatment is…intestine worms. who’d have think? We have just become to sterile for our own good.

    someone here talked about eating raw bear meat. This is a very bad idea as bear meat is notorious for tough parasites that offer up shitty host/parasite arrangements. Even indiginous people native to the bear cook it for hours on end. Game is not a good idea I reckon, the likeliness of parasites is greater.

    Knowing your cow, or atleast a buthcer who knew it should go without saying.

    Happy munching omnivores

    noah (another one) wrote on March 5th, 2010
  26. I wanted to add; If you cannot look your dinner in the eyes you should not eat it.

    it works on several levels, really.

    noah (another one) wrote on March 5th, 2010
  27. you said that cooking ‘kills’ the enzymes.

    I would just like to say that enzymes aren’t alive, so they can’t die.

    Anyway, eating raw meat seems really stupid. For thousands of years humans have been eating meat cooked, we just aren’t adapted to eating it raw anymore.

    pedantic wrote on March 14th, 2010
  28. It breaks down enzymes, they become defunct, useless, a problem, feel free to take ap ick if dead does not work for you.

    We have been adapted to a raw everything diet for millions of years before we took on a new fancy, which in the real time scale, is but a couple of hours ago. Our biology has not changed radically since we came out of the tree/out of the water/god created us.

    noah wrote on March 14th, 2010
  29. Cooking not only separated us from animals but helped develop the human brain. Cooking is not a hap hazard option. Raw is not always a good thing, if ever.

    pjnoir wrote on March 14th, 2010
    • Cooking developed the human brain? I think your brain’s been cooked!!

      I eat supermarket steaks blue rare, all you need is a good high-heat fryer and you get full flavor that is (almost) as good as raw. If I have the time and energy, I drive out to the only meat processer that I personally trust with my raw cuts, and treat myself to a beautifully raw steak. I’m a huge lover of raw salmon as well.
      I haven’t made it to poultry yet, mostly because my “guy” doesn’t do any poultry, and I’ve never plucked a chicken, so I just don’t know enough about it to find a reliable source. Mass production has done us an incredible disservice when it comes to bacteria.

      Krystal wrote on December 5th, 2011
  30. Cooking is what seperates us from animals? Our brain developed because of cooked food? are these things you would like to prove, because I know each of these claims to be -at their best- misleading.

    noah wrote on March 14th, 2010
    • I’d love to hear more about your experience! How long have you been eating raw meat for? Do you have a website/ journal?

      NSWM wrote on July 7th, 2010
  31. I had steak tartare once when I went to Poland and it was AMAZING. I’ve never seen it in the US. I’d eat it right now if I could! :)

    vdh1979 wrote on March 15th, 2010
  32. I have to chime in here – (advisory of some sort – don’t read if you’re squeamish.)
    last winter my uterus went crazy and tried to kill me. So, I basically bled continuously from February until June when I had the hysterectomy. During that time, (and for the first time EVER for me) I CRAVED raw beef. CRAVED!! So – I ate it. (Now,you should know that I live in a ranching community, and buy beef by the half from friend-ranchers – slaughtered off grass, processed locally, if that makes a difference) Tartar, slivers from the steak before cooking, bits of the hamburger,sometimes sitting down and eating a 4 or 6 ounce portion raw.) clearly now, looking back I was lacking a nutrient of some sort, but it tells me that your body will tell you when it needs something – LISTEN!! And now, when I hanker for cow meat uncooked – I eat it! Most of the time I’m a medium rare sort of lady, but there are times when that soft texture, mineral taste just calls to me. So – I answer. My body knows what it needs. (pass the tenderloin…)

    Cristy wrote on May 19th, 2010
  33. So tell me, is it actually safe to eat raw chicken? Most of modern day society will say you must be absolutely crazy to eat raw chicken. The risks of getting salmonella and such are incredibly high aren’t they?

    Montblanc wrote on May 22nd, 2010
    • Most of modern society consumes cupcakes and dozens of cans of Diet Coke per week.

      Pastured raw chicken is safe. Industrial raw chicken is not. This relates to how the animals are raised. If the chicken was raised hurriedly, given grain to eat, injected with whatever sinister concoctions and placed beneath another chicken to be shit on, probably one would not be safe eating its carcass.

      A pastured hen is another story altogether. It pecks around for buggies, it shits on the ground and is not shit on, and the one major risk factor is ingesting grass or browse contaminated by wastewater or fertilizers. If the pasture is clean and the chickens browsed properly, there is absolutely no danger of bacteria associated with unsanitary industrial conditions.

      Marshall Lentini wrote on July 28th, 2011
  34. I loved eating my steak blue rare but now knowing I can eat it right off the cow sign me up. Don’t know if I’m too keen on the raw chicken concept little worried about the sickness not cool. But show me the sushi and the beef

    Grok on

    Primaldirico wrote on May 22nd, 2010
  35. Ah – yes! My kind of subject!

    I love raw cow muscle meat.
    I can definately tell the difference in how I feel after consuming raw meat vs. cooked.
    Raw makes me energetic after consuming it and I have to eat less to feel satisfied.
    When I consume cooked meat I get slightly tired afterwards.
    Bovine meat is the only meat I can consume raw, I can’t get over the fear of parasites in chicken, fish and pork so I cook all those.

    And a smoothie made of raw goat’s milk + raw egg yolk (drain the whites) + 1 banana is to die for!

    Oh – and semi raw beef liver and onions!

    RAWR !

    suvetar wrote on July 1st, 2010
  36. Woot for Montreal :D

    Man, oh man, I’d eat steak tartar all day, every day!

    NSWM wrote on July 7th, 2010
  37. Used to eat Tartare growing up in Austria.The butcher would grind it right there in the shop,on a smaller grinder,than the one used for regular-
    ground ( so,no extra fat !),mix it with raw egg and onions,salt and pepper, on rye-bread : GOOD!!!Eat raw eggs nowadays
    only if they are pasteurized,(Salmonela
    danger).

    Maria wrote on July 19th, 2010
    • If it’s been pasteurized, it has therefore been cooked and all the benefits of eating it raw have therefore been destroyed. Pastured chickens, in a clean environment will lay clean eggs. (Little to no salmonella danger.)

      Tianna wrote on January 3rd, 2012
  38. I loves me some RAW meat!! I find it’s several orders of magnitude more tender, tastier, easier to digest—just SUPER YUMMY!
    Just a bit of salt, pepper, and a touch of chili.
    Of course Mark’s exhortations on evaluating quality sources apply–I don’t do feedlot meat raw. I also make beef ceviche quite a bit–yep, lemon juice, tomato, cilantro, garlic & some spices–let it marinate for 20 inutes or so. Magnificent!

    LukeOZ wrote on July 27th, 2010
  39. Raw beef and fish I like….pork and chicken….I don’t think so (they’re filthy).

    randalland wrote on July 29th, 2010
  40. I’ve tried raw lamb liver, raw fish and raw chicken.

    My naturopath picked up some parasites that weren’t agreeing with my body (whipworms). My guess is it was the chicken. Apparently most store bought chickens undergo some kind of quick boiling process (a slow-food friend of mine learnt this from conversations with chicken farmers- Australia)

    I loved the raw fish though, it tasted salty. It wasn’t yet 24hrs old.

    I’d never have raw pork, there’s a lot more risk there.

    Sally Fallon (from book Nourishing Traditions – highly recommended)strongly encourages eating good quality raw meat but freezing it for two weeks to kill parasites. For city dwellers, I think it’s a good compromise. I’m guessing that’s where a marinade of lemon juice, kefir or raw apple cider vinegar can help restore enzymes. I’m still curious about the enzyme issue though, because I wonder which enzymes are destroyed and which ones the lemon juice etc add.

    Any info anyone?

    AmandaS wrote on August 22nd, 2010

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