That home is Carrell Farms in Monroe, Georgia – NOT out in the Wild, Wild West
Fun fact: buffalo and bison are not the same. (There are probably quite of few nature lovers reading this and thinking,“Duh,” but I’d wager that the vast majority of us think they’re interchangeable.) The American Bison is not a buffalo; in fact, it’s more closely related to the domestic cow. So close that when a Daddy bison and a Mommy cow love each other very much… you get the idea. Buffalo have more discerning dating tastes (i.e., they won’t mate with either a cow or a bison).
The early settlers likely saw similarities between The New World’s 60 million bison and known buffalo species from the homeland. The settlers referred to the large beasts as “bison” and “buffalo” interchangeably, and the name “buffalo,” though scientifically inaccurate, stuck.
In reality, you can only see domestic buffalo in the United States on farms, such as Carrell Farms in Monroe, Georgia. There are two species of domestic water buffalo: the swamp or Asiatic water buffalo and the river or Riverine water buffalo. The Carrells raise both, along with sheep and alpaca.
“Unique Meats Raised Right” isn’t just a tagline for Carrell Farms. Livestock live a specie-appropriate lifestyle and eat a specie-appropriate diet of warm and cool season grasses, legumes and forbs (no grain, antibiotics or GMOs allowed!). Livestock are also humanely harvested at a USDA plant in South Carolina. The owner sits on the advisory board of Animal Welfare Approved and shares concerns that stock is always handled calmly and respectfully.
You can visit Carrell Farms every Saturday morning in the summer at the Suwanee Farmers Market.
CARRELL FARM’S BUFFALO CON QUESO DIP
- 1 pound water buffalo, ground
- ½ cup onion, chopped
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- 8 oz. tomato sauce
- ¼ cup ketchup
- ¾ tsp. fresh oregano
- 8 oz. cream cheese
- 1/3 cup Parmesan cheese
- 4 Tbsp. cooking oil (butter, olive, etc.)
- Tortilla chips
1. Sauté onion and garlic in oil over medium heat until soft. Add ground water buffalo meat and cook until just brown.
2. Reduce heat to low, stir in remaining ingredients until smooth and warmed through. Keep warm in a crock pot if desired.
3. Serve with tortilla chips.