30 Minute Thai Beef with Basil (Carbon-Farmed Beef)

by Fresh Planet Flavor
30 Minute Thai Beef with Basil (with healthy for the environment Carbon-Farmed Beef) | Fresh Planet Flavor

30 Minute Thai Beef with Basil (with Carbon-Farmed Beef) | Fresh Planet Flavor

This quick and tasty 30 Minute Thai Beef with Basil is my first recipe introducing carbon farmed beef. What is carbon farming? The TL;DR version: it’s a style of farming that removes carbon dioxide from the air through agriculture.

How it works involves a quick science lesson: all agricultural production involves the process of plant photosynthesis, which uses sunshine to combine carbon dioxide (CO2) from the air with water and minerals from the soil to produce plant material, both above and below ground. However, common agricultural practices, including driving a tractor, tilling the soil, over-grazing, using fossil fuel based fertilizers, pesticides and herbicides, result in significant carbon dioxide release. As much as one third of the surplus CO2 in the atmosphere resulting in climate change today originates from land management practices that cause loss of carbon, as CO2, from our working lands.

[bctt tweet=”Land management is the second largest contributor to carbon dioxide emissions on planet earth. ” username=”freshplanetflvr”]

This sounds dire, but there’s a solution. Carbon can be stored long-term (for centuries or longer) in soils in a process called “soil carbon sequestration.” Carbon farming involves implementing practices that are known to improve the rate at which CO2 is removed from the atmosphere and converted to plant material and/or soil organic matter. Carbon farming is successful when carbon gains resulting from enhanced land management and/or conservation practices exceed carbon losses. I love this light-hearted interpretive illustration about the process below!

Carbon Monster

The meat for this 30 Minute Thai Beef with Basil is sourced from a local farm that not only raises its livestock in a clean and humane way, but is also on the cutting edge of carbon farming practices that leave the land in better shape than they found it. The 700-acre Stemple Creek Ranch in West Marin, along with the Carbon Cycle Institute, is working to create and implement a “carbon cycle protocol.” The protocol refers to grazing patterns and composting cycles to encourage perennial grass growth that capture carbon at a greater rate than it’s released by farm operations.

30 Minute Thai Beef with Basil (with Carbon-Farmed Beef) | Fresh Planet Flavor

I’m lucky that this innovative beef is available just a half hour walk from my apartment. I visited the Ferry Building farmer’s market in San Francisco to score a pound of this carbon-farmed beef from Stemple Creek Ranch yesterday morning, and created this quick little riff on the classic Thai beef with basil to showcase it! Enjoy. 🙂

30 Minute Thai Beef with Basil
Recipe Type: Entree
Author: Fresh Planet Flavor
Prep time:
Cook time:
Total time:
Serves: 2
  • 1 large carrot, shredded or julienned
  • 4 baby bells peppers, sliced
  • 2 green onions, chopped
  • 1 tsp fish sauce
  • 1 tsp honey
  • 4 tsp coconut aminos, divided
  • Juice of 1/2 lime, plus lime wedges for serving
  • 1 tsp sesame oil
  • 1 lb lean ground beef
  • 1 tsp ginger juice
  • 2 tbsp chili garlic sauce
  • 1/2 tsp salt, or to taste
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper
  • 1 cup fresh basil leaves, sliced or shredded
  • Extra basil, toasted sesame seeds, chili flakes, cauliflower rice, and edible flowers, for serving (optional)
  1. Combine the carrot, peppers, green onions, fish sauce, honey, lime juice, and one teaspoon of the coconut aminos in a medium bowl. Toss well and set aside.
  2. Heat a large wok or heavy bottomed skillet over medium heat. Add the sesame oil and once hot, add the ground beef. Brown all over, breaking it up as it cooks, about 5 minutes. If necessary, drain off the grease from the meat before seasoning.
  3. Add the ginger juice, chili garlic paste, salt, black pepper, and 1 cup of fresh basil. Cook, stirring frequently, until the basil is wilted (about 3-5 minutes).
  4. Divide the beef evenly among serving bowls over caulirice (optional), top with equal amounts of the carrot and pepper mixture. Garnish with fresh basil, toasted sesame seeds, and chili flakes, if desired.

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candy September 12, 2016 - 2:32 pm

Have to find ginger juice and probably leave out the flowers I know I can’t find them.

Fresh Planet Flavor September 12, 2016 - 6:26 pm

Oh, the flowers are 100% optional!

Meileilan September 12, 2016 - 3:01 pm

I love this. I can now say I found my fave blog with great recipes. I cannot wait to try this and follow more of your posts.

Chrissa - Physical Kitchness September 12, 2016 - 3:57 pm

WOW this looks awesome. My kind of meal (satisfies the healthy side of me and the hearty side of my husband). Totally pinning for later!

Fresh Planet Flavor September 12, 2016 - 4:26 pm

Plus it’s quick quick quick for those weekday evenings!

Leah September 12, 2016 - 9:36 pm

This sounds amazingly fantastic! I can’t wait to make it!

Cait September 13, 2016 - 12:22 am

This looks SO good and I love that it’s a 30 minute recipe. I can’t wait to give it a try.

– Cait | http://www.prettyandfun.com

Katherine Turro September 13, 2016 - 12:51 am

This looks delicious!! Love all the fresh ingredients!

Liz September 13, 2016 - 2:33 am

I love, love, love Thai recipes. Your pictures are great and really make the ingredients stand out. I’m looking forward to trying this dish.

Kari Peters September 14, 2016 - 2:58 pm

I can’t believe you’re just a half hour walk from the Ferry Building – so lucky!!! Thanks for the great information about carbon farming, I hadn’t heard of it before, and these bowls are so incredibly beautiful!

Fresh Planet Flavor September 14, 2016 - 5:19 pm

Aw, thank you Kari! Yes, walking to the Ferry Building is definitely a perk of San Francisco living.

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