I Live Where The Buffalo Roamed... - Lela's Cooking Journey Blog at Allrecipes.com - 310969

Lela's Cooking Journey

I Live Where the Buffalo Roamed... 
Sep. 17, 2013 2:25 pm 
Updated: Nov. 22, 2013 1:47 pm

      I live where the buffalo roamed and the deer and antelope play. At night, the antelope sometimes stand in the middle of a country road. I travel the country road to get to my house in Southern Colorado. In my neighborhood, I can hear the restless coyotes bay at the moon.  Everyone knows if you let your cat wander around outside at night, chances are the coyotes will have the cat for a snack. Deer tracks are found often in my front yard. Cows also have escaped and wander down our street. No, I do not own a horse. Although, I do have neighbors that have horses and chickens. Yes, I do own cowboy boots. 

Come and join me for LELA'S BUFFALO ADVENTURE

     I took a road trip to a bison ranch which is approximately eighty-four miles from my house. Wolf Springs Ranch is located on the Eastern slope of the Sangre de Cristo Mountains twenty-one miles South of West Cliffe, Co. The ranch raises bison. 

There are many curves along the way. 

Beautiful peaks to see

Rustic Looking Buildings

The Buffalo ranch is called Wolf Springs Ranch. 

     As luck would have it, there was one lonely bison grazing near the road. I stopped to take a few photos. Bison have poor vision, but excellent hearing. I am pretty sure the bison knew I was there. This buff just didn't want to turn around. The longer I stood there watching the farther he wandered away from me. 

Of course, the bison hid his face so I couldn't get a good photo.

At last, I finally got a profile shot of this magnificent animal. 

    I was inspired by the quiet serenity surrounding the buffalo. I enjoyed the he beautiful grasslands he had to graze and the warm sun beating down his back. I admired his strong muscular physique, tiny tail and huge head. 

     All this inspiration led to some Buffalo Cookin in my house! (Correction-on my patio.)


 If you haven't tried bison meat, it is an experience you should

try. In Colorado, it is common to find buffalo burger in stores and restaurants. Buffalo burgers are leaner and less calories than beef. I used bison flank steak to make fajitas. Grilling or cooking bison will take less time than beef. I was worried the meat would be overcooked. As luck would have it, and a meat thermometer, the bison flank steak was not overcooked.

     I marinated the buffalo flank steaks in lemon juice, worchestire sauce and fajita seasoning for four hours. I made some homemade tortillas and a guacamole salad. Then, I grilled some peppers and onions. The recipe called for cooking the flank steak on the stove, but my husband just bought a new smoker. So, he fired up the electric smoker, added some hickory and apple wood. The flank steak took about 40 minutes to get to 140ยบ. 


The meat was very tender with a hint of a smokey flavor.  The guacamole salad used fresh garlic. I thought the fresh garlic left an after taste. So, next time I make this guacamole salad, I will use garlic salt or garlic powder. I would also recommend adding lime juice or lemon juice so the gaucamole salad does not turn brown.






Thick Style Tortillas Lela Style
Photo Detail
The Prairie in My Neighborhood
Photo Detail
Sep. 17, 2013 2:35 pm
lela you took some amazing pictures. if folks saw a buffalo down here it would just be another sasquach sighting. those tortillas look excellent..nice pictures!
Sep. 17, 2013 2:49 pm
I have to agree with gderr, excellent pics and no I have not had buffalo fajitas. Enjoyed your blog.
Sep. 17, 2013 2:51 pm
AWESOME blog,from your neighbor in Colorado springs!
Sep. 17, 2013 3:09 pm
I am so glad you were unaffected by the floods. I would move there is a heartbeat if they could only import the smell of the ocean. Beautiful, beautiful country and great pictures. That poor bison was shy! Believe it or not there are 3 bison farms within 250 miles of NYC! None as pretty as yours though. Thank you for sharing your adventure.
Sep. 17, 2013 3:34 pm
This was so interesting, for your neighborhood looks nothing like mine! Your photos are great!
Sep. 17, 2013 3:56 pm
wow! sorry for the great state of colorado. so many unaccounted for.
Sep. 17, 2013 4:33 pm
Beautiful photos Lela, I grew up in Edmonton Alberta and just outside of the city limits is a huge park where hundreds of buffalo did roam and were a sight to behold. Never ate buffalo meat. Also very sorry for what happened in Colorado.
Sep. 17, 2013 6:13 pm
Beautiful pics, Lela! My son lives in Custer, SD and his backyard is basically Custer State Park. He has buffalo, elk, coyotes, and even a mountain lion pass through regularly. I have had buffalo, but no in fajitas. They look super!
Sep. 17, 2013 6:23 pm
Hello, Gderr-sasquatch gets around doesn't he? My heart goes out to all the people in Colorado who went through the flooding situation. The flooding was minor in the area I live in. Most of the flood damage is in Northern Colorado.
Sep. 17, 2013 6:24 pm
Hi, Cheryl's Cooking Now. Bison taste like beef, to me! Thanks for stopping by. Hope to see you on the Buzz!
Sep. 17, 2013 6:27 pm
Hi Diana! Thanks! Love your video-You did a wonderful job!... http://allrecipes.com/video/3858/herdez-torta-ahogada-with-chipotle-sauce/detail.aspx
Sep. 17, 2013 6:31 pm
Hello, BigShotsMom! My, I am surprised there are Bison Ranches near NYC. I feel very lucky that the area I live in did not have any flash flooding. We did get a deluge of rain, but not the disastrous rains in Northern Colorado. My heart goes out to all the people in Colorado experiencing the damaging flooding. Thanks for stopping by. See you on the Buzz!
Sep. 17, 2013 6:35 pm
Hi ShoreCook! I do live in a beautiful state. However, I am envious of people who live in driving distance of the Ocean. I lived on the East Coast in Virginia Beach, Va. for four years while my husband was in the Navy! It is so beautiful there, too!
Sep. 17, 2013 6:37 pm
Hello manella! Even in Canada you have buffalo! That is something I didn't know. It is so sad to see all the flooding in Colorado. I just hope the missing people are will be found! A while back I heard about the flooding in Canada. See you on the buzz!
Sep. 17, 2013 6:42 pm
Hello, Mother Ann. Wow South Dakota is also a very beautiful place. I am sure Steve loves all the wildlife and the beautiful Custer State Park. I hope you get to visit him sometime. I was admiring all the wineries you are visiting. I need to make a 25 minute trip to the winery that is closest to me.
Sep. 17, 2013 6:53 pm
Hi loved it all the story and pictures. Thank you for sharing your wonderful day.
Sep. 17, 2013 6:54 pm
Oh Lela, I want to go to there!!! I just love the rugged landscape your photos show. You live In a very beautiful state... And, that Bison is majestic and stately. Really good photos! I just must break down and buy some Bison. All these blogs and recipes look so good! Great blog Lela!
Sep. 17, 2013 7:05 pm
Good Evening, Nadine! It was fun day and I ate out that day, too! Hope to see you on the Buzz!
Sep. 17, 2013 7:08 pm
Hello, Candice! To think there are so many beautiful places I would love to photograph. I would try bison burger to see if you like the bison. I don't think there is a wild gamey taste like deer or elk meat. See you on the Buzz Candice!
Sep. 18, 2013 3:25 am
Lela - You are right - I need to get out there to visit Steve. I've been to SD before but not since he's lived there! I went to a couple wineries in CO the last time we were out that way about 8 years ago.
Sep. 18, 2013 5:47 am
Hi Lela. We're planning a trip to ColoSpgs next month to see the grandchildren (and their parents). Maybe I can get SIL to do some bison burgers for us on the grill. Have never tried it. What a mess in the northern part of the state. Our hearts go out to those affected by the flood waters. So much damage and more to be discovered.
Sep. 18, 2013 5:51 am
Good Morning, Mother Ann! I know you miss Steve. I hope you get to see him soon.
Sep. 18, 2013 6:00 am
Good Morning, Indiana Peggy! Colorado Springs is a beautiful city to visit! I am sure it won't be hard for your SIL to find bison in the grocery stores. I am sure you will be busy with the grandkids; however, if you like I would love to have lunch and visit. I hope the flooding here in Co. has subsided. It is so sad to read and watch the news lately.
Sep. 18, 2013 6:29 am
Colorado is such a magnificent state, and the lifestyle looks so relaxed. Lucky you to be surrounded by such spectacular scenery and how fortunate you are to be able to see bison in its natural environment. Nice lead in to a great bison blog.
Sep. 18, 2013 7:21 am
Well, we have the wildlife here but certainly not the vistas you do! Loved the blog!
Sep. 18, 2013 10:06 am
Your pictures are beautiful Lela, I used to visit Colorado when I lived on the west coast, such a pretty scenery state. Believe it or not, we do have Bison in Florida, but they are protected on wildlife preserves. However, I read back in July a bison ranch in south Florida was starting up. Due to the extreme drought in the mid-western states, Florida has become a great option for ranching, since we have open land full of natural wild grasses and lots of rain to keep it green and growing, all year long. I hope it all works out since they will cater to more of the retiree health conscious group and keep the meat here in Florida markets to keep the price down. I've never had anything other than buffalo burgers, would be nice to try some other types of meat out and local grass fed...nummy nums.
Sep. 18, 2013 12:32 pm
Great blog and photos! I'm liking that red platter.
Sep. 18, 2013 6:51 pm
Hello, lutzflcat! There are plenty of wide open spaces and beautiful mountain scenery. Sometimes the whole herd is near the road. I could see the herd up on the ridge, but I didn't have my telephoto lense. I really wanted a photo of the buffalo calves. Thanks for stopping by.
Sep. 18, 2013 6:57 pm
Hi Cat Hill! I have always wanted to see the Lake of the Osarks in Missouri. My husband's family came from Macon, Missouri. thanks for stopping by.
Sep. 18, 2013 7:08 pm
Good Evening, Sherri! I am surprised that Florida has Bison. I hope to see different cuts of bison in the grocery stores because bison is indeed tasty.
Sep. 18, 2013 7:12 pm
Hi bd.weld! I have six red Fiestaware oval platters my kids gave me for Christmas. We use them as dinner plates to load up on yummy Mexican dinners.
Sep. 19, 2013 2:18 pm
Lela: I have only been to Colorado a couple of times, but it is indeed a beautiful state. What a great idea to photos of live bison in your blog. They are incredible creatures. It doesn't get much better than homemade tortillas!
Sep. 19, 2013 6:42 pm
Good Evening, bikerfamily. The herd sometimes grazes near the road where you can get some great photos. My husband was riding his motorcycle last month and saw bison calves. However, he didn't stop and take photos. When I make homemade tortillas they are gone in a blink of an eye. Thanks for stopping by.
Sep. 20, 2013 8:26 am
beautiful pictures! I live two hours from the Rocky Mountains, and I remember seeing the herds and herds of wild Buffalo on the side of the road as a kid. Now you never see them, the wolves took over. I know the gov't are bringing them back in, as the wild herds are more up north now. It's great there are farms around using them for meat as at least they did not go extinct!! Thanks for sharing!
Sep. 20, 2013 9:56 am
Good Morning, westcoastmom! Thanks for the kudos and reading my blog. These days, it doesn't seema lot of people are reading AR Blogs. Some of the Yellowstone Buffalo in 2012 have been moved to a new area to preserve the buffalo. http://www.scpr.org/blogs/environment/2012/03/20/5177/yellowstone-buffalo-find-new-home-fort-peck-reserv/
Sep. 21, 2013 3:45 am
You are so lucky to be near such beautiful vistas! Thanks for sharing your lovely pictures, and for letting us tag along on your road trip.
Sep. 21, 2013 4:55 am
What beauty you have all around you. Thanks for sharing these spectacular photos.
Sep. 21, 2013 5:08 am
That was really beautiful. Your very blessed indeed. Enjoy every moment of every breathe.
Sep. 21, 2013 7:57 am
Good Morning, Bibi! The Colorado scenery is breath taking. My favorite scenic place is Silver Jack Lake. Enjoy your day.
Sep. 21, 2013 8:01 am
Hi, Mauigirl! I remember the beautiful vistas you shared from scenic Hawaii. Colorado has desert prairies to beautiful mountain peaks. I will be looking forward to your next photos of Hawaii.
Sep. 21, 2013 8:03 am
Hello, RatherBeCooking! When I lived in Virginia for a while, I missed the open spaces and the blue skies. Thanks for stopping by!
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About Me
I enjoy cooking for our family sit down dinners. Although my kids are grown, we are a close family that enjoys 4-5 sit down dinners a week together. My family's favorite dinner is chicken enchiladas smothered in green chili. I have a passion for cooking, baking for the holidays and food photography.
My favorite things to cook
I am family oriented and spend time with my family enjoying meals. My favorite things to cook are Mexican food and any food my family asks me to cook. My family looks forward to home cooked Mexican food at least once a week and Italian food.
My favorite family cooking traditions
I am on a journey to reclaim family recipes that were lost when the cooks in my family passed away. Cooking traditions are a major part of my passion for cooking. On Christmas Eve, we always had green chili and tamales. Cookie baking, lemon bars, pizzelles , and potica have been a must at Christmas as long as I can remember. My family looks forward to homemade pizza, when we gather as a family to decorate the Christmas cookies. Thanksgiving wouldn't be Thanksgiving without noodles and gravy piled high on mashed potatoes, pumpkin pie, and broccoli and rice casserole. On the 4th of July, there is the 4th of July Potato Salad that I make using 10 pounds of potatoes. Mexican Food is part of our weekly menu--green chili served over mashed potatoes or as a slopper (green chili poured over hamburgers.) I am always making tortillas for someone. They call my tortillas little white pieces of gold. Saturdays are Family night for dinner. It is the one day my kids can request a meal.
My cooking triumphs
Seeking help on the Buzz and the AR Blog has resulted in a few triumphs. I am extremely ecstatic about overcoming the yeast monster. I can now bake baguettes, focaccia and the best rolls in the world, my Grandma Rita's Butter Rolls.
My cooking tragedies
My first attempts at baking bread/rolls resulted in rock hard flat rolls. However, I am improving. Baking at High Altitude is somewhat of a challenge.
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