Where's the beef? Along just a short drive to one of our neighboring towns lies the WPH Ranch, between Mtn. View and Willow Springs.
Meet Monty and Georgia Williamson, high school sweethearts who started raising beef while both were still in school. Fifty years later, the ranch has become a family affair and has adapted over the last year to circumstances created by the pandemic.
The Williamsons saw a need when meat was hard to find in the grocery stores; they knew the time was right to market their beef. By November 2020, they had their government-inspected meat ready for customers and now offer a continuous supply of Hereford steers with processing dates every month forward.
When I asked Georgia why polled Herefords were the couple’s choice of beef to raise, she replied, “They have the perfect amount of marbling, without too much fat, that produces the most flavorful meat.”
The cattle raised on the ranch are grain-fed and -finished to provide flavor without excess fat. The Williamsons are third-generation beef producers who believe ranching must be in their blood. They are proud to offer their boxed beef, perfect for those who want to stock up but don't have a freezer, and they deliver to West Plains, Willow Springs, Mtn. View and Cabool — or take the pretty drive to the ranch and meet them in person.
Like so many I've interviewed who have found other ways to earn a living during a pandemic, the Williamsons have also partnered with Ainsworth Confections for a Valentine special of steak and sweets. Check out their Facebook page, @WPHRanch, for more details.
They've also added an Airbnb vacation rental to their property for added income.
It continues to amaze me how so many of our neighbors took a chance on their product during one of the hardest years yet and are making a better living for themselves.
Before I go, I had to ask Georgia if she had any tips for cooking beef and her quick reply was simple: “Don't overcook it!”
And speaking of cooking beef, Georgia has shared her recipe for pepper steak, so if you're looking for another meat option, give the Williamsons’ beef a taste. You can contact them on their Facebook page, call 417-247-0782, or visit wphranch.com for more information or to order a beef box. It was a pleasure to bring you this story, as well as the past ones. There will be more ahead!
From Georgia Williamson
1/4 cup cooking oil
1 large sirloin steak (1 1/2 pounds) sliced into thinnest slices possible, about 1/16 inch to 1/8 inch (Tip: Slices cut easiest when the meat is partially frozen.
1 large onion, sliced
1-2 large green peppers, cut into strips
1/2 teaspoon each salt and pepper
2 cups of beef broth
3 tablespoons soy sauce
salt and pepper to taste
minced garlic to taste
2 tablespoons cornstarch
1/4 cup water
In 1/4 cup of oil, quickly stir fry meat until brown, then add sliced onion and green pepper strips; cook another two minutes. Add 1/2 teaspoon of salt, pepper.
Immediately add 2 cups of beef broth (or beef base and water). Cover and simmer for 10-20 min, or until meat is tender, adding additional broth if needed.
To the skillet, add soy sauce, salt and pepper to taste, and minced garlic.
Dissolve 2 tablespoons cornstarch in 1/4 cup water. Add to mixture in skillet, stirring constantly, until it thickens.
Serve over hot rice. Makes 4 servings.