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Gsieser Osterochsen - Easter ox from Val Casies

Dish with a long history

Contemporaries fell into raptures with this tender, fine-fibred meat of the mighty "Gsieser Osterochsen" ("Easter ox from Val Casies") as soon as 200 years ago.
In Val Casies, it is said that it was even served for the Emperor's Easter meal in Vienna. Even then “Gsieser Ochsen” distinguished themselves by their special fattening: In spring, the „Augkehralan“, the young cattle, came to high pastures where they could grow and prosper for at least two summers on ox pastures in the shepherd's care called „Ochsner“ according to the motto of the farmers: „The bones in summer, the meat in winter“. When it was then time for the Easter market in spring, the farmers personally herded their showpiece through the valley to the great market in San Lorenzo di Sebato in Val Pusteria. Master butchers argued for the best ox, decorated the auctioned animal festively and proudly strutted through the arcades.
This old tradition was nearly abandoned after World War II and was only reawakened by the inhabitants of Val Casies in the last twenty years. Easter ox auctions again take place in San Lorenzo di Sebato. The beautifully marbled ox meat of 700 kilo animals with protected seal of quality is served in the form of braised calf or shoulder, fillet, tartar or prime rib. But please be aware: If you once taste “Gsieser Ochsen” meat, you will get addicted to it.

To look up:
Bachmann, Alois: Bäuerliches Leben und Arbeiten einst und jetzt. In: Bergbonifizierungskonsortium Gsies/Taisten (Hrsg.): Das Gsieser Tal. Ein Südtiroler Hochtal im Spannungsfeld zwischen Tradition und Zukunft. Gsies 1997, S. 300-328
Baur, Johannes (Hrsg.): Das Kirchenbuch des Kuraten Franz Anton Sinnacher für die Kirche von St. Magdalena in Gsies. Innsbruck 1965, S7f
Burger, Wolfgang: Zur Geschichte des Gsieser Tales von 769 bis zum Ersten Weltkrieg. In: Bergbonifizierungskonsortium Gsies/Taisten (Hrsg.): Das Gsieser Tal. Ein Südtiroler Hochtal im Spannungsfeld zwischen Tradition und Zukunft. Gsies 1997, S. 111
Grass, Nikolaus & Holzmann, Herbert: Geschichte des Tiroler Metzgerhandwerks und der Fleischversorgung des Landes. Tiroler Wirtschaftsstudien (35). Innsbruck 1982, S. 240
Kahn, Johann: Ochsenmast – Gsieser Osterochsen. In: Gsieser Gemeindeblatt, Jahrgang 18, 2008/2, S. 33f
Plant, Fridolin: Das Gsieserthal. In: Österreichische Touristen Zeitung vom 15. Mai 1868, Wien. S. 109-115
Weber, Beda: Das Land Tirol. Mit einem Anhange: Vorarlberg. Ein Handbuch für Reisende. Band 3: Nebenthäler, Vorarlberg. Innsbruck 1838, S. 134-137
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