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Thread: Newbie saying hello, with Questions on Home butchering

  1. #11
    Senior Member quantumcloud509's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Spokane, WA aka Spokanistan, or Spoklahoma, or...
    Welcome! Some might say the answers are in the wind...I have yet to do a cow so cant be helpful.

    Amat Victoria Curam Fortune favors the prepared.
    "A human being is primarily a bag for putting food into." -George Orwell

  2. #12

    Join Date
    May 2013
    San Diego, CA
    pierre recently did an awesome filet knife.... as for a boning knife maybe as jon. his expertise in knives in unimaginable. i am sure he could steer you in the right direction for breaking down an animal of any size and shape! Good luck on your search and welcome to the forum!

  3. #13
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    San Diego, California
    Welcome aboard!

    I assume there is a very limited set of members that can answer you questions, but hopefully you get what you are seeking. I am curious on what it will take, even though I will never be in the situation to do it myself.

    Good luck!

  4. #14
    Senior Member chinacats's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    On the (frozen) water Maine
    Greetings babysister, no help here either, but thought you may enjoy about butchering (I believe there are a few others in the series if you find it worth your time). They definitely have the right tools for the job.

    Keith Neal nice to see you posting--hope things are going well.

    once in a while you get shown the light, in the strangest of places if you look at it right

  5. #15
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    I would check out some videos on youtube about butchering whole cattle, I doubt that's something any of the restaurant folks around here do. Pigs are another story, but whole cow is not a restaurant norm hehe. Aging beef is something you should look into, you should age your ribeyes and strips. Turning a whole cow into burger would be a waste. You should research a little how to use each part and how you should go about distributing / preparing / freezing all of it. You could age alot of the steaks, so they would keep fine. Stew all of the shanks, could turn all of the flank type meat into fajita beef and it would be okay vacuum packed frozen.

    I would grind all the leftovers and fatty bits after I got all of the primals divided out, I am curious to see how this goes. A cow is a lot of food and lots of possibilities to do cool things with the tasty bits. You will have plenty of scrap for burger don't worry. Remember don't toss your fat. Also, making burgers with trim from aged steaks is a beautiful thing. Mmmm tasty possibilities. Nice to have you around Babysister, you can tell how proud Keith is, you must show some pics of your animals, eggs and other farming goodies! We like that sort of stuff around here even more than knives.

  6. #16
    Senior Member
    Zwiefel's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Little Rock, AR
    Welcome! I was just thinking about something similar this weekend...but with rabbits. My neighbor raises them and would be happy to have me prepare something with some of them. Maybe I'll get some answers in this thread too!
    Remember: You're a unique individual...just like everybody else.

  7. #17
    Senior Member aaamax's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2013
    Sweden of old, not new
    I'll take a stab at this one.
    Bolt pistol to the head or a small cal. bullet.
    slice jugular as soon as possible to bleed out while heart is still pumping.
    If you can hoist it in the bucket, then I would suspend it there if at all possible. I.e up by the legs and go to town just like you would on a deer(in the garage/shade, etc). There really is no difference in four legged beasts except for the weight (some glands in wild animals to avoid). IF no choice, do it flat.
    Six years old is still ok in my book, but it won't be real tender, even the loins. But I think there is better flavor!
    Hang time is a tough one. Temp is a biggie. but over the years I hate to admit it, but I don't see much difference in butchering direct or waiting. Hell, I've even been forced to butcher in the summer! Just make sure no flies.
    I'd go for big cuts and keep the butchering simple.
    Have a trash can at the ready.
    Knives, I use a small skinning blade for 80% of the job. A saw is good to get out the ribs, but nowadays I leave all of the spine intact and just fillet out the neck and loins, etc. Makes for easier freezer storage.
    I keep a stainless tray for the small bits that you'll end up with and that becomes the burgers. Everything else gets a better treatment in the kitchen.
    Remember, covered, low and slow is your friend in the oven.
    Grass fed? Damn, it's the best. Have fun.
    Long live Carbon!!

  8. #18
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Welcome. You could ask member ChucktheButcher, he may have some hints and suggestions.

  9. #19
    Senior Member Lucretia's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2011
    This thread from a while back had some recommendations on butchery books.
    Now is not the time to bother me. And it's always now. Wiley Miller

  10. #20
    Thanks for the video link. That is a really good video! I liked the aesthetic of it. Some of the videos I have found on animal processing are waaayyy less classy.

    Thanks for your advice on the knives. I will check into that.

    A friend said that Outdoor Edge has decent knives, so I think we will check on that, too. Don't know if those are any good, but from what I have seen so far, they are reasonably priced.

    Thanks for your thoughts on the meat cutting. They give us much to look into. One friend had advised us to turn it all into hamburger, but I don't think we will do that, as it sounds like there might be some pretty good eating in the whole cuts, even off of this older animal. We can always grind it up later, too, if we find the cuts too tough.

    There is an outfit in Missouri called, and we are looking into some of their videos. Will check online first, to see if this is needed, or is already covered on youtube. They also offer a set of knives.

    Wow! Thanks for taking time with this! We will use a bucket to move the beast to the cut-up zone, and have a gambrel with come-along to raise it, where it will be strung up at the base of a stout limb of a tree in the shade. We mean to do this in fairly chilly weather, so no flies.

    Very interesting to read your comments on hang time and on going for larger cuts... hmmm, that sounds brilliant, actually. As a cook (just a kitchen cook), I do prefer meat on the bone, and this may help us get a direction together on how to proceed. The trash can is a good idea... is that for actual cuts, or just for the scraps? Maybe we should have two trash cans. Or maybe three, to include one for the hide.

    It is interesting that you use a skinning blade for most of the job. We are looking into the uses of a skinning knife, a boning knife, a big heavy butcher knife, a bone saw, and a cleaver.

    Stainless steel tray, check!

    Covered, low and slow in the oven... my favorite! May be a good enough reason to buy this:

    I have a friend who swears by it.

    Yep, grassfed is the best. It is the bomb!

    Thank you! I will check in with ChucktheButcher.

    Thanks! I will check on the books. Books are good.

    My brother was right about this forum!


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