Friday, November 9, 2007

Butchering Day on the Ranch

Yesterday we butchered a cow and a bull. I'm sitting here going through the pictures thinking just what can I post?... without being too graphic. It's not a pleasant job, right from the shooting of the animal to the skinning, gutting, and hanging. But this is our life, this is our meat for the winter, this is why the animals are raised on the ranch, they are not pets (even though most of them have names). We seldom have meat in our freezers that come in pretty little packages from the grocery store, our meat is wrapped in brown paper or perhaps Ziploc baggies. Most every part of the animal is used, the meat is turned into all different cuts; steaks, roasts, stew meat, and ground beef. The bones are used for soup and stock. The kidneys (blech) are used for steak and kidney pies. The liver (and it's big) is sliced and bagged, sometimes I cook it but I'm not really a fan of it so I often grind it up and use it for making doggy biscuits. Even the hide is used, a neighbour gets that and I have no idea what he does with it :) The only thing that is disposed of is the guts and hooves so there is really not much left. I've picked out four pictures, not too graphic but you'll get the idea.

Hubby, knife in hand who has been doing this for more years than he can remember. One of our first dates was just the two of us doing this in the rain, unplanned and very late at night, to a cow who had prolapsed and nothing more could be done for her... I don't think I'll ever forget THAT night!

Pops, my FIL, oversees the whole procedure.

Pops and Hubby cutting off the hooves.

Hubby, Dorothy (a neighbour who is often helping on the ranch), Grandma (MIL), and Pops.


I hope I haven't been too graphic for you all but I really wanted to show you a bit of country life. The meat will hang for a few days and we'll be grinding beef on Saturday, if you'd like to help you know where I live :)

7 comments:

NEO said...

Neat, fresh beef. I would love to help, but the miles get in the way. It would be nice to be able to raise our own meat, but living in the city it really isn't an option.

Anonymous said...

what an exciing first date??? I guess you knew what you were getting into. nonthing like fresh liver you should try it..

Kansas A said...

Hi NEO...
"Living in the city" ahhh how I would like to try that someday! To be so close to grocery stores, restaurants, and even a coffee shop! But I know I wouldn't last long... LOL

Isela: Purling Sprite said...

Fresh beef...nice juicy steaks and juicy roast...yuummm!

Although I don't envy the work, I do envy the yummy meat you will be enjoying.

When I moved to UT, I saw a deer get butchered. It was an interesting experience. I got to help cutting up the meats and put them into freezer bags and brown paper. Fun experience...won't ever forget it.

Anonymous said...

Hi Kansas....
All in a day on the Ranch! I know the grinding for hamburger and cutting up of the meat will be a big chore. It is nice to know you have nice fresh beef. I wish I was there to help.

Love Ya!

Lizzardmoon said...

Fascinating stuff. I'm envious. We don't get to butcher a cow, but when a neighbor gets a deer for us, I'm right over there with my knife and zip-loc bags. I love filling my freezer with meat I can "trust".
Thank you for sharing!

Donna said...

You are lucky to be able to butcher your own meat - you know exactly where it comes from and it is as fresh as it gets!