Follow Here To Purchase Butchering Beef: The Comprehensive Photographic Guide to Humane Slaughtering and Butchering

Author: Adam Danforth

Publisher: Storey Press
Paperback ISBN: 9781612121833
Hardcover ISBN: 9781612121895
Ebook ISBN: 9781603429320


This impressive book covers the entire process of butchering from humane care of the animals to the final packaging and freezing. Temple Grandin’s excellent foreword about the connection between humane care and better meat reflects her years of experience as a cattle handling and slaughter. Grandin includes important humane slaughtering reminders.

Adam Danforth has put together an extensive guide with clear informative photographs that will go a long way to educating the novice home butcher and expanding the knowledge and skills of the experienced home butcher. The labeled pictorial table of contents both surprised and delighted me

The book is divided into eight chapters, each covering a wealth of material. Chapter 1, From Muscle to Meat, introduces the basics of muscles (muscle structure, muscle fibers, connective tissue, and more), turning muscles into meat, and aging. This chapter introduces the basic understanding of meat which the following chapters will step off from. Chapter 2, Food Safety, lays the necessary groundwork for ensuring healthy pathogen free meat and for proper hygiene, storing and cooking to reduce the chances of infection. Chapter 3, Tools & Equipment, introduces the basic tools necessary to home butchering. The clear explanations of use, care and cleaning of these tools and the wonderful photographs simplify learning the names and use of each specialized knife or other butchering tool. Chapter 4, Butchering Methods, starts with the basics of holding a boning knife, using a bone saw, and using a honing rod to keep your knives sharp for easier cutting and trimming. Next this chapter introduces trimming, boning, tenderization and portioning by weight or size. Chapter 5, Pre-Slaughter Conditions & General Slaughter Techniques, goes through the timeline of care of the animal the day before slaughter, stunning, exsanguinations (bleeding out), hoisting, skinning, evisceration, edible offal, carcass cooling, cleanup and disposal , tools and clothes for slaughtering, and required space.

Each of the first 5 chapters serve as a preparation for Chapter 6, Slaughtering Beef, which details the specifics of setting up for slaughter. The complete color diagram of the skeleton and viscera of cattle along with the flowchart of starting with a dirty carcass and proceeding to a clean carcass allow the beginning butcher to prepare himself for the process before beginning. After these introductions to beef specific information, the chapter details various techniques for stunning a beef animal, bleeding the animal, situating the carcass for skinning, complete steps for carcass preparation, cooling, aging, and cleanup. Chapter 7, Beef Butchering, presents different variations of breaking down a side of beef. The various ways of butchering are accompanied by excellent labeled photographs showing the location of cuts of meat and their position on the carcass. Chapter 8, Packaging and Freezing, finishes up the butchering process with instructions on wrapping and properly storing the various cuts of meat along with a discussion of the effects of freezing and the advantages and disadvantages of various packaging.

Scientific information is embedded in each section of the book and informs about the scientific basis for the way meat is affected by humane treatment, the way food is kept safe or why contamination can affect food safety, how to minimize waste of the carcass, and safe, healthy disposal of unused parts of the carcass.

The easy access layout of the material makes this a very reader friendly guide to a complex topic.

As a resource for home butcher or as a curriculum addition for 4-H or FFA beef project leaders and members this book is unsurpassed.