So you want to process your own animal?

Show Notes

On this episode of Huntavore, Things are down to the wire on opening day for whitetails.  Weapons are checked, packs are loaded, and preparations for butchering that animal have been arranged, right?  If DIY hunts are your thing, then lets take it to the full circle in bringing the animal to the plate.  Nick hopes to challenge and encourage folks looking to process their own deer this year.  He answers some questions sent in that would be helpful to anyone taking on one of the most primal, yet intimidating parts of acquiring one's own meat.  So rinse off that butcher block, and put an edge back on those knives.  We’re talking processing on this episode of Huntavore

Hours of research, digital scouting, and preparations go into a DIY hunt.  Going the distance in finding the animal, putting on a stalk and perfectly placed shot is a huge accomplishment.  Yet, too many times the final task is dropped off for someone else to do.  The most primal, arguably the most intuitive, but understandably the most intimidating part.  Processing your own game.  Reasons can stack up why our trophy gets dropped off at the butchers.  There is no time, I don’t have the equipment, or I don't know how.  You can tell me when that buck shows up on a ridge in daylight and what he's eating with a single piece of equipment that costs a couple hundred dollars.  You can also tell me you put a 40 yd shot on him with a thousand dollar bow, from a tree stand or saddle more engineered than the original space shuttle.  But you also get nervous about a whole leg laying on your table.

Mission here tonight is to encourage some ownership in our harvest,  try something we may not have any experience in, and answer some questions about tackling this feat.

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Show Transcript

[00:00:00] Welcome to the Huntivore podcast powered by Sportsman's Empire, where we celebrate the hunting and fishing lifestyle through the utilization and consumption of our wild game. No egos. Fork in hand. Beer in the other. No status. A piece of red meat on a hot grill and turn it into a burnt offering. Just catch it.

Cut it. Cook it. This is episode 132, So You Want to Process Your Own Animal. On this episode of Huntivore, things are down to the wire on opening day for Whitetails. Weapons are checked. Packs are loaded and preparations for butchering that animal have been arranged. If DIY hunts are your thing, then let's take it full [00:01:00] circle in bringing the animal to the plate.

Nick hopes to challenge and encourage folks looking to process their own deer this year. He answers some questions sent in that would be helpful to anyone taking on one of the most primal yet intimidating parts of acquiring one's own meat. So rinse off that butcher block and put an edge back on those knives.

We're talking processing on this episode of Vore.

Hey folks. Beautiful. Evening here in Michigan. I tell you what sitting here Thursday, the 21st of September, it is crunch time. This is the final push for, if you need something, it better be on exp expedited delivery. If you still need to head over and get tags as I do, I'm going to have to go make my yearly venture over to my I'm a little bit [00:02:00] superstitious when I when it comes to tags I've gotten them from one spot always.

And it's just, I'm going to stay true to that. Maybe it's not superstitious. Maybe it's just more tradition. But I'm heading over to our local convenience store the liquor store down here in Middleville. I've been getting them there. Ever since I started hunting and just going to continue to do that, but we're down to that final push.

This is the, yeah, make sure that you got everything pack and check it out, check it twice, make sure that everything is the way it needs to be. I did get out and get a chance to shoot. Things are feeling good. Now I know it's just Hey, I think every day this week I'm hoping to get out and.

Take like one to five shots. Any chance that I can get out and just make a cold shot, you just pick up the bow, head out there, set it up. Try one at 20, try one at 25, try one at 19 get the ever close 11, switch it up. You get one shot and try to get it in. [00:03:00] So yeah, we're on that push now for.

Opening day here in Michigan, the 1st of October. So yeah, we still got a little bit of time before us, but today still thinking of after the shot, we're trying to find all the different elements of our hunt. We're trying to find the different aspects of our. Of our adventure of our pursuit of that animal and now it comes down to where we're thinking about after the shop We've got we talked a lot or the last episode we talked about recovery We talked about getting that animal in getting it clean or getting it gutted getting it clean and hanging it up.

Now we're going to get into the process, your own animal. So you're going to take that challenge on this year, or you've just thought about taking on that challenge this year, or maybe you're in the camp that you're like, ah, you know what? No, I don't want to take on this challenge, but at the same time, [00:04:00] Talent and skill, knowledge and application are what is at play here.

This is the value that we're trying to add, and there are professionals out there that can handle this for you. There are professionals who look forward to and prepare for having animals dropped off so that they can then be cut up and then wrapped up. And given to you in a state, ready ready to be cooked, but there's even one more step further, and that is to be doing it yourself.

And I looked at a, I looked at just the process on how we're approaching this as hunters, and the more that I talk to Folks in very different camps, some of them really like to take that on, and others really don't like to take that on. But I just came up with just some realizations.

As for example, we [00:05:00] spend hours of research, digital scouting, and preparing for these do it yourself hunts. We go the distance in finding the animal, putting on the stalk, and perfectly placing a shot. And that in itself is a huge accomplishment to go into a territory that you may not have ever been, figure it out, get on that animal, and put the shot in.

How many hours does it take? How much effort is put into that? Yet too many times the final task is dropping it off to someone else. The most primal and arguably the most intuitive But understandably one of the most intimidating parts is processing that game for yourself. Reasons can stack up when it comes to getting that trophy.[00:06:00]

And then taking it to the butchers. For some of us, we don't have the time. That time is not allotted for that. We find the time to get into the woods, and then after that we need to get it off to somebody else. Arguably because of that. Could be conditions. It is hot. It is warm and coupled with time.

I'm not going to be able to do that. I don't have the equipment or I just don't have the know how to do that. But it also surprises me that also in this area that you've never been by putting a camera out there you can tell me when that buck shows up on that ridge in daylight. You can tell him.

You can tell me what he's eating on a single piece of equipment, being that, that camera that, costs a couple hundred dollars. You could also tell me that you can put a 40 yard shot on that animal with a thousand dollar bow and from a tree stand and a saddle [00:07:00] that has more engineering than the original space shuttle.

You, you get nervous about the final task of what needs to happen when we drop the carcass off on a table. It's intimidating, and it's daunting, and we don't see that parallel as what we do going and finally killing that animal. That stops for us. That's the end. And I think that in my understanding, in my perception, the kill is merely the crescendo.

The kill is merely the apex of action, but it is not the final chapter of the story. The final chapter ends with it being bagged up, put into the freezer. And then the final anecdote being that when we [00:08:00] put it onto the plate and are able to serve that to loved ones. I feel like half of the adventure is being pushed off onto someone else.

Granted, those someone else's are a vital part of the whole scheme. Of hunting. Of big game hunting. Of deer. Of elk. Of moose. Of pig. You name it. Big carcass animals that need to be processed. They are there and they are willing to help for that price. Skill comes at a price. Look at builders. You want to get somebody who can, when you're looking at having a deck done or a remodel done on your house.

Cheap can be more expensive because it's not done correctly. But upfront paying for quality is going to be that hard [00:09:00] pill to swallow. And I've heard it from guys all over the place when they do buy equipment, that it's by quality, the buy once cry once, and then you've got it. Can't that happen?

Even on the backside here that we're going to be looking to get the quality out of that animal, we're going to have to pay for it. The other thing behind it is guys feel that it's behind a shroud, that the curtain is being pulled across from their eyes, and we get these theories that butchers mix all this deer together, and they give me a subpar ground product, or the, they're keeping part of my backstrap because I feel like there should be more, like this box can't be all of my deer.

That is all of your deer. When you pulled it out of the woods, we had to lose the bone, we had to lose the hair and the hide, [00:10:00] and we had to lose the fifth quarter, we had to lose the gut out of there, and that's a lot, and then we continue on because we're going to take off the bone, we're going to take off the silver skin and the sinews the blood loss meat, and as that whittles down, what we're left with is merely a fraction of what that whole animal is.

And what I wanted to do with today's episode is not point fingers, not scold people for not taking on this challenge. Because, like I mentioned earlier, those reasons that begin to stack up, they are valid. But if we're looking for the satisfaction of a DIY hunt where I can fully say and pin that metal on my chest saying that this was a hunt that I did from beginning to end.

This is that final chapter. And for those that are also looking at it [00:11:00] saying as for myself, my skill set is going to be the payment that I now know and I now have the understanding on how to butcher an animal. Butcher it in such a way that my family can eat it, that it's stuff that I don't have to change my diet in order to enjoy it, but it becomes right, it flows seamless into my diet of what I already currently make, whether it's just steak and burger, whether it's, we want the roasts, whether we want the intricate little cuts where we want to savor the bits from the gut and the parts that usually leave.

Cast off to the side that we're able to fully elevate that animal. This is where that self expression of The culinary adventure can step up. This can be that final chapter that really excels things So tonight this is an encouragement on taking some ownership with your harvest This is [00:12:00] for you to try something that you may not have experience in.

I'm giving you the green light To try something else. I'm giving you the green light to admit I don't know what I'm doing but I'm willing to figure it out. just like you would on a piece of property that you've never been to. And lastly, I did receive a few questions that I think we're going to expand on that are going to be super helpful, and I think that's going to help frame up what this episode is going to be.

So I'm going to get into the quest questions here. First one, actually SirChooch had a bunch of them. He's a follower at SirChooch here on Instagram. He lays out a couple of them. First one that I thought was very interesting. Head up or head down. When I'm getting that and I want to age it for a while, do I want to hang it from the head up or do I want to hang it with the head down?

Which way do I need to go? Which is the best? And... Understanding [00:13:00] this I have my own personal preference. And in fact, this one is going to really be on personal preference. You're going to have people from head up camp. You're going to have people from head down camp, and then you're going to have some outliers that are also doing their own thing, claiming to have a better result.

Of this, of the three that I'm going to talk about today, they are uniquely. They've got their own qualities are going to help out. They each are beneficial. Neither one is less than or greater than the other. It's merely just the way that you want to do it. And so you take the guys that they got a single rope, they got a tree, they're going to hang it up from the neck.

That reason what they're doing is after they've field dressed the deer, they're wanting to hang the neck up high and have. The butt and low because when you feel dressed, you come in through the back quarter there, [00:14:00] you come up through the anus, getting that out, you come through the belly. Everything comes out that end.

So by going head up and hanging that down, you're going to drain a lot of fluid. Whatever fluid does excrete from the esophagus, from the the lining wall, or the belly wall, the muscles there, any leakage that you have from the muscles at that point, Is going to flow right on out is going to continue to drip onto the floor, leaving, drying out the carcass quickly.

I do know guys that if they do spray out their deer, this is also a way they want to do it because it is going to help flush everything out. I would say head up would also be beneficial to someone who had a shot that went a little bit too far back. If you had. And where he got shot into the gut, so you got an angle away or an angle [00:15:00] towards and your arrow has to go at a steep angle and it actually does nip either the intestines or the stomach or in the process of you field dressing it, you nip the gallbladder or whatever fluid gets spilled into the cavity, hanging it head high allows you to take just a hose sprayer and spray up into that, flushing all of that fluid, all of that fecal matter, cleaning that as best you can with clean cold water, flushing that out.

And then you're able to let it drip dry. If you then hang it. Head up in a barn or a shed, putting a fan on it, continuing to have air circulate past it is going to be beneficial. Make sure you got something down underneath it, of course, because it is going to continue to drip. So that's the head up camp.

Some people love it. Going along with the head up camp is people who want to then get their [00:16:00] deer mounted and they want to hang up their deer so that. They haven't yet cut out the cape, essentially with head up, you can also take your rope and if it's a trophy animal you're trying to get the cape from and you haven't quite cut it yet, you can take whatever gambrel or rope system and you actually tie the antlers, the base of the antlers and have the body hang from the antlers as opposed to putting And A slipknot or a noose or something on the actual neck of the animal, which would then stretch out the neck, stretch out the hide and ruffle the hairs, making it more difficult for your taxidermist that just keeps things from stretching that keeps things from getting distorted by hanging it from the antlers.

If you still want to have the ability to drain things out, so that would be it would be the head up. And with its modification of antler tie to the rafter, [00:17:00] that's going to be the head up camp. The other side is going to be the head down camp. And actually this is the camp that I'm from because when I get my animal and I've already done my clean, and I've done this even with an animal that I may have nipped the gut or gotten a bit of the intestine.

I'm going to thoroughly flush that animal. I'm not shy about getting water into the cavity. I guess that's another discussion too, that we could also talk about at another time, but I'm one that will flush out my animal because I am going to try to get some moving air across that carcass. I want to make sure that I, not only am I introducing cold air, but I want to make sure I have moving air that's going to whisk any of that away.

Being the meat hunter that I am, I have a gimbrel system with a pulley. And so I cut right behind the Achilles heel. I put the the gambrel right in there. And then I hoist that up on a pulley system to the rafters. And that's gonna help open up the butt end, get [00:18:00] it up high. Hot air rises. And so if I'm trying to cool an animal quickly, my...

My assumption is, or at least my deduction is that's going to help vent that heat quicker out of the body. So if I get a deer and you can almost see it happen, especially if it's a, if it's a cold snap. You've, either you got snow on the ground or it's, we're in the thirties.

When you open that... Deer up and you've pulled out that gut and then you hang it up and you can just see the moisture and you can see the steam and heat radiating off of that animal holding it or putting it head down and then having the haunches Up in the air also allows me to be able to take some cuts and if I need to cut into that pelvis, open up the rump and get to that pelvis so that I can get that pelvis, which is a quite a big bone and get that to [00:19:00] start whisking away heat.

Because bones hold a ton of heat even cutting to the ball joint where then we're exposing the femur or that socket at least in the pelvis. That is a one way to help disperse more of that heat is just exposing that the other and I haven't tried this yet, but there's the pelvic grab where.

A where someone will process their deer, they'll actually pin back the legs and then instead of a gambrel system, they'll have a hook and actually go up through the pelvic cavity and have the animal supported by the pelvis. One reason they're saying that they're doing that is that they let rigor mortis go through the whole animal.

Including the legs aren't being supported, but it's a bone and specifically the pelvis this supporting the animal in the air, allowing the extremities to [00:20:00] relax fuller. The thinking there is that if you're hanging from the legs, that may in, in introduce some sort of stretching or tightening of the muscles.

I haven't necessarily found that, but at the same time. It would be an interesting experiment to see if the pelvic variation would work a little bit better than, say, the leg, the rear leg variation. So there you go. You got head up, but it's it's other variation being from the antlers, and then you have head down with its variation being the pelvis.

I don't think you can go wrong with any of them because it's going to be merely preference and situation that's presented. Sir Church, that was a great question. I love being able to explain that one. When in the field, accuracy and precision count. That's why we switch our slug guns to rifle barrels, tune our arrows, and use a fish finder on the [00:21:00] water.

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What kind of [00:23:00] equipment do I want to be looking at? What's a basic setup? Again, great question. You're going to want to have a spot that you can be able to move the deer around, to be able to bang these larger quarters around, to be able to take the whole carcass, lay it down and break it up if you didn't want to do it from.

The hanging position. So you're going to want to have yourself a nice table. Something that is, waterproof. Something that hopefully doesn't have, there's no porous to it. So nothing can leak into what you're using. You're probably not going to want to use grandma's kitchen table.

You're probably not going to head into the kitchen where your wife can chew you out for that. But... Having some larger cutting boards that you can work on and find a, a towel that you put on underneath, put that on top, and that just helps secure it so you've got a stable platform.

The other one that works out really good is a An eight foot plastic table, a folding table. Those work out great with the exception. You want to get one and you want to raise it up [00:24:00] to a workable level. If you don't raise it up, it's not the first few minutes that you're going to feel it. It's going to be the couple hours later when you're...

Back is screaming at you. And I've talked about that one quite a bit. Raise that up with some blocking underneath both the legs. And that's going to save your back. That's going to be something to just relieve that a little bit. Breaking animals breaks us. And when you get down to the nitty gritty and you're focusing on your knife work.

You're gonna you're gonna be hunched over so raise that up to alleviate that pain I had got a fillet table that I can use in a pinch. I just pull that out kick out the legs It's already at 36 inches and that brings that up nice at counter height level And I can work on whatever cuts on that table.

I can then hose it down. It's non porous, so I can even bleach it and sanitize it, use whatever sanitizer I want to use, so I can [00:25:00] then use it for other things as well. But yeah, large cutting boards, even getting like a sheet of the high density polypropylene. That's one of those dream things that I want.

I want to get a nice big sheet of it that I can lay down on a workbench that I have in my shop. That's one of those things. It's on a list to, to put together. Currently I do have a 4x4 steel table. It's, oh shoot. Maybe two and a half mil. Yeah, it's, it's not flimsy steel, but it's, it was enough that they could, they wrapped basically a table in.

And so now it's just a steel table that I'm able to work on and then actually can get a couple of guys. If we do a big cut night and we've got, three or four deer that we're trying to cut up, it's got enough space that I can get four guys around it and I can just keep dropping off quarters and we can get that work done.

Quite, quite efficiently. Tools that I use specifically, I like a six inch [00:26:00] boning knife, and there's a ton of those kits out and about. You name it, there's going to be an outdoor company that makes it. Having a, a wild game kit that has a boning knife, a fillet knife maybe even a saw on there, or a, a chopper.

That is a great kit to get started, and that could get you through Probably a number of deer. You're going to be looking at steel though. That's not going to be like high level Japanese fillet knife, or you're not going to be looking at a sushi knife or a chef knife. Here. You're going to be looking at something that's a little more flexible and it's got some carbon in it.

I like the semi flex specifically it's like Victorinox and Dexter. You can find them for 20 bucks on Amazon. I got. Shoot, I got five of them from the turkey farm that I resurrected that were in the dulls, dull pile and I, put an edge back on them and they've been running for, shoot, years.

So when we do [00:27:00] show up to a group cut, I just bring the bag of them and drop them down. What's nice about that high carbon steel is you're going to be able to put an edge on it dull quicker. But having a steel right next to you, having a hone right next to you is going to make that doable. These are working blades.

We're not looking for being able to cut super fine at this point, we're cutting meat and being able to hone that real quick because that the steel is softer is an excellent way to be able to keep putting an edge back on that without having to sharpen it. You're just honing it back to a workable edge.

And then continue on with your cutting. So yeah, those are those little 6 inch boning knives. Those are good to have. The next one's gonna be like a long slicer. I have actually I got it from a thrift shop. I really like the handle. It was a walnut handle. But it's got, a thin blade on it.

Again, like high carbon steel. It's [00:28:00] maybe... Eight inches long, but it's got a bull nose. And when bull nose is that it doesn't come to an drastic point that you would see on the boning knife or like a chef's knife. This rounds up to the top. And so it does have a point, but it kind of sticks up from the handle.

And it's really round at the end. What I like about that is if I'm going to be cutting steak, I wouldn't want to have a longer and wider blade and make sure I get wider. I'm looking at the height of it. The height of the blade is different than the thickness of the blade. I don't need the thickness to be very big.

Cause I'm going to be cutting steaks from this, but I want something that's got some length and some height, and that's going to allow me to make a. A really good big push through the muscle and then one draw back. I don't, from when I'm making steaks, I don't want to saw through muscle. I want to have as much of a good like push.

Pull one final [00:29:00] two step cut, and that's going to give me a clean edge. And that clean edge is going to translate into a better presentation, better searing for when I'm trying to get to those steaks. If I saw things up and that's where things get wonky. So those are two things that I want to get.

Like I've mentioned already a hone, or I want to be able to have a steel or a hone and a lot of those kits come with one already. Again, you can find one on Amazon, super cheap. More and more, you could probably find them even In cutlery kits that you've already got, or even, going to Meyer or a big box store, you'll be able to find them there as well.

But just something that you can then take and run your, the, your blade. over that to bring that edge back up because what tends to happen is that you're taking your softer steel knife and it's going into bone, you're pushing a long bone, you're going to be into some tendons, you're going to be into some silver skin and that slowly works away [00:30:00] at that edge.

And then yeah, cutting on a steel table, especially when I'm cutting with my guys, I tell them like work on a piece for a few minutes and then grab the hone and then just do three swipes each side. And that just brings it back. And it's amazing how, if you don't use that hone for a little while, and then you drag it across that blag stand it back up the, how effortlessly you can cut through meat once again.

So keeping that edge nice and high is going to be good. Some sort of saw, some sort of saw that you're going to be able to use. I have used, I got it off of a again, an estate sale. I love estate sales for a lot of my butchery stuff, or even just some of my kitchen stuff. Find an old pieces that are just super.

Super fun. You just don't find them everywhere. So I found actually a Japanese hacksaw. Some old boy at his estate sale had this chrome plated nickel [00:31:00] hacksaw. It's adjustable in length. As in I can put on long blades or I can put on shorter blades and I can then add whatever hacksaw I wanted. You put the blade on and then you can tension.

It's got a little wing nut in order to tighten that down so it compacts really nice so that it can fit into an easy to go bag, but at the same time, I pull it back out. So even if you just go pick up from Tractor Supply or Home Depot or whatever you got, if you got a hand hacksaw, that's probably going to be your cheapest route.

It's going to be most effective. I like... A multi use blade as far as something with fine enough teeth that's going to be able to clean cut through bone. But they at the same time has enough tooth that I'm not going to spend forever trying to get through it. I'm not cutting through pipe here.

I'm cutting through bone. Yeah, it's pretty dense, but at the same [00:32:00] time it's not going to be like a copper pipe. It's not going to be like a steel pipe. But having that multi use... Tooth count like mid range on there. I'm able to get a good push through ribs I'm gonna be able to cut through vertebrae Those are mainly the ones that I am going to be cutting through now if you're gonna keep your shanks whole I have been cutting the meat off the narrowing end and putting that into ground and then being able to then take off a bit of that bone, shortening up that cut makes it nicer for being able to freeze up, makes it nicer for presentation when I've got it.

I did one this summer where basically I took a shank and made it into what I called Thor's hammer of rendition that they've done with beef shank. And I just did it with Benny. But at the same time, dropping that length of bone helped for. For being able to smoke it, for being able to cook it and actually have something presentable for the plate.[00:33:00]

So having a saw, just even a hand hack saw, works out good. If you're looking to really speed things up, if you've already got a sawzall or a plugin Yeah, plugin Sawzall, that works out well. And you can get a blade specific for. For cutting deer, I, when I go I've got a, it's a cheapy sawzall and I go get again, the mid range multipurpose blade, but I always use a clean blade or I always use the same blade for using on my deer.

Once I start seeing where I start pulling off paint chips off the side of that blade, I think maybe I need to retire this one just because, actually put this one towards the use of the multipurpose and, I could run it out through a number of things, but I try to keep those blades separated from from the multi use blades.

I'm not going and grabbing the rust, the one that I used on, rusty nails on on a pallet that I'm now going to want to [00:34:00] be able to cut my meat on. I always want a fresh blade when I do that. Is there some concern with that type of metal on, the being edible? I guess I'm not finding where it's going to be an issue because I'm cutting through bone.

I'm not cutting through meat on that. Both saws, you're not going to be cutting through meat. You're going to score meat with your knife, and it's merely the bone that you're cutting through. So I haven't found a spot where that's going to be a problem. But having that sawzall, if you've already got one of those, it does make quick work of taking apart the different quarters.

One, and shoot, once you run your blade down the rib section, and then you just merely have, you just touch that trigger, and that quick saw action's gonna, blow right through that. That rib, it'll be quick to take off those side quarters. With with CWD being a thing too, I've got a different wrap up where I try not to puncture any of [00:35:00] the.

the spinal column all the way down to the tail. Eventually I do have to cut the pelvis off and I go through one of those. I go through one of the vertebrae connections. There's an Atlas joint at the head, which is an easy where you can plunge the knife in and actually take the head off without needing needing a saw and then same thing down by the pelvis.

There's a spot there where the pelvis meets the actual spine and you can then sink your blade in and get a clean cut without having to use a sawzall. keeping bone dust, keeping shards away from, cleaner cuts means cleaner product at the very end. So yeah, those are just some of the tools that I use a hose and a sprayer lots of.

Lots of cloths making sure that you're keeping your hands clean. I've used gloves mainly for a way that it does keep me cleaner. And as that process goes on, I used to be a guy that was like, Nah, you don't need gloves. This is, [00:36:00] I'm in this stuff. I'm one with my food. And now I'm like, you know what?

I want to be able to use my phone without having... Gunk all over it or I get called away a bunch And so having some gloves be able to take those off and then have clean hands afterwards is it's always nice Just speeds things along what I have found too is the trick and I think I picked this I forgot where I picked this up at When I put on a pair of gloves, what I'll also do is take another set of gloves 'cause they're coming a pack of a hundred.

And in a season you can, for people who are only doing two or three deer, you might be able to get away with, two or three seasons using these gloves. I then take another pair of gloves and I put those over the top. So I'm essentially wearing two pairs of gloves. So I get to a point where I do need to clean up.

I pull my hand, I pull my layer of gloves off, and I now have Two gloves that are like ready to go. They haven't been exposed And so that's just one way if you've got to stop go one way that you can refresh your gloves [00:37:00] Maybe it's your you know, you're doing hide work and you're pulling on skin or you get something on you They're like, yeah, I need to get this off pull those off and you got a fresh set right there so those are just a few of the basic tools that I'm using for My processing.

So thank you, sir. Chooch for those another one that I got here from field to table at from field to table on Instagram. He he said, Hey, one thing that's holding me back right now is I don't know the name of the cuts and this one I do find like this is one that can be a problem because you get People in different regions calling things different names.

Yes, overseas they call different cuts different things. We call the, we, for our for instance, the eye round. Of a beef is also called [00:38:00] an inside round. I think I think Australia refers to more of the inside round and the U S we'll lean towards the eye of round, but there's one muscle that's got two names right there.

And in fact, that's also called a salmon cut in. England because of its appearance. And so that's one cut that automatically has three names. And guys are going to fight about that. Guys are going to go back and forth. It's not an inside round. It's called an eye round or well, it's not an eye round.

It's called a salmon cut. And there's room for bickering because essentially they're all right. So hanging up on a name. I would say what I think would be most beneficial is understanding the cut and its characteristics. That's going to be more important than whatever it's called. I know I even got called out, it was quite a while ago as a comment, and I even forget who made it.

But, A guy was [00:39:00] telling me that, yeah, you called the sirloin what I call like the football roast or in England they call it the knuckle and I've referred to it as the sirloin and I was told that is wrong terminology that it was then called the sirloin cap. When, and then I, I went back on that and I'm looking at it and I'm like no, it's not the sirloin cap because the cap is on top of that actual muscle.

It's something I guess we could continue to fight about. It's something that we could continue to bicker about, but I understand that cut. Responds really well to quicker heat that piece does not like to be cooked for a long period of time And so by using that cut I don't focus necessarily on the name But I focused on what I'm gonna do with it.

What I do really like to do with that is Make it into sliced sandwich meat when it's [00:40:00] roasted, and then I get a sear on the outside, and I get some heat to it, and I get it right there to just about a medium, and then I let it cool down, put it in the fridge, and let it stiffen back up, and then I take a slight long slicing knife, and I can get long dragging sweeps on that muscle, oh man I don't think I need to buy roast beef anymore if I can make roast of any off of that sirloin or that football roast or that that knuckle as they know it in the UK, a great pastrami one, I like to use that cut for pastrami, but then we even get into the leg where we have the rounds and we have the top round and we've got, or what guys will call the, also the outside round.

And then we've got the bottom round and those cuts. It's not necessarily the name that I think we should be getting hung up on. I think it should be the characteristics. What is it that we do with those cuts is the most important thing, because that's going to get [00:41:00] people to use them. I love where from Field to Table is saying Hey, I don't know what I don't know, and I'm, Having some sort of guide, having some sort of ability to know what to do with this is going to be helpful.

And yeah, for you labeling things in the freezer is going to be helpful when you pull them out. You want to know what that is. You want to give it a name that you can understand, or a name that you can translate into something else. Because even in the domestic world, the FDA has, breakdown numbers for what they call each specific cut.

But once it leaves the facility... And it goes to a retail position. It goes to a retail butcher. It's all names are open. Like you'll see people call things that, just to make them seem more amazing. One of my favorites is the, when you get a a bone in ribeye or you get a boneless ribeye [00:42:00] that is also called a Delmonico.

And it seems like if you add the If you add Delmonico onto a ribeye's name, it's going to automatically go up in price. That same bone in ribeye, if you leave it long, they call it tomahawk. A tomahawk is just a way to add dollars and cents to the cut. You're buying a bone people. When you buy a tomahawk, you're buying the bone.

And if that's what you want, if you want to buy that bone to for the presentation, hats off to you, do it. You'll love it. And don't be apologetic for it. But I just want you to realize that yes, you can get a ribeye without the bone and it'll still be amazing. So as far as name goes, find something that works for you.

If someone that you happen to follow or you've gone through a video and somebody's describing it in a way that makes sense to you, go with them. [00:43:00] Because there's always a, there's always our ability to then translate that for other people. So yeah, those were some of the in depth questions that I got. Oh, that's why I was going to go back on to is then when we can get into some other stuff, like when it comes to wrapping what can I do for wrapping up my venison? And, there's always the good, better, best that I look at that methodology that there's a good way to do things.

There's a better way to do things. And then there's a best way to do things. And in my opinion, these three kind of cover it. The first is a good, and that's going to be Saran Wrap and Butcher's Paper. It is cheap. It is effective. And it will last you forever. As far as the roll of butcher paper that you get, it's not a huge expenditure to get this.

Same thing with the wrap. You can get in a big ol roll and have you a setup where you can drag it across the [00:44:00] table, put the piece of meat on, slice the Pactix Wrap, fold it up. Label it up, little masking tape, and away it goes. Those little parcels do super well. And the idea, too, is getting all the air away from it.

And that's where that Saran Wrap comes in. If you put two layers of that Saran Wrap on there, and then hit it with some butcher's paper, that's going to last a long time in the freezer. Now, one of those two is because you're wrapping things up and you do have the butcher paper on there. If you use and abuse those cuts as they roll around in that freezer, they get knocked around.

If you're constantly in there trying to dig through and rifle through to find what you need, that may introduce a spot for freezer burn to happen. You could puncture the paper. You could get into the saran wrap and into the meat. It could open it up and introduce a little freezer burn. It may not get you the year, excuse me.

It may not get you the two year or a [00:45:00] year and a half in the freezer before you start to get some of that freezer burn. But at the same time, it will buy you. We'll buy you time. My good friend Dustin, he uses Ziploc bags for all of his ground. He really likes that methodology where he puts the ground in a Ziploc bag.

He's got it portioned out the way that he likes it seals that up real nice, takes extra care to make sure that seal is sealed, flattens them out. And now he's got his little patties that he can just stack up in his freezer. So those are probably the most cost effective good ways to go about it. The next two are related and that you're going to be going with a vac sealer.

And so if you go with one of the the vacuum style, which is going to be the one that sits on your countertop, you get a roll of bags and you can seal one side, you can cut the bag to length. You put your meat on the inside and then you Put it into that, that, or you put the end into the vac sealer, [00:46:00] it draws the air out.

It actually uses a vacuum system to draw out that air. And then once it's drawn out enough of that air, it'll seal that bag. It's always good to double up with a seal on that particular unit, but then you have a sealed plastic bag with your meat inside of it, and that. That plastic is usually a little bit thicker than the saran wrap.

It's going to be a little more sturdy. It is see through. You can write on those bags. You get a sharpie and you can write right on the side with permanent marker. That is a great way to be able to use use that setup. Not only does it can be used for just your meat, but you can use it and whatever you're cooking in your household, it's a great for leftovers.

If you make a big pot of chili, you've got a whole bunch left over. You don't want to eat it for the next week and a half. You can portion it out in those [00:47:00] bags. Now with that liquids do get a little tricky because of the vacuum setting on those because it draws the air Out of the bag as opposed to any another method they also tend to.

Just be finicky if you are lackluster in your approach. If you start to get lazy in putting that seal in, that's where you're going to have bad seals. So you want to make sure that you are paying extra attention so that when you do put that meat into the freezer, you've got good seals and good suction.

And the third way, the great way, is going to be with a chamber vac that is using atmospheric pressure as opposed to vacuum pressure. I picked up one of these units because I'm the, the, When it comes to my friends group, they come to my place in order to cut up their deer. And at the same time, like when I'm trying to put four deer in and I want to be able to seal all these pieces up, or I want to put up leftovers [00:48:00] or I'm trying some different things, especially when it comes to curing stuff, I want to be able to have that vacuum ability.

On the meat industry side, I've used one in the past. So that's where I was like, I want one for my house. I want to figure out where to buy it. So that was definitely a buy once cry once unit. I had to spend a good chunk of money to get them the unit that I've got. I ended up getting the made or the meet your maker one, the white.

White one. I think it's a 13 inch bar on it. But at the same time, that chamber vac it pulls air out a different way. You put your bag, you buy essentially the bags made up. You can buy different dimensions. And the difference between these bags and say the vacuum... The vacuum bags is that they're a lot cheaper.

The vacuum bags, when you buy the roll is expensive. The money is in the bag, not in the unit itself. Where it's flipped on its head when it comes to the chamber vac, [00:49:00] the money is in the unit, the money's not in the bags. So I can buy bags. On the cheap, I can buy them in a, bulk thousand count.

And essentially each bag is then at that point, like three to five cents, as opposed to, Where we're getting more into the 50 to 75 cents went off the roll and then you lose some because you got to make You got to move things around or you can you have to cut off and trim off a bunch of stuff You don't have that necessarily on the chamber back side of it Now when I put that I put the meat in the bag and then I put the bag in the bar When I close that lid, what happens is it draws a vacuum on the chamber, and so it's not pulling air out, but what it's doing is it's pulling out the air, creating a vacuum in that chamber, sealing the bag now that everything has adapted to that Specific vacuum or [00:50:00] that atmosphere seals it, and then it returns the normal atmosphere that returns the normal level of pressure to To the chamber and that's where the bag gets sucked down in.

So we create this vacuum, make the seal, and then return the normal atmosphere. And that is how that's made. It's a slick way to use when you're doing liquids. It's a great way to use for leftovers for, getting a very good seal on stuff. The bags again are made they're made pretty cheap at the same time.

They can. Stand being moved around. Can they break? Can they pop? Can they get tears and punctures? Absolutely. So that is one where you do have to make sure that you're being wise in how you stack those in there. The last little bit that I want to make sure I touched on was grinders and when I have found grinders, again, when I first started, when I started in the meat industry doing domestic meats I had a [00:51:00] chance to use a grinder where I could put meat through so fast that it takes me longer to clean the unit than it does for me to actually grind the burger or the sausage or whatever that is.

Large units, industrial units, and They're awesome to use. It gets the job done for you and then going and then using some of the residential models they have their purpose. It depends on what you want out of your grind. If you're looking to have. A family event. This is something that you do as a family every year, where you grind, you spend the time grinding up, everybody brings their one horse or their their, 0.

75 horse units or their, the countertop model, where they can screw it on and even just use the hand crank. Like those are. Wonderful units to use when you're doing one to two deer [00:52:00] a year, or if you get a bunch of them together, it's going to be able to be used. In a fashion where you get a bunch of them, many hands makes the work light.

But when you're working on your own and let's say you're trying to do upwards of 40 or 50 pounds or you've got several deer that you're waiting and you're accumulating the amount of mints in order to put into the grind, you're going to want something that has the power that has the capacity to something that's got the punch.

And so again, yeah, I went with the Meet your maker version I went with the 1. 5 horse I went is big of a countertop model that I could go with now I know there's burrow there's Hobart there's a Bunch of brands that are commercial based that do make like restaurant style countertops. If you could find one of those [00:53:00] on Facebook marketplace or Craigslist, scoop that sucker up.

If it's sold for use and it's a price that you're like, you know what, that's not terrible. Pick it up because it's going to be worth its weight in gold. I picked up this one. Yeah, it was a new purchase I got, but I went for the biggest model that I could find. That was the 1. 5 horse. I have not had an issue with silver skin.

I have not had an issue with it getting clogged up. My. Again, good buddy who wanted to come over and make some grind. He was like, I didn't do a very good job of going through and getting silver skin off this. And I've got shank pieces that are in here. And I was like this will be a good test of the unit.

We'll we'll see when we push it through and. As I was pushing stuff through I threw the pieces in and I was going to see if he even noticed. And he said, Hey, did you put those pieces in? I want to see what it'll do to your machine. And I was like, dude, they've been through already. Like you didn't even notice it didn't even slow [00:54:00] down.

So that was the good part of it. There is a 32 gauge throat on that because that's a lot of these two are gauged by throat size and the biggest one I could find at least in the residential side was a 32 gauge. They do make a 22 gauge, which is just a little bit smaller. And then I think it gets down into the 10, 10 gauge, and that's going to be the attachments that you can get for like your KitchenAid or like a one horse unit.

What is nice about the KitchenAid attachment or the smaller units that you can keep like in your pantry or you can keep in your kitchen is if you've got to make a. A five pound batch and not try to get a whole bunch of equipment out and bagging and do different stuff. If you just want to make fresh ground for that week or for that meal, use those attachments.

I made some wild pork bolognese the other day and I used a [00:55:00] rump and I used a couple shanks. I just cleaned them up real nice and I used the attachment on our KitchenAid for the grinder. It worked awesome. But it was only like a five pound batch once I get above that five pound batch I start getting into like the 10 and the 20s where I'm gonna be making something or I want to be able to bag it Up, that's when I haul out the big hoss.

But other than that, it's like those smaller units do have their purpose So that was also a great question added in by I think sir Chooch added that on he had a lot of really good questions to be able to talk about Today and so yeah when it comes to grinder size bigger is better It's hard to get around that, but at the same time, all of our needs are a little different.

So depending on how much you are doing, that will then tell you which size you should go for. So there you have it. That is an hour's worth of DIY processing. I hope that today I was as clear as mud when it comes to [00:56:00] some of those questions or things that you should do. Ultimately, I want you to get your hands dirty.

Ultimately. If you have not taken on that challenge, consider this your encouragement to do it, tag me in something that you're doing or shoot me a DM and ask me some questions or, shoot, YouTube is a great way to go. I myself have a couple videos that are up on the Sportsman's Empire YouTube channel.

Those two videos, I do shoulders and I do The hind leg, I break, I lay out how I break those down and then eventually how I'm going to use them. That is a great resource for you to be able to watch, sit back with a beer and just take a few notes. Even take that video, press pause. When you get to a section, make your cut, get to where you need to go and then press play again and then press pause and, catch up along your journey.

If you look up how to process a deer, [00:57:00] you're going to get a thousand and one hits on YouTube. Use those resources. People made those. Are they the best? Some of them are not. Some of them are a bit of a hack job, but at the same time, there's a lot on there that you can glean from. Take from this video, take from that video, take from my video, whatever you can to make it worthwhile for you to do.

Ultimately, that's the challenge. I want us to be able to take our DIY hunt to the next level and to make that a DIY meal that when you sit down with family and friends, the story doesn't have to end with, and I shot it. The story ends with them saying, what a delicious way for us to finish out this hunt.

So yeah, whatever you plan on doing this year, whether it is going to be going to a processor because of time or you are manning and womaning up and being able to take on this challenge, you're going to cut this thing up. You might need to get a few pieces of [00:58:00] equipment and whatever style of knife that you are going to use on this, make sure that it is very sharp.