WHAT DID I GET INTO?
Butchering your own deer is truly gratifying. Your first go at it will pretty much look like a mess. Although, once you get in the habit of tossing over thirty-plus pounds of meat onto the kitchen counter, you’ll see the art behind it. Let me take you through my mind's process of butchering a few venison legs. I won't keep you long, but I want to share my experience with you.
These front legs easily weighed around thirty pounds each. Firstly, I look to inspect the condition of the meat and bones. Anything that looks like it might be on its way to being jerky is caused by prolonged exposure to the air. It's nothing to worry about. Trimming off these bits sums up the first part of the game. I gradually shaved off strips in uniform successions, gradually exposing the meat’s freshness and all the connective tissue. It's like tugging back on strips of thin leather and sliding your knife on the underside, remembering to always slice away from yourself. Even though the kill may have been well dressed in the field, I take my time with this process. Getting familiar with the animal's anatomy and removing any bits of hair are both regular parts of the process.