We have also taken the next step in our farming journey and gone through the process of having Freezer 1 (that is the name of one of our cows the other is called Freezer 2. This way we remember that they are not pets) killed and butchered for our use.
We have had some fun learning to be farmers and dealing with our 2 cows which you can read about here. But for the most part they ate the grass in the paddock and other than making sure they had grass, hay, water and mineral supplements we have not done anything else to interfere with them being cows. They were cows and we watched them being cows.
Before you read further I will warn you that there are photos of a dead cow (it is a distance photo so not gory) and the carcass as it was processed. I will also be talking about the process. If this is not for you pop back tomorrow for the last installment of A Home Made Christmas.
Freezer 1 spent the morning eating grass and doing what cows do. This was what she was doing when she died. She did not even get up. The guy who did our home kill shot her from his car so she had no stress before she died. If we had sent her away to be processed she would have been rounded into a pen. loaded on a truck, driven to an abattoir, unloaded with other animals and sent into a noisy factory to meet her fate. For us having it all done at home was the best option.
|Her last morning spent eating grass.|
|Freezer 1 upside down feet removed and the butcher beginning to|
remove the hide.
|Cut in half|
|Hoisting them higher so they can be|
swung into the back of the cool room.
|In go the 4 pieces|
Five days later the butcher cam back to cut it into all of the portions we wanted. As he cut it up I took it inside and used our cryovac machine to pack it all and put it in the freezer. We asked to keep all of the bones and kept a lot for our selves for Jessie and to make stock with, and we gave some to our neighbors.
The butcher charges $1.75 kg plus $25 to get rid of the intestines, head and hide. It is a lot of meat to get through so the family will be getting some too. The butcher made us our sausages, mince rolled roasts and corned meats all on the spot too so we have a good variety in the freezer.
We have sampled some sausages and steak so far and both were a hit. Over the Christmas break I want to do a cost comparison to take into account the cost of the cow and any hay purchased etc to see what the real cost is.
Overall we are happy with how things went and are looking forward to some eye fillet over Christmas.