We were given a wonderful gift this weekend: Our friend Conrad had friends visiting from Texas to bow hunt. They took a buck and a doe. Conrad knew things were tight for us this year and when his friends said they would like to give the meat away to someone who needed it, he called us. We took home the doe. She was a lovely, healthy, fat girl who had been shot right neatly through one shoulder and out the other, and she must have just dropped. So the meat was very, very good.
You may remember that I cut and wrapped a lamb last fall, so I had probably way too much confidence in my butchering abilities. I said I would do the cutting myself. I messed up the skinning part. Inexperience combined with inadequate knives meant that I went too deep into the muscle when I started my skinning cuts and it was hard to get back from that. I'm not sure the hide is any good after what I put it through.
But after that, I did pretty well, if I may say so myself. I used the instructions found on Eckrich.org. Very clear, with good photos and idiot-proof instructions. (Good thing.) It's all done now except for the 4 quarts of stock that are right now processing in my pressure canner, then it'll be all done.
I'll do a yield list again, like I did with the lamb, mostly for my own edification:
Breakfast sausage, total 11 pounds
Hamburger, total 8 pounds
Eyes of round, tied into a tender roast, just under 2 pounds
Bottom round, 1-3/4 lb.
Rump for stir fry, 2 packages, total about 2.6 pounds
Top round roast, about 2.6 pounds
Sirloin cubes for venison burgundy*, about 3-1/4 pounds
Bottom round cubes for burgundy*, about 2-2/3 pounds
Loin roasts, tied into a tender roast, just over a pound
Butterfly steaks, total 11 in 2 packages, total just under 4 pounds
7 quarts of canned venison chunks
4 quarts venison stock
rendered venison tallow, about 4-2/3 pounds
Total yield on the meat was about 44 pounds.
I used my trusty 1940s Dormeyer Power Chef mixer with its grinder attachment to grind all the meat for the hamburger and sausage, and it never even got warm. It's amazing.
* This is for Barry's favorite venison dish, which is beef burgundy prepared in a pressure cooker, only of course you use venison instead of beef. I have to say, it is pretty wonderful. It came from Pressure Cooking for Everyone by Rick Rodgers and Arlene Ward, a cookbook my sister in law Roseann recommended.