No, not the guy with the beard. It's on the table.
If you have ever wondered what almost 700 pounds of beef look like, wonder no more. This is a photo of most of what remained (at this point there was still another section of rib on the delivery truck) of a Aryshire bull that Trent had slaughtered as he begins the process of interbreeding his herd with a line of animals that do a better job of converting grass into milk. Shortly after the butcher dropped this off at the farm this past Saturday, another truck pulled in with the Devon bulls that will replace this once noble beast as the herd's pater familias.
Taking this much meat apart is a pretty big task. The first thing we did was break the legs and loins into primal cuts and put them in the cooler to dry age. Then I took apart the ribs and forequarters and boxed the meat for grinding. The tenderloins will be "wet aged" and sold as steaks. I'm planning to grind 90-100 pounds and turn most of the loins and some of the rounds into Bresaola (cured and air dried beef) when I return to work tomorrow (Thursday).
Now that I look at this picture again, I realize that it does not do a very good job of conveying how big this thing was. The rib cage was big enough to turn into an office chair. The hind legs and loins were easily 140 pounds each. Suffice it to say that I have never butchered anything this big. By comparison, cutting up a hog is child's play.
I'm not complaining, mind you -I love this stuff. It's what I live for. (Wow, that sounds wrong.)