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Butchering at home - Great Photos!

1928 Views 19 Replies 9 Participants Last post by  GeorgeK
I stumbled across this website while looking for instructions on how to put up a good hay stack!

Butchering a Pig

It appears to be a documentary of a photojournalist in Romania but, the pictures are fantastic. Be sure to also click on the link at the bottom of the page to see them making sausage!

And...if you care about haystacks, you can see pictures of them building them too. A really, really neat site.
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A very cool site. Thank you for posting :)
it's a bit different for a smaller pig. Thanks for the post
that's a neat site , thanks
is burning the hair off the pig a common thing to do?

I've never heard of that before.
pcdreams we always scalded them and scraped them.But their way sure would be easy.I'm surprised they didn't keep the Blood.

big rockpile
If our folks had witnessed us butchering a hog like these people did, they would have given us a lecture that would have lasted a life time.
I don't think it's common here in the US to burn the hair off. Obviously things are done differently in different cultures.

Being "pig" folks, I thought ya'll might be interested. I found it interesting from a cultural sense as well as the anatomy of the pig, time/work involved in doing it oneself, etc. I did not post it as a tutorial...simply a unique link.

I found the sausage page particularily interesting.

Any of you eat your pigs ears?! :haha: Feeding them to the dogs as treats doesn't count! ;)
LuckyGRanch said:
I don't think it's common here in the US to burn the hair off. Obviously things are done differently in different cultures.
Any of you eat your pigs ears?! :haha: Feeding them to the dogs as treats doesn't count! ;)
Culturally we are hispanic and we eat the ears, tails, and feet. We eat most of the organs in various recipes. The head is mined for meat- no pun intended. We leave very little to waste. We gave a sow away to neighbors a few months ago and the waste they left was astonishing. We also had a friend over once to help butcher and she just kept throwing things out. :rolleyes: I didn't want to be rude so I kept silent but it isn't the way we prefer to work.
didn't mean to offend. I was just curious as I haven't had any experience with pigs. :)
I wasn't offended in the least. I really enjoyed looking at all the pictures. I was surprised at the way they went at cutting the hog up. My ancesters all came from various European countries and not one bit of meat was discarded, other tan the lights (lungs). The neighbors picked them up whenever we butchered and they ate them. The big difference was we always scalded and scraped our hogs, regaurdless of how large they were. Dad butchered a 600 pound sow once. He dug a deppression in the ground and lined it with straw. the sow was rolled over into it after she bleed out, and straw was piled over the top of her. Boiling water was poured all over the straw soaking the sow. after a minute or more, not real sure how long, straw was pulled back to see if she'd scrape OK. After another dose of hot water in the places they thought nessesary, the sow was rolled out onto boards and scraped. A set of rope barb wire streechers were used to pull her up into the extra tall home made tripod for cutting up.
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When we butcher a hog to cook underground we burn the hair off. We use a blow torch and a garden hose. The torch singes the hair and the top layers of skin. After torching an area, we run water over it while we scrape with a dull knife. We do sections at a time til it's done. Then we wash the hog off with cold water.
When we butcher hogs for the smoker or for the freezer we like to scald and scrape or skin them.
I have not tried the straw method, but I think I will give it a try!
Are the guts still in when you're burning/scalding? How long do you have before you need to get the guts out so they don't affect meat taste? This is of course assuming it's been adequately bled out.

One of my very favorite indulgences are pickled pigs feet! I absolutely love them. Anyone have a receipe that rivals the $5/jar ones in the store?! :D
We leave the guts in when we scald and when we use the torch. With two of us working, it goes pretty quick.

I love the pickled trotters too! Since we only butcher 4 or so hogs a year, I have been making pickled pork out of some of the roasts. I just cube the meat or cut into chunks, simmer in the pickling liquid until tender and chill for three days.
For 3 lbs of meat
3 C. water
3 c. white vinegar
2 onions, cubed
6 whole cloves
1/2 tsp allspice
2 bay leaves
4 tsp kosher salt
10 peppercorns
1 TBs sugar

Sometimes I add a couple cloves of garlic and some red pepper flakes. ALSO, sometimes I use the same amount of water and vinegar, but instead of adding the whole cloves, allspice, bayleaves and peppercorns, I use already made pickling spice. About 2 Tbs. :)
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In my experience the 2 to 300 pound pig was shot then stuck with a butcher knife inthe jugular vein in the throat. The large butchering kettle was full of boiling hot water before the pig was shot. While it was bleeding out we dipped the hot water out of the kettle and poured it into a wooden 50 gallon barrel that we had leaning against the end of a heavy table We used made from two wide planks on saw horses. The hog was lifted up on the table and a hook with a wide wooden handle was hooked into the snout. Two overgrown boys got on the table and slid the pig down in the barrel. (A tablespoon of lye was always put in the water first) We would dunk the pig three or four times revolving it as we did. About then Dad said take him out, and we pulled it out on the table. Dad checked the places difficult to scrape with his butcher knife to be sure it was scalded enough to scrape. If not he went back in for a couple more dips. If it was Ok, we turned him end for end and repeted the process with the oppisite end in the water. As soon as it was scalded we all got around the table and scraped all the hair of the pig leaving it clean and white. Holes were cut through the rear hocks between the tendons and the leg bone. We lifted the pig up and put each hole made in the leg over a hook in the of two legs of our home made tripod. The pigs nose would be very close to the ground. Clean water was used to wash any loose hair or dirt off the carcuss. A dishpan was put under the head and it was neatly cut off into the spine. We had a hand meat saw that we used to cut through the neck bone and the head dropped into the dishpan. That went into the kitchen for the ladies to work on. Now the stomach is split open and the guts are pulled out into a wash tub. You do this without ever cutting a gut. The left hand it put between the guts and the belly you are cutting open and the knife points downward and cuts between your fingers. By now you shouldn't be more than a half hour past the gunshot.
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I'm told that in some oriental countries, anyone with more than 2 dogs is a rancher.
Thank you for that link. I just read it with my kids and we found it very interesting and informational!
Seems i read once in peurto rico sometimes dogs serve the same function as pigs used to everywhere, in turning garbage into edible meat. I think most all butchers kill bleed then work the outside either dehairing or skinning then remove the entrails. you want to get the dirtier work done before opening the carcass. the same procedure applies to all animals chickens get plucked first then eviscerated
there are over 6 billion people on the planet, somewhere there is a group of people who eat something, some other group doesn't like. Dog meat is common pretty much everywhere except north America and Europe. My understanding is they prefer St Bernards and other larger breeds for the larger cuts of meat.

BETH said:


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