I wasn't sure what to expect when we picked up our cow the other day. We have split meat other relatives have purchased before, but never went through the whole process all by ourselves. It was rather interesting so I thought I would share the experience with you.
It all started when one of my husband's co-workers wanted to buy half of a cow. A whole cow for two people would have been completely overwhelming for them I am sure, so he asked Cheesehead if he would be interested. Well, if you know Cheesehead at all you'd know he LOVES meat so he was ready to jump at the chance. It sounded rather expensive to me though when I was told it would cost us around $600 for our half. I usually don't spend more than $300 a month for groceries. Where would I put all of that meat anyway? I asked MIL if she'd be interested in 1/4 of a cow and then I felt much better. We knew that individually raised cattle tasted much better than those from the feed lots as we have had it before, so that also helped. No added hormones, less fat. I could do this...
They found a local farmer in the Antigo area who had a cow that was ready. Last time it seemed to take forever, but this time it only took a matter of a few weeks. I suppose that's what happens when you don't have to reserve your animals from the farmer months in advance.
We got the number the week before last of the place where the meat was going to be processed after the farmer brought the cow in. I called it and we were told all of the different choices. We could choose meat thickness, How many per package, what wanted it wrapped in, which types of steaks did we want, ribs or hamburger, soup bones or hamburger,... It was really pretty nice since most of the soup bones from the first time are still in the freezer downstairs. This time I get to choose? Awesome! I just did "standard" sizes of things as I was rather clueless as to what everything they were asking about was anyway. The lady I spoke with on the phone was really very helpful. I asked if we could just get the bones for our dog but get the meat ground into hamburger and they said yes. Double awesome.
Last week Thursday I got the call that our order was ready. The lady told us to bring boxes. I wasn't looking forward to it, because last time all of the meat we got had all these different names on them. Would there be a lot to sort through? I was a bit apprehensive, but gathered the boxes and coolers from the garage and set out on Friday to help with the pick up.
Our halves were neatly separated into stacks of metal crates and everything was ready to go. All we had to do was take our orders out of the crates they brought out with our names on them and put them in our own boxes.
It worked out well that we had hubby's truck with us since we didn't have to bend or stoop to move the meat. I will use a truck for sure next time we do this too. We carried a crate at a time to the tailgate and easily transferred everything into our own containers. It also worked well that we picked up in the winter so we didn't even need coolers, the back of the truck was a very nice freezer transportation unit.
Let me tell you, 1/2 a cow produces a whole lot of meat. This is an inventory of what we got (in standard packed form i.e. 2 per pack, thickness, etc).
Roasts: 3 Arm, 2 Round, 8 Beef Chuck, 2 Rump, 2 Sirloin Tip
Steaks: 2 Porterhouse, 7 Ribeye, 9 Round, 5 Tbone, 5 Sirloin
3 packs of short ribs
2 coolers full of hamburger (sorry, I didn't count those. Not sure I could even count that high ;) )
Thank you for stopping by to chat with me. Please leave me a message, I'd love to hear your thoughts!Cindy