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Whole Beast Butchery: The Complete Visual Guide to Beef, Lamb, and Pork Hardcover – November 16, 2011
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-David Chang, chef/owner of Momofuku
Both in restaurants and at home, interest in eating well-raised animals is resurgent for reasons of quality and health. In hundreds of pictures and clear, easy-to-understand text, Ryan Farr demystifies the lost art of whole animal butchery. Whole Beast will be an essential reference for a generation of young cooks.
-Daniel Patterson, chef-owner of Coi
Having trained under a great butcher, I don't hand out praise lightly but Ryan Farr has blown me away with his passion for his craft. This book will be an indispensable resource for aspiring chefs and butchers and a valued book in my library as well.
-Michael Tusk, chef-owner of Quince and Cotogna
In an era when more cooks want to take control of their food, eat humanely raised meat more responsibly, and enjoy it more, Ryan Farr's book is essential for its superb photography and clear, concise information on the craft of butchery. It's an invaluable resource for chefs and home cooks who want to make use of all parts of the animals we eat.
-Michael Ruhlman, author of Ruhlman's Twenty and Charcuterie
Ryan has given us a thorough master class in how to choose, prepare, and utilize whole animals in this practical and instructive exploration into the craft of the butcher. Start with sourcing local, sustainably raised meat beyond the supermarket; this book shows you how to make the most of it.
-Chad Robertson, chef-owner of Tartine and Bar Tartine and author of Tartine Bread
About the Author
Ryan Farr is the owner and founder of 4505 Meats, where he makes artisanal sausages and his patented chicharrones, and teaches sell-out butchery classes for home and professional cooks. He lives in San Francisco.
Ed Anderson is a photographer specializing in food and the people who make it. He lives in Petaluma, California.
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Top Customer Reviews
The book is divided into three main parts - beef, lamb and pork. Each section begins with a clear schematic the various parts of each animal. Each schematic is then reproduced in miniature at the top of each ensuing page, keeping the reader oriented as to where in the animal the current photos originate. I for one, found this extremely useful
And what photos! Each one is clear, detailed and nicely laid out, accompanied by short and concise notes. It's harder than you might think to describe in words accurately how to break down an animal carcass. Believe me, I've read some other texts that leave you so confused, you don't know which end is up. Not here. Farrs descriptions are smart, pithy and to the point. Not to mention plentiful.
One aspect that this book doesn't cover (nor does it claim to) is the livestock side of things. Farr assumes you will be picking up your carcass from a local butcher. He offers no advise or instruction on how to slaughter a live animal, something many of us small scale livestock farmers need. But there are other good texts for that such as The Complete Book of Butchering, Smoking, Curing, and Sausage Making: How to Harvest Your Livestock & Wild Game by Philip Hasheider. Together with Whole Beast Butchery, these two texts are all an amateur butcher needs to get started. Thanks Ryan! Great job!
The guide is confusing for several reasons
- The pigs used in the book is killed at a young age and hence smaller than normal kill outs and therefore some of the cuts suggested end up as enormous joints on a normal pig.
- The pigs is whole rather than split in half which means a lot of flicking through pages to get to the correct stage.
- It is not always clear when two different methods of cutting up are performed on the corresponding halves of the pig.
- Quite a few of the instructions end half way and do not describe what to do next or use unclear instructions (i.e. remove the featherbone probably clear to a butcher but not to a relative novice).
So overal not quite the guide I had expected from the description. Not useful for someone with basic butchering skills and probably midly informative for someone who understands what is going on in the different pictures.
hanging it for ageing the meat, The proper way to freeze your meats, making sausage
just loaded with a lot of info that I enjoyed and you will also
I like the author's mentality of even if your cut does not look like the books picture, it is not wrong! He encourages people to stretch out and provides online resources for more ideas of cuts.
Admittedly, the shoulder and hams cuts are hard to do. But after the first go around, you get the idea.
I followed the book to the letter with the first pig. Then changed up some things for the second and third pig to fit my household.
I really like the French pork chops and increasing the yield of bacon as a result of Frenching.
The pork porterhouse steaks are awesome.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Is not really as good as I think it was going to be.Published 4 months ago by Umberto Moreno Velandia
It was very helpful in butchering both a side of beef and pork.Published 8 months ago by Senor Cardgage
Was hope for more information about grading and yields, should of purchased the meat buyers guide instead.Published 9 months ago by Amazon Customer