Spring classes started for me this morning with Protein Fabrication, which is (in laymen's terms) butchering meat. It's a bit of a suprise that I signed up to learn about breaking down meat seeing as five to seven years ago I did not eat red meat. It wasn't for ethical or health-related reasons; it just kind of grossed me out in its raw form. So slimy and rubbery. Plus my mom had a tendency to overcook. But these days, things are different. I don't eat much meat truly. I try to always have bacon on hand, but other than that, I only buy meat or poultry when I have something specific I want to make in mind. I've moved far away from being jittery with grease or skin, and I suspect this class will only move me even further.
We started out with pork. Simple stuff really. Although I now have a greater appreciation for the word "butcher" because I butchered my tenderloin, trying to remove the tough, inedible silverskin from it. It was a bit of a juicy mess. Removing the back fat from my pork chops did not go smoothly, but it was only day one, and I have never spent this much time with a piece of raw meat before.
We were assigned to do some readings, look up information on pork and to watch some videos posted on Chef Garvey's Web site. The series of videos on pork follows the piglet from pretty much whole hog (minus the innards) to portion-size cuts. Not going to lie, it was a little shocking at first. There was Drew, the class teacher's aid, with the pig pointing out the kill point in its throat and then, yes, sawing the head off. It ended somewhat dramatically with him snapping its neck. I'm not sure I'm up to that. I'm not even sure I'm up to jabbing a live lobster between the eyes to snuff out its life, but if I'm eating it, shouldn't I be able to kill it? Sebastian and Wilbur deserve a little more respect than what I give them, I think. Trussing a pork tenderloin ... that I can do. I'm already working out a plan involving a dry rub. Now all I need is a guinea pig or two--and not to cook although I have eaten guinea pig (tender dark meat, very tasty).