As an educator my favorite service is in helping to organize and lead workshops. We can come to you, or work with you to find a location and animal. Each workshop can be geared to your specific needs and interests.

Whole Animal Slaughter (10-15 people) 3 hrs

– I lead the group through the process of slaughtering, scalding/skinning (participatory), and eviscerating an animal.

Whole Animal Butchery (up to 15 people) 3-4 hrs

– A participatory breakdown of a hog, mutton or goat to portioned cuts and a discussion of the craft and science of butchery. We discuss and I demonstrate different styles of cutting. How the animal’s life effects the quality of the meat, including the way muscle use and movement effects the texture and flavor of the meat. The science and benefits of hanging and aging meat. How to think about curing and cooking different cuts, and more.

Charcuterie (up to 15 people) plus materials, all day

-In the morning we have a participatory breakdown of a hog, mutton, or goat carcass into portioned cuts and a discussion of the crafty and science butchery. We discuss and I demonstrate different styles of cutting. How the animals life effects the quality of the meat including the way muscle use and movement effects the texture and flavor of the meat. The science and benefits of hanging and aging meat.

– In the afternoon we have participatory session of putting the various cuts under cure (including sausage making, dry curing, brining, and smoking) and a discussion of the history, craft, and science of curing meat. I describe the origins of curing meet, situating the process in its historical roots as a way of preserving meat, emphasizing the humble nature of curing meats and the idea that with some basic equipment and knowledge anyone can produce cured meats at home.  We talk about how to think about what ingredients to include in your cure mix and explain what ratios to use for the salt, as well as the other ingredients, to the meat. I explain some frameworks for how to come up with one’s own recipe, by thinking about other classic spice combinations or by using recipes from other meat dishes to extrapolate a curing recipe. I explain what happens to the meat through the curing process, including the effects of salt, nitrates, and dry aging.

Pig to Pork Chop (10-15 people) all day

– In the morning I lead the group through the process of killing, scalding/skinning (participatory), and eviscerating an animal

– In the afternoon I lead participatory breakdown of a hog, mutton, or goat carcass into portioned cuts and I lead a discussion of the crafty and science butchery. We discuss and I demonstrate different styles of cutting. How the animal’s life effects the quality of the meat, including the way muscle use and movement effects the texture and flavor of the meat. The science and benefits of hanging and aging meat. How to think about curing and cooking different cuts, and more.

Pig to Prosciutto (10-15 people) 2 days

– Day 1: Whole Animal Slaughter, half day

– We lead the group through the process of slaughtering, scalding/skinning (participatory), and eviscerating an animal.

– Day 2: Charcuterie, all day

– In the morning we have a participatory breakdown of a hog into portioned cuts for curing and have a discussion of the craft and science of butchery. We discuss and I demonstrate different styles of cutting. How the animal’s life effects the quality of the meat including the way muscle use and movement effects the texture and flavor of the meat. The science and benefits of hanging and aging meat.

– In the afternoon we have participatory session of putting the various cuts from the morning session under cure (including sausage making, dry curing, brining, and smoking) and a discussion of the history, craft, and science of curing meat. I describe the origins of curing meat, situating the process in its historical roots as a way of preserving meat, emphasizing the humble nature of curing meats and the idea that with some basic equipment and knowledge anyone can produce cured meats at home.  We talk about how to think about what ingredients to include in your cure mix and explain what ratios to use for the salt, as well as the other ingredients, to the meat. I explain some frameworks for how to come up with one’s own recipe, by thinking about other classic spice combinations or by using recipes from other meat dishes to extrapolate a curing recipe. I explain what happens to the meat through the curing process, including the effects of salt, nitrates, and dry aging.

Sausage Making (up to 15 people) 1.5 hrs

-This demo takes the participants through the process of making a sausage at home. It begins with a brief history of sausage making  including an explanation of the style of sausage I would be making that day. We discuss what cuts of meat are best suited for sausage production, and why. Then I explain and demonstrate the best conditions for grinding the meat and discuss how to achieve various textures in your sausage. We talk about how to think about what ingredients to include in a sausage and explain what ratios to use for the salt, as well as the other ingredients, to the meat. I explain some frameworks for how to come up with one’s own recipe, by thinking about other classic spice combinations or by using recipes from other meat dishes to extrapolate a sausage recipe. Then I take the group though the process of mixing the meat and spices, with everyone participating. Next, we stuff the farce in the casings, everyone taking a hand at stuffing. I talk about the various options one has for different kinds of casings (different sizes, synthetic vs natural, etc). Then we finish with a demonstration of some different techniques for linking the sausage and participants each trying some linking.

Smoking Meat (up to 15 people) 1.5 hrs

-This workshop takes the participants through the fundamentals of smoking meat or fish. I begin by giving a basic introduction to smoking meats, situating the process in its historical roots as a way of preserving meat, emphasizing the humble nature of smoking meats and the idea that with some basic equipment and knowledge anyone can produce smoked food at home. We discuss how smoking meat involves the interplay of three basic elements- the meat itself, the temperature, and the wood. In terms of the meat we discuss what cuts are best suited for smoking and why. We talk about the importance of various kinds of salt, as well as sugars and other spices for flavoring the meat, as well as helping to preserve it. We talk about the differences between hot smoking and cold smoking. I describe some the most common fuels or sources of smoke like oak and fruit-wood, as well as some of the less familiar like hay, tea, and even dung. The workshop concludes with a live demonstration of preparing meat/fish for smoking and a actually smoking the meat with a tasting of the finished product.

For more information on Workshops, please contact us at therovingbutcher@gmail.com.