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DIY deer processing: hams

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Here is a simple step-by-step method of boning a deer.

Hams

To aid in removal of meat, it might be necessary to lower the carcass a bit with the winch. The sirloin tips come off first, and they are easily removed with a fillet knife. Stand on the belly side of the carcass, and locate what would be a “knee” of the deer. Just below the “knee” on the ham, hold the fillet knife horizontal to the leg, and make a deep cut. With the knife blade you’ll feel bone, which is the femur. The knife blade is positioned tight to this bone and across it, while cutting away a large meaty muscle portion that is essentially the sirloin tip. It makes a great single roast, or later can be cut into steaks, or chunks for stews and roasts.

Boning the rest of the hams is next, and it can be done so that they come off in very large sections for big roasts, steaks, or in smaller chunks used for stews, frying, grilling, grinding, etc. Work your fillet knife close to the big ham bone and pelvic area. Small chunks of the good-eating ham should be trimmed away and saved, too, as they are outstanding for marinating and grilling, grinding as hamburger or sliced for jerky.

Neck meat, flank meat and any other small “pieces” still remaining on the carcass easily can be trimmed off now, since they are excellent for use as ground venison, sausage and jerky.

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