Are you a deer hunter looking to process your own meat?
One thing you may have noticed is that deer meat is very lean, which can make it difficult to create juicy and flavorful burgers or sausages. The solution? Adding beef fat.
But where can you find this essential ingredient? In this article, we’ll explore some options for where to buy beef fat for deer processing.
Whether you’re a seasoned pro or a newbie to the world of hunting and processing your own meat, read on to learn more.
Where To Buy Beef Fat For Deer Processing?
There are a few different options for where to buy beef fat for deer processing.
First, you can try your local grocery store or butcher. Some stores may sell beef suet, which is the hard fat that surrounds the kidneys and other organs of the cow. This can be grated or chopped and added to your ground venison to increase the fat content.
If your local store doesn’t carry suet, you can also try dedicated butcher shops. These shops often have a wider variety of cuts and may be able to provide you with beef fat specifically for processing deer meat.
Another option is to purchase beef fat online. There are several websites that specialize in selling meat and meat products, including beef fat. This can be a convenient option if you don’t have access to a local store or butcher that sells suet or beef fat.
Why Add Beef Fat To Deer Meat?
Adding beef fat to deer meat is a common practice among hunters and cooks alike. While deer meat is lean and healthy, it can also be dry and crumbly when ground alone. By adding beef fat to the mixture, you can improve the texture and flavor of your ground venison.
Beef fat not only adds flavor to your venison, but it also helps to bind the meat together and hold its shape when cooking. The fat content also helps to keep the meat juicy and moist, preventing it from becoming dry and tough. Without enough fat, your venison burgers or sausages may fall apart on the grill or in the pan.
The ratio of beef fat to venison can vary depending on personal preference, but a general rule of thumb is to add around 10-20% fat to your ground venison mixture. This will create a juicy and flavorful burger or sausage without overpowering the natural taste of the venison.
There are different sources of fat that you can use when making your own ground venison. While some people prefer to mix ground beef or pork with their deer meat, others choose to add pork fat or lard instead. Pork fat is easier to grind than beef fat and doesn’t leave a greasy residue in your mouth.
Local Butchers And Meat Markets
If you’re looking for a local butcher or meat market to purchase beef fat for deer processing, there are a few options in the Toronto area. One such option is the Gasparro’s Meat Market, located in Bloorcourt Village. This family-owned shop has been in business for generations and prides itself on sourcing meat from small Ontario farms. They offer a wide selection of meats, including beef fat that can be used for processing deer meat.
Another option is the Monte Family Butcher Shop, located in Etobicoke. This shop has been in operation since 2016 but the Monte family has been butchering for much longer, with a legacy that starts in Calabria, Italy. They offer a variety of meats, including veal and free-range chicken that is GMO- and antibiotic-free. In addition, they have a robust produce section that can provide additional ingredients for your deer processing needs.
If you prefer to shop from home, there are also online options available. One such option is a company that offers custom boxes of individually vacuum-sealed, portion-controlled meats that are flash frozen to maintain freshness. They source their products from local Ontario farms and offer monthly meat deliveries containing the best products available. This can be a convenient option if you want to support local farms while also getting the beef fat you need for deer processing.
If you’re looking to buy beef fat for deer processing online, there are a few reputable retailers to consider. One option is US Wellness Meats, which offers grass-fed beef suet in various sizes. Their suet is minimally processed and can be used for cooking or rendered down into tallow.
Another online retailer to consider is Fatworks, which offers a variety of animal fats including grass-fed beef tallow. Their tallow is made from the kidney fat of the cow and is ideal for high-heat cooking.
For those who prefer organic options, Organic Prairie offers grass-fed beef tallow made from the kidney fat of organic cows. Their tallow can be used for cooking or skincare purposes.
Lastly, if you’re looking for a more budget-friendly option, Amazon offers various brands of beef suet and tallow for purchase. However, it’s important to read reviews and check the source of the product before making a purchase.
Local Farms And Ranches
If you prefer to buy your beef fat from a local source, there are several farms and ranches that offer high-quality beef products. One way to find them is by asking around at your local farmer’s market or within your circle of friends. More and more people are turning to local sources for their food, so you may be able to find several suppliers right away.
Another option is to search the internet for local farms and ranches. For example, in Colorado, there is an online “Local Beef Directory” that lists local farms and ranches that offer beef products. Websites like Local Harvest and Craigslist can also be helpful in finding local sources of beef fat.
When considering a farm or ranch, it’s important to ask questions about their farming practices. Some raise their animals on pasture only, while others may “finish” their animals with grain. Grass-fed and finished beef has a different taste than grain-fed and finished, so it’s important to choose a source that aligns with your preferences.
Depending on the proximity and willingness of the supplier, you may even be able to visit the farm in person to see their practices firsthand. Some places even allow you to choose your own animal, which can give you even more control over the quality of the meat.
Butchering Your Own Beef For Fat
If you’re interested in processing your own beef for fat, there are a few things you should know. First and foremost, it’s important to have the proper equipment and knowledge to safely and effectively butcher your own animal. This includes a sharp knife, a saw, and the ability to properly store and refrigerate the meat.
Once you have your beef animal selected for slaughter, make sure it is healthy and in good condition. Prior to slaughter, it’s recommended to keep the animal off feed for 24 hours but provide free access to water. Avoid running or exciting the animal before slaughter, as this can lead to poor bleeding and a bloody appearance in the carcass.
After the animal has been slaughtered, it’s important to properly chill the meat. Night temperatures should be 32 degrees Fahrenheit or lower for the carcass to chill properly without refrigeration. Improper chilling and storage during warm weather can cause spoilage, while extremely cold weather may require protection from freezing by covering the meat with a clear cover.
When it comes to processing the beef for fat, you can harvest offal such as liver, sweetbreads, loads of fat, kidney, and heart. The brisket cut is also high in fat content and can be used for corned beef or BBQ brisket. If you’re making ground beef, it’s recommended to start with cold meat to prevent separation and add chunks of meat into the grinder without forcing them. Adding pork fat into your grind can also help increase the fat content.
If you’re raising your own beef animal for processing, make sure to wait until it has fully filled out its brisket and has fat rolls at its tail head before butchering. Steers on full feed will be ready at 14-18 months of age, while steers on grass only will take 26-28 months.
Tips For Storing And Using Beef Fat In Deer Processing.
Once you have obtained beef fat for deer processing, it’s important to store and use it properly to ensure the best results. Here are some tips:
1. Store the beef fat in the refrigerator or freezer until you are ready to use it. Beef suet can be stored in the refrigerator for up to 5 days or frozen for up to 6 months. Rendered tallow can be stored at room temperature in a sealed container for up to a year, or in the refrigerator or freezer for even longer.
2. Trim any excess tissue from the beef fat before using it. This will help prevent any unwanted flavors and ensure that you are using pure fat.
3. When processing your deer meat, collect small pieces of fat in a bowl. You can use the fat from any area of the animal, but the best fat for cooking is the layer under the skin on the quarters and back.
4. Run the cold fat through a meat grinder or trim it into small pieces by hand. Place the ground fat into a large stockpot with 1 cup of water and heat it over low heat, stirring occasionally. The fat is rendered when the liquid is clear and impurities have risen to the top.
5. Strain the rendered fat through a cheesecloth fit on a colander to remove any impurities or bits of tissue.
6. Use the rendered beef fat in your deer processing recipes as desired. It can be added to ground venison to increase the fat content, used for sautéing or frying, or even made into skincare products like whipped tallow balm.
By following these tips, you can ensure that your beef fat is stored and used properly for optimal results in your deer processing recipes.