Thursday, December 18, 2008

Eating the steer - vegetable beef soup

I slaughtered the steer yesterday, skinned it and let it cool overnight. Temperatures here are pretty good for this sort of thing. The steer firmed up overnight, and I separated the halves with a sawsall today. A metal-cutting blade works pretty well to split the carcass.
While I was at it I sawed off the rear legs below the hocks, and the front legs and hocks. The hocks aren't really much improved by hanging -- plus i wanted to eat some of the steer today, so I cut them into 1.5" disks and brought them home to make vegetable beef soup.

one or two front hocks sliced into 1.5" sections
1/2 large onion, diced
7 large carrots cut into 1/8" pieces
3 celery stalks, diced
1 medium leek, diced
1 small can tomato paste
generous handful of green beans cut into 1" sections
loaf of french bread for dipping
In a large pot brown the hocks in a little vegetable oil. After you've got a little color on all of the hocks, add enough water to cover and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer until the meat falls off the bones, 45 minutes to an hour usually.
Strain the soup through a colander to separate the hocks and the liquid. Return the liquid to the pot. Pick the meat off the bones and the marrow, mince to bit sized bits, and return the meat to the soup. Discard bones and gelatin. (your dog will love you)
Add all other ingredients. simmer until carrots are tender. Serve with the french bread. Just the thing for a cold winter day.

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