The Gourmet Butcher's Guide to Meat: How to Source it Ethically, Cut it Professionally, and Prepare it Properly (with CD)
Portions of this are a direct copy/slightly amended from my personal review listed with a large, internet retailer. With whom I did NOT purchase the book. I kept it local but I wanted this to reach a large audience. As a meat cutter; Mr. Ward's book is without hesitation the single greatest resource I have read as it relates to butchery and the meat industry itself. His no-nonsense, digestible and easily retainable manner of writing is excellent. You need this if you are:
- Interested in the history and practices of the meat industry (both positive and negative)
- Looking for new insight/truth in the whole 'grass-fed' argument
- A meat cutter who wants to read anything they can get their hands on related to the subject
- A home chef or hobbyist butcher looking to expand their repertoire and knowledge of meat
From the history of butchering animals; as in, pre-record-keeping/ancient times. Where did butchery come from, why do we eat meat? To the incredibly well done CD that comes with the book; A step-by-step, shot-by-shot guide on how to breakdown a half beef, half pork, whole lamb and whole chicken.. The resources list, the recipes, the knowledge and perspective, it's all excellent. Keep in mind the text has no 'this is how you cut it up' section. That's on the CD. Read the book, then look at the CD -- it's a total package.
It is published by Chelsea Green, which is clearly "permie heavy" in it's body of work. Support the small guys, physical books with paper pages are very important.