I guess I’m ok with this now…

Here’s what was going on in my kitchen Wednesday night:

Now that is manhandling meat if I've ever seen it.

Please note the perma-grins

I can't believe I'm actually posting a picture of raw meat.

Ok that’s all I can handle.

LFF (little fun fact):  I’m not much of a meat-manhandling person.  Or raw-meat-handling person.  I don’t love going to the meat counter and staring at all the meat like some people I know.  I have never craved a steak.  I’ll thaw meat, cook it, and eat most of it….but I leave the meatloaf-making, the burger-forming and any other meaty chore to The Hubs.

Anyways….back to the “Wild Meat Wednesday” festivities as I’ll call it.  (Please read the following sentences with a redneck accent, like I would if I could read it to you).  “What you see goin on in those there pictures is The Hubs and his hunting buddies making some sausage.  Yep.   Elk Sausage.” 

Two weeks ago, I might not have been ok with this all going down in my kitchen.   I’ve never been in support of animal processing at our house for multiple reasons.  But mostly because one time I came home and The Hubs and his buddy were cutting up a deer (that I can only describe as Bambi) on our wooden kitchen cutting board.   Please don’t get me wrong, The Hubs and his friends are some of the most ethical hunters I know and I’m actually pro-hunting because of them and have a lot of respect for how they hunt.  But somehow this deer “looked bigger from far away” – or so the friend says.  (Luckily it was not The Hubs that shot it….he has been given a strict rule not to shoot any babies or any mother that is with her babies). 

Ever since then I’ve put the k-bosh on any animal processing in our kitchen.  That cutting board has never been the same!   Besides, the in-laws have an entire work space dedicated to this process.  So it only makes sense that they utilize it.  Right?  Right.

So….why am I ok with the sausage making?  Why did I document it??

To words, one movie:  Food Inc.

Have you guys seen this documentary?  H-o-l-y-c-o-w  (now there’s a pun for you).  It. Is. Eye opening.  It. Is. Disturbing.  It. Is. Thought-provoking.  It. Is…Wow.

It’s based on this simple principle:  know where your food comes from.  Do you know?  Why do we have tomatoes year round when they’re only in season for part of it?  Why are chicken breasts 2 times the size of what they were 10 years ago and grown twice as fast?  Do you know where your beef comes from, or who the farmer was?  Do you even know if that cow was raised/slaughtered humanely?  Do you care?  Do you realize that organizations like McDonalds are majorly controlling how all of our beef, tomatoes, apples and lettuce are grown/distributed?  Do you know that farmers are being forced to comply with certain (sometimes unethical) requests with the fear of their contract being pulled?  Do you care?  Don’t even get me started on chickens.

Honestly, these are things that I never really spent much time thinking about, or perhaps chose not to.  All I cared about was that the store had the goods I wanted when I needed it.   I was so ignorant.  Ignorance is bliss, right?  I mean, of course I thought about it….but did I really think about it and make decisions that were healthy for myself, my family, the animals and the earth?  Not really. 

Watch it for yourself.  Make your own opinions.  And of course take everything with a grain of salt. 

But I’m choosing to make some changes because of it.  I’m going to try to buy local when I can, buy more organic, read labels (better) and be an active player in my health.  Heck, I’ve got a freezer full of organic elk, deer and antelope meat…I should consider myself lucky (as long as I don’t have to handle it).  This way of thinking isn’t just for hippies anymore people.  It’s just smart.

The bottom line is that no one else is going to look out for me, other than me.   Not the “farmers” (if you can even call some of them that), not the meat packers, not the big conglomerate organizations and certainly not the big wigs benefiting from all of this corruption.  So bring it on; knowledge is power. 

And that sausage?  Yeah.  I know where it came from:  The Sapphire Mountains.  And my kitchen.

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