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Butchering & Tasting Demonstration: Sheep & Mutton

  • Boulder Lamb Farm 10075 North 75th Street Longmont, CO, 80503 United States (map)

Today, Americans are eating animals younger than ever. Beef is produced at a quickening pace with slaughter ages getting earlier and earlier. Pigs are slaughtered before a year old, as are lambs. Kid goat is about the only thing you will see on a menu. What happens to all the older animals? Adam Danforth will discuss the virtues of older animals, how working muscles render more flavor, the inverse relationship of taste and texture, and why we should be supporting farmers more by consuming their older and cull animals. The workshop will include a rundown of meat science and how we experience it as deliciousness, all the while breaking down an older animal into primals and cuts. Adam will answer questions along the way and relate the animal's anatomy to that of other farmyard species. 

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There is an untapped market for mutton, culls, and older animals yet to be discovered in the professional kitchen. Danforth takes an in-depth look into the biological processes that affect the flavor and qualities of the meat we eat. Adam illustrates the market potential of eating older animals, dispelling the negative stereotypes of 'tough' and 'gamey' meat in place of more complex flavor profiles. Onsite cooking demos will demonstrate techniques to maximize flavor of these complex meats and discusses the role chefs can play in driving market demand for these new products. 

About the organizers:

Adam Danforth is the James Beard and IACP award-winning author of two books, published by Storey Publishing, about slaughtering and butchering livestock. He teaches workshops and lectures nationwide for venues such as Stone Barns Center for Agriculture. Adam lives in Ashland, OR. 

Boulder Lamb is run by Clint and MaryKay Buckner. Sheep farming runs deep in their family tradition, with six generations of ranchers running flocks from Vermont to Idaho for over 130 years. Boulder Lamb breeds Columbia/Rambouillet ewes with a Suffolk or Hampshire buck, the product of which is a mild and tender lamb. Their entire flock free ranges on grass and alfalfa from fields in North Boulder County and Monte Vista, and the flock is never given steroids, feed antibiotics, or growth hormones for weight gain.