This is the video transcript. To watch the video for this episode click here.
GRANT: I was blessed to tag a big doe this morning, and I’ve already skinned it out. But we’ve had some questions recently on how I remove the internal organs. So I want to take some time and share my technique with you.
GRANT: If you’re curious about how we skin a deer, watch the episode we previously released.
GRANT: The first step is taking the hide off, which I like to skin a deer hanging up. But before I even hang it up, I flip the deer over on its back. And I skin down the sternum and actually cut the muscle back from each side. And that makes it much easier to open up that thoracic cavity.
GRANT: The next step is removing the front shoulders. It’s much easier to remove the shoulders now before I open this up and get some of the body fluids on that meat.
GRANT: The front shoulder is easy to remove from a deer because it’s connected to the body by muscle and other tissues, there’s not a bone connection. So you do not have to cut through a bone to remove the front shoulder.
GRANT: So, when you’re getting ready to cut the shoulder, don’t just go in there hacking. You’ll see a natural separation between the muscles on the shoulder and the muscles on the torso of the body.
GRANT: So, I’m just following that little line. You can see how I’m really just not cutting through a lot of muscle. You’ve got to cut this little muscle here. And I’m following that line of connective tissue ‘til the top of the shoulder. And come down right here. You can see the top of the shoulder blade right there. And that removes it very clean.
GRANT: You’ve probably noticed there’s a tub under the carcass. And that’s so blood will drip in there and not get on the concrete or anything I trim off that we’re not going to eat can go in the tub. And then we can dispose of that appropriately later.
GRANT: The next step after I’ve removed the front shoulders is opening up the thoracic cavity. I’m starting here and working my way up.
GRANT: You know, when I started harvesting some deer – of course, I was out in the woods, rolling around on the ground; got the meat all dirty. And I’d take my sharp knife and go down through there. And it wasn’t sharp anymore. It wasn’t as sharp anyway. And then I couldn’t make as clean a cuts on the meat.
GRANT: I’ve learned a better process, especially once I learned how clean it was to bring the deer out of the field and process it back at the shop.
GRANT: To open up the thoracic cavity, I like to use loppers versus my knife. It may seem a bit more efficient to have two blades cutting versus a bypass. These are called bypass loppers where the sharp blade forces whatever you’re cutting against this bypass object.
GRANT: But I’m telling you, you don’t want something sharp sticking in right here because that’s the rumen. It’s got pressure pushing down, especially hanging like this. And you don’t want to end up with rumen fluid on the meat you’re going to consume.
GRANT: So, I take the bypass end. Stick it in here. I try to stay in the center of the sternum. I want to cut bone. If I get over in the ribs, it’s bone, meat, bone, meat. And meat tends to bind up bypass loppers.
GRANT: Take several snips. It’s not like, you know, sharp scissors just going right through material. You’re cutting through the bone. So, I’ll snip down and kind of check on my process. I want to make sure I cut the last rib, what some people call the collarbone. Because if you don’t, when the organs come down, they’ll hang up there and you won’t be able to get them out cleanly.
GRANT: You need to cut this so you can open up the entire thoracic cavity.
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GRANT: I finished cutting the sternum all the way down to the last set of ribs. It’s opened up. The next step is to open up the abdomen so I can expose all the organs.
GRANT: You want to be careful doing that. The rumen is in here. It’s got a fair amount of pressure on it. You’ll notice it was clean because these are still connected and held up in here.
GRANT: So, I take my two fingers and just simply stick in and kind of push the rumen back and then just the tip of my knife in cutting through that muscle tissue. There’s no bones in here, so I just need the tip to kind of cut right through that thin layer of muscle.
GRANT: I’ve opened up the abdominal cavity. But you notice everything is just staying in place. And that’s because I’ve not cut through the diaphragm.
GRANT: You want to kind of wait until you get everything ready. And then when you do it right, you’ll just be able to peel this all out into the tub and it keeps all the meat very clean.
GRANT: And you can see all the fat. This doe was very healthy. All the organs are covered with fat in here. And that’s a great sign that this meat is going to be very palatable. This was a very healthy doe.
GRANT: At this point, I just free up a few of the little side muscles here. Some people call them sheet muscles. I’m not cutting in any organs.
GRANT: This is the bladder. I don’t want to puncture the bladder but when I was skinning the deer, I freed up most of the tissue on top of the bladder. I’m going to just reach from this side and free up a little bit more – just connective tissue here.
GRANT: And so nothing’s leaking. No fluids are getting on the meat.
GRANT: Now the tenderloin is right back here. That’s the top (Inaudible). So be careful where you’re cutting. You’re just freeing up fat.
GRANT: And then once I get ready, I’m just opening this up a little bit. And I’m going to free this up.
GRANT: And notice I’m not, I’m not even above my gloves. I’m not dirty at all. This doesn’t have to be a yucky process. Just freeing that up.
GRANT: This is a kidney. And see the kidney is almost encased with fat. And it’s mid-October. That’s a great sign. These deer should be totally encased – the kidney should be totally encased – with fat by Thanksgiving or so. They’re going to go through the winter just fine.
GRANT: I’m just – these are the, the, the tenderloins again. So, I’m just going right above them – right above them.
GRANT: And then, looky – oh my goodness. I’m getting almost to the diaphragm right here. And you can see I’m going into the thoracic cavity. And my arrow at that angle cut through just a little bit of the esophagus.
GRANT: You can see the back of the lungs and liver are bloody because that’s where my arrow hit it. And this is the diaphragm. So, I’m just trimming that down off both sides.
GRANT: And the organs are just falling into my tub. I’m not in here pulling around; doing a bunch of things. I’m continuing to take that diaphragm down so my – the organs of the deer will just come out. And I’m freeing up the tissue on the backside.
GRANT: And because I cut that last rib with the loppers, everything just falls down – all the way down.
GRANT: There’s the heart right there. Some people eat the heart. I don’t because it’s very, very high in cholesterol. Organ meat is very high in cholesterol.
GRANT: And that’s about as clean a carcass. And then when I’m all the way down, well, I’m cutting that esophagus off right there. A little fat holding it up.
GRANT: And I’ve got a clean carcass. And again, my arrow come in this side and cut through the esophagus and went out here. You can tell she’d been eating on acorns. But very clean carcass. Very clean way to remove all the organs from your deer and prepare it for removing all the meat, processing the meat for your family.
GRANT: I’ll just take the water hose – that’s one great thing about processing a deer back at your house or your garage or your shop. Spray this down a little bit, take the meat off and call this a great day.
GRANT: This is a simple and clean technique to remove the organs from a deer as part of the processing.
GRANT: If you’d like to see our technique for deboning the meat, check out GrowingDeer episode 248.
GRANT: I hope you have a chance to get outside, get some fresh venison and enjoy Creation. But most importantly, I hope you take time daily to be quiet, and listen to what the Creator is saying to you.
GRANT: Thanks for watching GrowingDeer.