Wednesday, July 14, 2010

mindful butchery.

There really isn’t any other way to butcher. A sharp knife, a steady hand, and a clear mind. I adore butchery, unveiling, creating: the first step once meat enters the kitchen. It bums me out when I hear the word ‘butcher’ used like ‘botch;’ there’s a big difference between butchering and just hacking something apart. When I butcher something that takes a while, like a whole Pellibüey, I get into the zone, and because I have bloody-meat hands, I can’t take any calls. It’s wonderful.

Our pellibüe is delivered by Don Leonel, who is also our boat taxista. He now borrows a ice-filled cooler to keep the animal cold after he does his part, because receiving animals so fresh they are still warm is a little too much for me to handle.

I recently spotted Leonel donning silk screened shorts.
The front is Tupac Shakur’s face, and the back a quote from 2Pac’s song, “Reminisce.” It happened to be on a day when I had spent the morning butchering meat, during which my mind wandered. I feel a little nostalgic for times past, and this year, I’ve been thinking about high school. It might be partly influenced that I have my 10 year reunion later this year. But also, when I first had fun slicing away with a sharp knife was my senior year Advanced Anatomy class, spending the entire year dissecting human cadavers. I didn’t know what I wanted to do with my life at all (do I now?), but I loved dissecting for many of the same reasons that I like spending time on butchery. No, the day will never come that I get human meat (IASIP) prepped to grill, but the physical act of dissecting is not too far from butchery, and I have a great time with it.

Well, thanks, Tupac and Leonel for the inspirational shorts.

pictured: dinner main course; Pellibüey in red mole (spicy, nutty, a little sweet) over chilote cornbread

... and because I can’t let a liver go to waste, coming soon: Pellibüey Pâté!