If you're lucky enough as a restaurant to get a whole hog, you're well on your way to creating an entire array of charcuterie, from terrines to rilletes, from coppa to soppressata -- and that's after using most of the other meat for chops or tenderloin.
But it requires a certain amount of skill to break down an entire hog, especially the 315-pound beast that Chef Chris Shepherd at Catalan received from Atkinson's Farm yesterday. Not many chefs in Houston know how to butcher an entire pig from start to finish, but don't despair: Shepherd plans on teaching classes soon, for kitchen pros and amateurs alike.
In this week's feature, "Designer Meats," we discuss how Shepherd routinely breaks down whole hogs to create his restaurant's cured meats and sausages. For those not faint of heart, you can watch the entire process for yourselves below.
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If you enjoyed the video and want to check out more pictures from the butchering process, visit our slideshow.