Monday, July 30, 2012

Burgers and Fries - Homestead Style

A few days ago, my family butchered a steer. Summer isn't normally the time to do butchering but we were out of beef, so we (my parents, brothers, sisters, and their spouses) went ahead and did it.

We are rather new to beef butchering; this was only the fourth we have done. It took much longer to cut up the meat than we expected but it went well. The meat had been hanging for a week in the cooler. Maybe someday it will go as quickly and smoothly as hog butchering.

We saved the ground beef for the next day. It was nice to split up the project.

After grinding the meat twice...

most of the ground meat was bagged (this photo only shows a fraction)...

but some was made into burgers and vacuum packed.

That night, my brother and his wife invited us over to their house for a cook-out.

Fresh burgers with all the fixins - including vine ripened tomatoes - delicious!

Also that week my parents had dug their potatoes and got a terrific crop.

They cut up a bunch of potatoes...

and my brother made them into homemade fries.

Brown paper on the tables,

piles of greasy fries and burgers,

washed down with a homegrown watermelon and sweet tea -

a satisfying reward to an exhausting project!


  1. Hi Gina - how utterly perfect and what natural food - good to see - Love jane

  2. It's great seeing you all work together! :)

    My in-loves own a meat market so they are quite fast (as is my hubby) at cutting up a cow. Oh should see us in deer season ~ the men-folk cutting the venison and some of us women wrapping the meat! :) It's nice to see another family doing something we do often!


  3. That looks like so much fun! I love homemade fries, deep fried and salted just right.. mmm-mmmm! Wonderful pictures. :-)


  4. It doesn't get much better than that. Oh, how nice to eat the fruits of your labors.

  5. It does look like a very big project, but it's wonderful that your family works together to help provide for each other's families.

  6. Gina,
    Nice pictures, really like the one of your parents.
    Thanks for the post.

  7. Yum. Well done!
    {Drooling over the equipment and teamwork as well as the food.}

  8. Perfect way to serve these homemade goodies and clean up is a breeze!

  9. By the time I got to the end of this post I was drooling. Lol. That all looks so yummy and perfectly summer! What wonderful memories!

  10. Oh I just love reading your posts such as this one. I wish our family did more things like this together, unfortunately not many live the lifestyle we do and are happy to have the convience of buying what they need at the store.
    Beautiful pics of a beautiful lifestyle, thank you so much for sharing!!

  11. I'm amazed at all the things your family does the right way! Together and doing it big! Your last posts have been fun to read. You are going to enjoy the fruit of your labors all winter! Very impressed I am!

  12. That looks and sounds wonderful!

  13. I loved this post! My family does beef butchering and thankfully because my father in law is a butcher it seems to go pretty fast. Judging by your pictures looks like we do things kinda similar. I noticed that you wrapped your ground beef the same way we did this past year. We usually brown-paper wrapped it but we tried the white bags with tags like you showed in your pictures. Is that the way you usually do it? Not sure if it was just me but I did find that the occasional one gets a hole poked in it and thus has the potential to be a bit messy while defrosting

    1. Simone-
      This is only the second time we used these bags. The butcher shop that used to butcher our beef for us in years past also used these bags. I always set the bag in a container in the fridge while defrosting just in case it has a hole or the top is loose. It saves a mess on the fridge shelves.

  14. How wonderful! My dad's family always did things like that together when I was growing up, but somehow none of my siblings are near enough or interested for that matter.

  15. Wehave two steers to butcher but have been waiting on cooler weather. Not sure that is EVER going to happen so we might have to go for it!

  16. Gina, this looks so wonderful. As a culture we have lost so much doing things together as a family. In our house when we to work and fun together, we have noticed that we have become closer. Thank you for sharing your experience! August

  17. Gina,
    Good morning! I am so impressed with the family life you enjoy each and everyday! Your family has the family roots that it takes in the world which we all live. I am very proud of you; enjoying each blog that you write!

    Prayers and Blessings,
    Debbie S.

  18. Gina,

    I also noticed the picture of your children at the top of the Blog! The younger son has his sweet arm around his sister!!!! What a beautiful picture!!!!

    Again Blessings,
    Debbie S.

  19. That looks so delicous! It makes it all the better that your family worked together through each step, and your children will greatly appreciate their hard work that paid off.

  20. This post makes me hungry. It's real food!

  21. Wow, thank you for sharing your life, it is so different from mine, and it makes me want to get up and do more work. I went outside and pulled weeds, burned some debris from the east field (carefully due to drought, small fire in old metal horse tank) and sweep the floor. :)
    You are a good influence on me.

  22. Hi Gina, I have recently rec. a sourdough starter. Today is my first time making bread with it. I was wondering if you could tell me which one of your recipes is your favorite. I saw the simple recipe you have posted. I think it was 2 cups flour, 2 cups starter and salt. Would this be a good one to try? I really liked the simplicity of it. Also I was wondering if I plan on making bread every day, do I have to refrigerate my starter or can I just leave it out overnight? My e-mail address is I would so appreciate if you could let me know and any other advice you have would be greatly appreciated. Thanks and God bless.

  23. This looks like a lot of hard work but lots of fun! My friend Vicki and I did a beef several years ago together. It took us a full week to do it. Hard work for just two. The last day, though, both our hubbies were able to help and her in-laws. It sure goes faster with helping hands. Enjoy your day and thanks again for the info on the sourdough. Enjoy your day and God bless.


I'm still learning how to be a joyful homemaker and I'd love to hear from you!


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