October 1, 2021: Processing Andrew's Moose (38 Photos)


As you've read already in my article "Southern Shore Moose Hunting-Andrew's Hunt", crewmember Andrew French successfully harvested a beautiful young bull opening week of the 2021 moose hunting season.



Having cleaned & dressed the quarters and letting the meat rest in Mark's commercial cooler for about 12 days we were now ready to process the harvest. We headed back to the French moose processing facility in Portugal Cove to get the meat cut, trimmed and bagged. This starts by hanging a quarter and removing sections of muscle as one group and dividing it into roasts, cubed meat for bottling and well trimmed smaller pieces for grinding.



This process is known as deboning the meat as we do not use a saw to cut up the quarters. During the process we trim out & toss tough connecting membrane and grizzle from all our meat which makes for a much better finished product whether its a roast, bottled product or ground meat.



Teamwork makes the dream work, once we all get so much meat deboned we split up with a couple hands deboning, some trimming and more running the grinder & bagging. We weigh our ground meat which helps keep bag sizes consistent and easy to prepare meals with. 2lbs in Medium size and 5lbs in Large freezer bags. All of the air is squeezed out of each bag which prevents freezer burn.



I arrived a little late but brought a sampling of my latest sausage creation, Wild Game - Jalapeño - Cheddar Cheese moose sausages. These are made from Outdoor Pro's Wild Game seasoning combined with fresh cut Jalapeño Peppers and Old Style Cheddar Cheese (which is a little drier and harder than regular cheddar).



The sausages were a hit and were immediately added to everyone's wish list for sausage making day!



These Princess Auto grey meat totes are stocked by all of the crew and are invaluable for all stages of moose processing and are quite handy around the house.





We pushed through 'till almost midnight but got all four quarters finished and bagged, then all of the bags of meat were evenly divided amongst the hunting crew.



The following evening, Matt, Andrew and Stroh got together at Matt's place to make sausages for Stroh.










I've gotta give Matt credit, he has become quite an 'ol hand at linking sausages. He studied it for a bit and has perfected his skill over the last couple years and it's impressive to watch!













After a snack the boys cut the links apart and vacuum sealed in meal size portions.



A few nights later a bunch of us got together back at the state of the art French moose processing facility in Portugal Cove to make a load of sausages for Andrew, Mark & Harry. It was a large task but we would push through late to completion. The first flavour we ran was a new mix from Outdoor Pros, Sweet Honey BBQ which as the name implies has a sweet smoky flavour.



We used a ratio of 60/40 moose to Costco lean ground pork in all our sausages. With BBQ complete we moved on to the fancy Wild Game - Jalapeño - Cheddar sausages. These take a little longer as you have to cube up the fresh peppers and cheese into approximate 3/16" cubes.





We decided to trim out the seeds which will remove some of the heat from the Jalapeños. These peppers were grown by Andrew himself in his greenhouse!













Teamwork strikes again as a couple of us ran the stuffer while Andrew mixed the next batch and Matthew created links.





I should add, prior to stuffing we always fry up a sampler to make sure the ratio of seasoning to meat is spot on. At this point it's possible to add more meat or add more seasoning if the mixture is off one way or the other.



Sausages were counted out to meal size portions and vacuum sealed to prevent freezer burn while stored in the deep freeze.





I finally remembered to bring my apron to the meat shop, this was graciously made for me by Iris Partridge, I added a little Shed-Headz flair to make it complete.







At the end of the night, over 80lbs of sausages were mixed, stuffed and bagged to be enjoyed by the entire hunting party.


Cheers, MIKE

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