Now when you buy a whole or half a lamb, the odds are good that you will get tradional cuts done by the butcher unless you ask for something different, and they just love to give you a whole leg of lamb, it will look something like this..
Now sometimes its great to cook a whole leg of lamb for a nice big fancy feast but lets face it, that is alot of really good meat and some excellent bone’s for broth sitting there, sometimes its much better to bone it out and self-butcher it into parts for many meals in the future..
So you need to follow the bone, remember you are not de-meating, you are deboning, so the tough silver skin and fats are in the upper left pile next to that still meaty wonderful for broth soup bone to be, you will have a pile of bits and three main peices of meat, now you can use those as little roasts or you can make steaks, stirfry meat stipes etc. Below is my most common breakdown. Sometimes I take one of the little roasts and cut them to make lamb jerky. You can also take your stew meat and quickly and easily make it ground lamb, which can then be used to make many different kinds of sausages.
On the fair right corner is stew meat, enough to make two stew pot full, on the bottom row, the far left is 1 inch thick Lamb steaks, the middle is two little round eyes, They could be cooked like little roasts but I will cut them into two, wrap in bacon and make them into amazing dinner steaks, the little two peices are also just as tender but will be rolled in bread crumbs/spices and fried up into lamb nuggets. On the far right bottom is lovely pre-sliced stir-fry or quick fry stripes.
Now if I had cooked it as a leg of lamb, it would have given us a big meal (2 meals), leftover meat for second meal(2 meals) and then I would have cut off the meat and made stew (8 meals), so that leg of lamb would give 12 meals, not bad.. but break it down into parts and now we are being frugal!
- Scrapes and Bone, will make about 6 pints of broth for canning,
- Plus I will cool it and defat it and then render the fat for later use in the kitchen.
- Enough stew meat to make two pots of stews at 8 meals per pot- Total meals 16
- 4 lamb steaks -Total meals 4
- little rounds- Cut into 6 round steaks -Total meals 6
- Lamb nuggets-Total meals 2
- Pre-cut stripes for stirfry- enough for 2 dinners -Total 4 meals
So that would mean instead of 12 meals, we are now up to 32 meals, now to be clear I am counting a meal as one full dinner for a adult, with the stews portion being counted as a full bowl of stew.( our small bowls hold a cup and half, but our stew bowls hold three cups)
So if you were doing this, what would your final products look like?