Discover the Best Butchery Classes in Los Angeles
Butchery is a detail-oriented craft that has been refined over thousands of years into what it is today. One of the oldest trades that people still practice, butchery is the art of selecting, slaughtering, deboning, cutting, and preparing meat. Butchery emphasizes getting the best cuts from the finest meats and stands in opposition to the mass-produced industrial meat products of modern society.
Dating back over 400,000 years with the earliest documented butchery site in Kent, England, processing or fabricating meat while minimizing waste has evolved with the human race. Factory farming and the industrialization of agriculture forced the trade out of fashion, but independent butcher shops have recently seen a rise in popularity as individuals become more intentional about what they consume and how they source it,
Becoming an expert butcher can improve the experience of your hand-crafted meals and help support sustainable farming. A butchery course can be a great way to perfect your skills so that you can create truly memorable farm-to-table food experiences, for both loved ones and customers. Whether you’re exploring butchery as a new hobby or profession, there’s so much to be gained from practicing this ancient set of skills.
Why You Should Learn Butchery in Los Angeles
Living in a large metropolis like Los Angeles means that fast, overly-processed convenient foods are available at your fingertips. Butchery, in contrast, is a well-respected trade focused on hand-selected meat often sourced from local ranches. This slower, more intentional food source allows you to elevate your dishes with an artisanal flair.
Learning how to properly butcher is ideal for those with a focus on environmentalism as you can locally source your meat from sustainable and humane farms. You can also minimize your waste by ensuring every usable part of the animal is properly harvested. In this bustling, busy world it can be difficult to develop a deeper connection to your food and the environment. Butchery is the practice of doing just that, ensuring your dishes are healthy, wholesome, and earth-friendly.
Becoming an expert butcher can also be cost-effective. Buying large portions of meat directly from a local farm and butchering them into prime cuts yourself lets you stock up on meat for one or more seasons. Cutting out the middleman and handling the processing and packaging on your own can help limit your financial waste, as well.
A particularly niche industry, butchery can also open up new avenues for expanding your community and making friends. Local butcher shops are often central to their communities with expert butchers forming bonds based on trust and respect with their neighbors and local businesses.
This, of course, also makes it a great potential career path, especially with the cultural shift away from factory farming towards less harmful, more sustainable ways to source food. A quality butcher shop can be an essential business in any community, connecting ranchers to customers, and making farm-to-table practices more accessible.
In-Person Butchery Classes in Los Angeles
Los Angeles is known as a foodie city with everything from five-star restaurants to some of the best food trucks and street vendors you’ll find. This vibrant and eclectic local food scene relies on high-quality meats from expert butchers to create delicious and eclectic dishes. With so many outstanding butcheries located within the city, there is no shortage of in-person butcher courses.
If you’re located in Los Angeles, Chef Eric’s Culinary Classroom offers a 12-week Master Chef Program. While this French cooking-based course covers more than just your basic butchery skills, the very first class is solely focused on an introduction to kitchen and knife skills that will be fundamental to developing your butchery techniques. You can then expand upon those skills in the remaining classes, learning how to make sauces and mastering the art of cooking vegetables, potatoes, pasta, and even breakfast foods.
Located in the Highland Park neighborhood of Los Angeles is Hog Butchery Demo, put on by the Institute of Domestic Technology. Celebrity butcher Jered Standing will lead students through the butchering of an entire side of a Heritage-breed pig sourced from a California ranch. The class will include delicious snacks, wine, and a take-home bag of 4-5 lbs of pork with cooking instructions.
The Institute of Domestic Technology also hosts several other courses like Home Butchery: Whole Chicken where students will learn to break down an entire chicken, practice de-boning, and master spatchcocking a bird so it can be roasted in under 30 minutes. This course includes hands-on instruction, two, whole Belcampo Meat Co. chickens per student, and the Institute's signature instruction handout with detailed notes and recipes
Another of their courses, Swig & Swine: Hog Butchery, provides students with wine and snacks while being led through a hog butchery demo. You’ll also gain knowledge on how to purchase lesser-known cuts that are cheaper and more interesting to prepare. Led by Jered Standing, this class will teach you how to cook different parts of a hog and ends with a pork tasting.
Looking to learn more about the specifics of how to cook your own cuts? BLVD. Kitchen leads a course called New Basics: Mastering Meat. Located in Sherman Oaks, this class teaches the basic techniques for cooking dishes that are full of flavor and easy to master, even for beginners. Recipes include pan-seared steak, beef bourguignon, dry-rubbed tri-tip, roasted potatoes, and chimichurri sauce.
Virtual Butchery Classes
Are you looking to avoid time lost sitting in Los Angeles’ notorious traffic? Online butchery classes can be attended from wherever you want and, with on-demand classes, whenever you want. Learning from the comfort of your own home in your favorite pajamas can make the experience even more enjoyable. While you generally are required to source your own supplies and tools, online butchery classes still have the benefit of an expert instructor and the hands-on experience that in-person classes offer.
Provided by The Chopping Block Lincoln Square, Virtual Building Blocks: Chicken Butchery and Cookery is an informative online class held via Zoom. This two-hour class will educate students on how to select quality poultry and properly butcher and prepare a chicken. It will also cover several different cooking techniques like braising, roasting, and sauteing. Students will be provided with a recipe packet, equipment list, and class syllabus upon registering.
Similarly, The Chopping Block Lincoln Square also hosts Virtual Building Blocks: Fish Butchery and Cookery. This class will cover selecting fish, how to identify flat and round fish, techniques for breaking down a whole fish, and various cooking methods. Also hosted via Zoom, a moderator will make sure that all your questions are answered by the chef either during or after class.
An essential skill for any poultry-lover, Home Cooking New York leads a class on how to cook chicken. This virtual class will help you learn to buy the highest quality chicken from the supermarket and break down a whole chicken. You’ll make homemade chicken broth, practice pan-roasting for crispy skin, and make a flavorful pan sauce. Created for all levels, this class is great for beginners looking to dip their toes into the basics of butchery and cooking.
Private Group Butchery Classes in Los Angeles
Does your team deserve a one-of-a-kind experience? CourseHorse also coordinates private group butchery classes that can be customized to fit the needs of your business or organization.