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TI CHEVON -- MEAT CUTS
AU G. F. W. Haenlein; U. of Delaware, Newark
RV D. L. Ace; Pennsylvania State U., University Park
DE Management and Housing
1 Chevon is valued highly by certain people, for example, of
Mediterranean, Caribbean, Near Eastern, Indian, Far Eastern, Central
American origin. Among Spanish speaking people it is called
2 The US National Livestock and Meat Board has issued uniform
standards and identifications of retail cuts for beef, pork, veal and
lamb but none for chevon; probably because this market is relatively
small or not well organized.
3 The goat carcass is different from the lamb carcass, being much
leaner and having only little subcutaneous and muscular fat. Otherwise,
the bone structure and muscle position may be quite similar.
Therefore, in the absence of official charts on the anatomy and retail
cuts of goats - chevon - , it is suggested that the respective lamb
charts, as attached may serve a useful purpose.
4 A goat weighing 100 lbs may have a carcass weighing approximately
50 lbs, or 500f liveweight. Goat carcasses unlike pork or beef but
like lamb are not split nor ''ribbed,'' i.e. the whole carcass is
handled readily, being lighter than pork or beef and are cooled as a
whole. For carcass evaluation, however, the fore- and hindsaddles are
separated between the 12th and 13th rib to show rib eye and loin eye
areas, and subcutaneous fat thickness. The foresaddle, shoulder, rack,
foreshank and breast make up approximately 510f the carcass or 25.5
of liveweight. The hindsaddle, loin, leg and flank comprise the
difference of 490r 24.5respectively.
5 Principal Cuts
Primal cuts are the leg, loin, rack and shoulder. The largest cut
is the leg, about 330f the carcass or 16.51f the live goat. On a
retail basis it would be trimmed down to 240f carcass weight. The
sirloin is normally included with the leg after separation of the loin
at the seventh or last lumber vertebra. In beef and pork the sirloin
and rump are separate cuts.
6 Leg - The leg may be prepared as Frenched, American or boneless.
For the Frenched leg, only the tail bones, hock bones, Achilles tendon,
fat trim and prefemoral lymph node are removed and the shank bone is
exposed. For the American leg, the shank bone and the shank muscle are
also removed. The whole leg may also be cut into 4 to 6 sirloin chops,
the rump, center roast and shank. The latter two can be sliced into
steaks. The best use of the leg is as boneless cut, after removing the
whole pelvic bone and femur. For roasting, the boneless leg needs to be
tied together or jet-netted.
7 Loin - The loin is the most valuable and most tender cut. Only 4
of the live weight are retail loin cuts. Kidney fat is usually left on
the wholesale carcass to protect the valuable tenderloin muscle
underneath from discoloration and dehydration. The loin may be prepared
as double loin chops, or after sawing through the lumbar vertebrae as
single chops containing the characteristic T from the vertebral process
as in T-bone steak of beef. The rack may be prepared likewise into rib
chops, containing at least one rib, but may be cut considerably thicker
than pork chops or beef steaks because of their small size.
8 Shoulder - The largest cut in the foresaddle is the shoulder,
second in size only to the leg. Shoulder cuts are priced less than leg
and loin because of less tenderness and palatability. However, Saratoga
roll boneless shoulder blade chops composed largely of rib eye muscle
make very tender and juicy chevon. The rest of the shoulder goes for
stew or shish kabobs. The shoulder can also be made into a jet-netted
boneless shoulder roast. Rough cuts, the flank, fore shank and breast
are best ground up, but can be utilized also cubed or as spareribs.
9 Overall, 500f live weight is wholesale carcass but only 34 1s
retail boneless chevon meat.
10 Adapted from Chapter 14, ''Lamb Identification and Fabrication'' in
''The Meat We Eat'', 11th ed., by J. R. Rowans and P.T. Ziegler
(Danville, Ill.: The Interstate Printers & Publishers, Inc. 1977),