Last Saturday, I was handling the sheep when a sedan pulled up. Two men came by looking for a sheep to slaughter according to halal practices. I’ve been getting calls and texts for months from the Burlington area looking for sheep, but this was the first group that just plain showed up. Yosef and Hamid came out to look at the flock, and I offered Meadowlark’s ewe lamb to them. She has grown out with poor conformation, and with no record of good production from her mother, I was willing to part. That, and considering the underwhelming pasture season this year, I need the spare hay.
We led Chickadee out with little event. Yosef recommended that the flock not watch, so Matt fed them some grain while the tractor hid the action. The end was swift, and it took about an hour for our guests to skin, gut and butcher the sheep into roasts and stew-able chunks. Matt and I helped when we could, but mostly our visitors were determined to do their work themselves. I learned that Yosef and Hamid are from Saudi Arabia and live locally in Williston. I haven’t gotten to know my neighbors as well here as I did in Brookfield, but this is progress!
When they were all done, they let me know they were planning to leave and we agreed that everything was cleaned up enough and in good shape. As turned to go to the house, Hamid called my attention. He offered me a generous area of leg meat.
“Taste what you’ve raised,” he said. I accepted the still-warm meat and roasted it all afternoon in broth with potatoes and onions. Delicious.