Sunday, August 2, 2009

Culture camp how to butcher a seal demo

One of the features of Culture Camp was the preparation of traditional Unangan foods, in this case, a harbor seal. Sally Swetsoff demonstrated how to butcher the seal.

The head is already off. Sally is starting to slice the seal down the middle, belly up.


Here you can see the wind pipe and the layer of white blubber on top of very dark colored flesh.

The seal is completely opened up revealing the intestines.

The judgment of some is that this is a smelly process.

The seal carcass with the intestines removed.


Sally is cutting the connective tissue between coils of intestine. Intestines are later cleaned, braided with strips of blubber, boiled and eaten.

Sally has removed all the organs and is beginning to cut up the meat.

Each pied of meat is cut so it has a chunk of blubber with it. The meat by itself is completely fat free and has no marbeling. Hence, fat which is an important nutrient in a cold climate has to be added in.

4 comments:

abduk said...

Thanks for the great blog.Great looking at your boats.Not to mention its kinda weird to find a kayaker who thinks killing anything outside a cow or chicken to be cruel.

And now I'm hungry!
Time to get on the phone and see if I can get some seal sent my way tomorrow.

Wolfgang Brinck said...

Any animal, by definition almost, is something that needs to eat other living things or their by-products to stay alive. Kind of hard to get around that unless somebody figures out how to graft a photo-synthesis gene into the the animal genome. I think that most people that don't eat certain things on ethical grounds have options of what not to eat because they have access to a lot of other stuff that they can eat.
the main reason I don't eat much seal is that it is illegal in most circumstances for me to have seal meat in my possession.

abduk said...

yep agree.
they usually have a huge disconnect with how their meat comes to their tables as well.

Good to read a kayak blog that is a total reverse from "save the" crowd.

Im all for management of resources and preserving nature.I'm also all for killing meat and eating it.Somehow most assume if your not against eating/killing seals your anti environment etc.Simply not the case.

Well done, enjoy the blog.

kimberly said...

Nowadays is very important to know about different culture specially because many people travel from differents country. When we have some knowledge about the cultures we can understand better the people and we can understand ourselve in a simple way, and is easy to forget any taboo that impide the enjoyment of our life.
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