Here’s a great video from Bon Appétit, which gives you a real insight into the skill and knowledge required to butcher a whole cow.
In it, Jason Yang of Fleishers Craft Butchery sets to work on a side of beef, breaking down each of the four sections – round, loin, rib and chuck – into their constituent cuts. He covers almost all the cuts you can take from a cow.
It’s a fascinating process. Whether you’re a professional chef or an enthusiastic home cook it’s great to know where the cuts come from on the animal and the work it takes to get to them. It’s the kind of knowledge that will help you pick the right cuts for whatever you're cooking next time you’re at the butcher’s too.
And, it’s great to see a real master at work. The speed and dexterity with which he butchers the animal is amazing to watch, plus that’s one sharp knife. It’s a longish video, but well worth watching to the end.