I will share my experience about ordering bones from a butcher in this post.
I wasn't sure what exactly to expect when I called our local butcher. I told the lady, who answered the phone, that I was interested in beef bones and asked if those were available.
She said, yes, they sell bones. They prefer if people will make an order ahead of time, before they walk into the shop to buy bones. She said orders need to be made before 2 p.m. because that is when the the "bone man" comes and takes all of the bones. Does anyone out there know what a "bone man" is? Does he work for the glue factory? Or maybe a fertilizer plant? Those are my guesses.
She then asked me what kind of bones I would like to have. I wasn't sure. I asked her what kind of bones people usually purchase. She said, "If you want bones for broth, you'll want knuckle bones or marrow bones."
I affirmed that I did want bones for broth. I said I would take some marrow bones. Next she asked me, "How many?" I didn't have any clue about how big these things were. I asked, "How much do people usually get?"
She informed me that some people call in and want a box full, some people order 20, 30, and 40 pounds, and some people just order them by the bone, ie., 5 bones.
She said they charge $1.25 per pound for bones. And, the butcher will make sure the bones are cut to a size that would fit into a crock pot.
I was still unsure about how many bones to order, but, I took a stab in the dark, and told her that I would take 3 marrow bones.
When I got off the phone I immediately looked up knuckle bones. I saw a couple good sites suggesting that you should use a variety of bones to make healthy bone broth.
I called the butcher back and asked them to add 3 knuckle bones to my order.
Later that day when I went to pick up and pay for my bones at the butcher shop I was quiet surprised when I saw two large bags of bones in the glass case with my name on them.
Beef knuckle bones are really big!
I could only fit one in my crock pot!
I filled my crock pot with water and simmered the knuckle bone for 24 hours. After which, I added sauteed onions, celery, garlic, and carrots. I put my broth into jars and froze them for later use.
This is a picture of the bone after being boiled.
I don't think I will be running out of bones or broth for a few months! :)