Sunday, February 12, 2017

Buffalo Pheasant Cheese Dip

Shout out to our horsey friends Brit Vegas and Adam Gengenbach for the inspiration behind this appetizer. Brit and Adam belong to the mounted foxhunting club North Hills Hunt with us, and a dish that they often bring to brunches and parties is buffalo chicken dip. It is soooo good. I'm super picky when it comes to appetizers, but this stuff is addictive-- warm, cheesy and spicy. After hunting in the winter, we pile this onto our plates with lots of tortilla chips. 

So while trying to think of a wild game recipe for The Sportsman Channel during game-day party season, it made perfect sense to recreate Brit and Adam's appetizer with pheasant. It turned out great! For the recipe, visit: http://www.thesportsmanchannel.com/2017/02/buffalo-pheasant-cheese-dip-recipe/

Wednesday, February 1, 2017

Chicken Fried Elk Steaks with Brown Gravy

This elk steak came from our good friends Nick and Lindsay Tramp of northeastern Nebraska. I believe Nick shot this elk in Wyoming, and they were so kind to share some with us. After tasting it-- and it was a our first time-- Rick and I began pining to go on an elk hunt. The meat was so delicious. And it's amazing how big these animals are. Think of all that meat! One day ... 

If I had to give up beef for elk, I would be perfectly happy. It's such a well-balanced, flavorful meat. I find it richer than venison. I thought the fat also tasted good.

So if you have some elk steaks in the freezer, here's another recipe for you. We wrote it for Game and Fish Magazine here with step-by-step photos: http://www.gameandfishmag.com/recipes/chicken-fried-elk-steaks-with-brown-gravy/

Monday, January 16, 2017

Mexican Street Tacos with Rice and Beans

If I have people coming over and still have lots of venison roast in the freezer, one of my favorite dishes to prepare is venison street tacos. You can really stretch the meat far and feed a lot of people, and taco meat is also so fast and easy to season and cook. There's no need to use prime cuts such as tenderloin or loin for this dish. Just make sure that you remove as much silver skin as possible for your roast, because that won't break down, and then thinly slice the meat.

Cook rice in large batches and we like warmed canned refried beans just fine. But for homemade refried beans, check out our recipe for it here: http://foodforhunters.blogspot.com/2011/09/side-mexican-re-fried-beans.html

Make it a taco party by offering all the fixings at the "bar"-- chopped onion, fresh cilantro, pico de gallo, guacamole, your favorite salsas, hot sauces and cheeses. Be sure to have a cooler of cerveza ready. And if you want to really have some fun, keep plenty of tequila, limes and margarita mix on hand.

Find the venison street tacos recipe at Game and Fish Magazine: http://www.gameandfishmag.com/hunting/deer/venison-street-tacos-with-mexican-rice-and-beans/

Wednesday, January 11, 2017

How To: Butcher Venison Shank for Osso Buco

Ahhh... osso buco. Everyone's talking about it. And for good reason: it's FREAKING delicious. 

What is it? Osso buco is an Italian dish that is traditionally made with cross-cut veal shanks. The shanks slowly simmer in a rich vegetable, white wine and tomato broth, and when it comes out, the meat is succulent, the sauce deep, and served over polenta or rice, you'll think you died and went to heaven. Better yet, I actually think it's more delicious made with venison, which is good news for meat hunters.

We developed a venison osso buco recipe for Outdoor Channel recently, which you can find here: http://outdoorchannel.com/article.aspx?id=48930&articletype=article&key=venison-osso-buco-with-polenta-recipe&p=dc. Sure, you can make the same recipe using the whole shank or even stew meat, but it's the cross cut that makes osso buco-- osso buco. Not only is taste important here, presentation also reigns. And you wouldn't want to miss out on the prized deer marrow, which Rick and I fight over.

But how do we get that cross cut? We once tried to cut through deer bone with a meat saw. Maybe we just really suck or our saw sucked or we didn't have the teeth placed in the right direction, but it was waaaay more work than we wanted to put into it. It would've taken us all day. It was pathetic. So we abandoned the effort, until we saw a YouTube video on Facebook that showed someone cutting through deer bone with a reciprocating saw, which was a tool we already had on hand! It looked way easier than slaving over a hand saw. I can't remember who the good Samaritan was who made that video, but thank you! It worked out great. 

So, if you're looking to butcher for venison osso buco, here's one way to do it. This will work with either front or rear shanks.

Equipment:
- Sharp knife
- Reciprocating power saw, cleaned and sanitized
- New, clean blade (size?)
- Cooking twine
- Tooth picks/small brush (for cleaning saw)

1. With a sharp knife, cut into the meat all the way around the bone into 1 1/2 to 2-inch sections. Do not try to cut through both meat and bone with the saw. Saws are made for cutting through hard materials, not soft and chewy. It will be ugly if you do this.

When you get towards the end, there won't be enough meat to cut, so save those "drumsticks" for stock or something else. You also shouldn't remove the silver skin. It will soften and give the meat a nice texture when cooked. 


2. Once you have sectioned off the shanks with a knife, nestle the blade of your saw inside each cut. Anchor the shank against something so it doesn't move, but be careful not to cut through anything you don't want to underneath. Turn on the saw and cut through the bone as straight as possible. 
3. These were hind shanks and we averaged 3 pieces of osso buco per shank. 

Next, brush and/or wash off as much bone fragments and dust as humanly possible. But be gentle and try to keep the pieces intact -- they'll want to fall apart. We don't have one and have never used one, but a bone dust scraper tool may be worth looking into if you're going to do this frequently.

(It was also a bit of a pain to clean the saw after, but I was able to get all the bone dust out of the nooks and crannies with some toothpicks and blowing into the holes over the trashcan like the big bad wolf. That came out weird.)

4. To keep the osso buco intact when cooking, tie cooking twine around the circumference of each piece. The twine should just be finger tight.The cooking twine will also help the meat cook evenly. 

For Venison Osso Buco Recipe, visit: http://outdoorchannel.com/article.aspx?id=48930&articletype=article&key=venison-osso-buco-with-polenta-recipe&p=dc


Monday, January 2, 2017

Asian-style Walleye en Papillote


En papillote means “in parchment” in French. It’s a cooking technique that is especially beneficial to fish— the enclosed packet allows fish to gently cook in its own steam and remain moist. When you finally get to open up the papillote, the aromas of any vegetables and herbs added is a wonderful surprise at the dinner table. And at the bottom of the packet, you will find a delicious sauce that pairs well with rice. 

This is, by far, one of our best recipes for fish. It was so simple yet so delicious. Your guests will have so much fun opening up their own little packet to find what's inside. It's like a little present at the dinner table!

For the recipe, visit Game and Fish Magazine: http://www.gameandfishmag.com/fishing/walleye/asian-style-walleye-en-papillote-recipe/

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