December 1, 2014

Wild Game Recipes: Don’t Knock It ‘Til You Try It

Nothing says to me that the holiday season is here more than cooking wild game. If you are a fan of wild game then you know what I’m talking about. If you’re not, please give me the chance to change your mind.

The wild game taste is actually a lot easier to get rid of than most people realize. With proper preparation wild game can be almost indistinguishable from domestic meats bought at the grocery store.

If you are cleaning the wild game yourself take the time to soak it properly before freezing. For wild game that is darker meat like deer or duck soak the meat in water for 24 to 48 hours. Change the water every 12 to 24 hours and after a few days the meat will turn almost completely white as the blood and adrenaline have been soaked out. Make sure and keep the soaking meat in the refrigerator or outside during the winter, so that the water and meat stay below a temperature of 45 degrees while soaking. I like to add salt to the water for the last four to eight hours of soaking to help tenderize the meat. Wild turkey isn’t as gamey tasting as most other wild game and doesn’t require quite as much soaking, so eight hours in salt water is plenty. Here are a few of my favorite recipes for cooking wild game that will surprise even the most skeptical of eaters.

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Shish Kebabs – Great for wild turkey, deer or duck:  After cooking add this heart healthy recipe over white or wild rice for a complete meal.

  • After soaking the meat, dry and cut into 2 inch by 2 inch cubes
  • Soak 4 – 6 hours in Italian Dressy or Zesty Italian Dressing. Fill bowl or container just enough to cover all of the meat thoroughly
  • While the meat is soaking chop an onion, bell pepper, tomato and mushrooms into 1 – 2 inch cubes.
  • Add the meat to a skewer stick in between layers of the chopped vegetables
  • Grill the skewers for 8 – 10 minutes on each side or if you don’t have a grill you can place the skewers on a baking pan or dish and bake in the oven at 375 degrees for 8 – 10 minutes.

Fried Venison

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In Memory This Weekend

Fried Deer or Wild Turkey: Add this recipe over white rice with gravy and homemade biscuits for an exceptional country meal.

  • After soaking the meat, dry and cut into 2 inch by 4 inch pieces
  • In a mixing bowl pour 1 or a few cups of flour depending on how much meat you are cooking
  • In a separate mixing bowl beat 3 – 6 eggs, again depending on how much meat you have
  • Take each piece of meat and dip in egg bath and then roll thoroughly in flour
  • Preheat vegetable oil (medium high heat) 1 deep in an iron skillet if you have, if not any skillet will work
  • Cook each piece about 5 – 7 minutes on each side
  • After cooking lay pieces on a plate or pan with a few layers of paper towels for a few minutes to drain the excess oil and let the meat cool

Jalapeno-Duck-Poppers

Bacon Jalapeno Duck Wraps – This recipe would probably work for deer and wild turkey as well.

  • After soaking the meat, rinse and dry and then butterfly cut each duck breast.
  • Lay each butterflied duck breast flat and in the cavity, place a tablespoon of cream cheese (or a cube of cheddar cheese) and several jalapeno peppers.
  • Fold the butterflied breast back over so the cream cheese and peppers are now in the middle. Wrap the breast with 1 piece of bacon. Secure the bacon wrap and breasts from opening with toothpicks.
  • Grill the breasts for 6 – 8 minutes on each side or if you don’t have a grill you can place the skewers on a baking pan or dish and bake in the oven at 375 degrees for 6 – 8 minutes on each side.

Brian Hook

Brian Hook works as an Account Executive for Crain Media in Searcy and is a graduate of the Journalism Department at Arkansas State University in Jonesboro. Brian is passionate about the outdoors, sports, and enjoys writing. Having grown up in different areas of Arkansas, Brian developed an early childhood love for hunting and competitive turkey calling. As a teenager Brian won many turkey calling contests that included the Junior World Championship Turkey Calling Contest, Arkansas State Junior and Intermediate Championship and Mississippi State Junior Championship along with several other contests.