Yes, You Can Learn To Make Melt-In-Your Mouth Venison
By Pat Carrothers
Once you’ve claimed the big game, aged and processed the deer, and placed all of the meat into the freezer, you then have to figure out ways to cook venison so you and your family can enjoy the meat you provided. There are quite a few ways to cook venison. Some of the methods involve using dry heat, grilling, roasting, braising, and even stewing. Here are some guidelines to help you make sure the venison is tender and tasty.
If you want to broil some venison, you will be most pleased if you use chops, steaks, or loins. These pieces of meat have all the fat trimmed from them and they work well when they are broiled. Since the pieces are lean, you may need to add a little salt pork or bacon fat before you place seasoning on the meat. Then, preheat your broiler and let the temperature rise before you place the meat on the rack. Make sure the rack is far enough away from the heat source so the meat does not burn or get tough. Broiled meat is usually done before you think it is so check it often.
The best cuts for grilling are the rump and loin, but there are others that can turn out well. You want to marinate your meat before grilling, or you can simply apply cooking oil to each side. This helps ensure the texture of the meat is not tough after it is cooked. Be careful if you add salt before grilling because that can make the game meat dry out. Once the meat’s on the grill, cook it to your desired level and enjoy the great aromas.
Chops, steaks, and loins work well when pan-fried. These types of meat have no natural fat, so you will likely want to add a little oil to keep the meat savory and moist. When the pan heats up, season the game as you like, or you can marinate it for a few hours before you throw it in the pan. I’ll dash a lot of tenderizer on the leanest cuts and fork it in to help prevent tough chewing. Once the pan is ready, set the meat in and watch for the blood in the cut to appear on the top. Once you see this reaction, flip the meat over and repeat the process until it’s done.
Oven roasting is good for the rib roast or loin portion of the deer. Before you begin cooking the meat, make sure it’s free from excess fat and then season it with any herbs or spices you might enjoy. Do not add too much salt, however, because this can dry the meat out during the cooking process. Save salt for after it is cooked. That’s a good rule for any meat. If it’s a bone in roast, put the bone on the bottom of the pan. Let the meat sit in the oven at 300 degrees for 20 minutes for each pound of meat in the cut. Use a meat thermometer to make sure the center of the meat is ready before you remove it from the oven.
There are many other ways to cook venison including braising, stewing, grounding and plenty more. Experiment with small cuts of meat to find your favorite and then you can go back and cook more in the ways you most enjoyed.
Venison can be switched out for red meat in any of your best recipes, with one big warning sign, “Caution – Tough Chewing Ahead.” Venison is a naturally lean meat. That can lead to putting a hockey puck on everyone’s plate if you don’t manage it right. Here are six tips to help you serve killer venison:
Six Tips For Great Tasting Venison
1. Never overcook venison or other lean meats. They will dry out and become tough. Venison is not usually good past the medium well range. If you choose to roast the venison, try covering the pan with foil for the last 15 minutes. The juices will spread out evenly and the meat will cook with less drying.
2. Slow methods of cooking, such as roasting, are generally the best way to keep the venison moist.
3. Do not add salt to the meat before you cook it. Salt can remove juice and dry venison. Salt is for the table or at least for right before serving.
4. Make sure all the connective tissues are removed before you cook venison. These tissues leave an undesirable taste that can ruin the overall effect. Our Havalon Baracuta with fillet blades is great for trimming venison! I guarantee you’ll love it, and if you don’t, we’ll give you your money back.
5. Marinating venison is highly recommended. The acids in a marinade (like wine, vinegar or citrus juice) help tenderize the meat and add flavor. Oil in the marinade helps keep the meat moist.
6. Venison burgers taste great on the grill, but they may need extra moisture since the meat is very low in natural fat. You may want to wrap a piece of bacon around the patties or place an egg in the mixture to bind it together as it cooks. I often lay a strip or two of bacon over meat roasts too. With bacon, how can you go wrong?
Getting hungry yet? What’s your favorite way to cook venison?
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