Lately a lot of interest has been shown in our wild game recipes. Game includes all edible wild birds and animals. Many questions are being asked about how to live cheap off the land. One way is to replace buying meat by using wild game animals so I am going to touch on a few. Hunters have lived off the wild animals from the land for generations. Most popular seem to be the venison recipes. These are made from the meat of hoofed large game animals; the deer being the favorite of most.
A venison jerky recipe is one of the universally favorites of wild games recipes. It is without a doubt one of the easiest of all cured meats to prepare. Because it is dried of all moisture, at one time it was the only way fresh meat could be preserved and stored in hot temperatures. Once the meat has been dried the weight is reduced by about 65 percent.
Start with a chunk of venison about 5 to 6 pounds. Any fat that is present in venison must be cut off. The strong gamey flavor common in wild game recipes is most pronounced in the fat and it is too tallow for humans to consume. Pull the meat apart at the natural seams to remove the globs of fat and gristle that holds the seams together. By freezing the meat slightly it will be easier to cut. With a very sharp knife slice the meat in strips ½ inch wide, ¼ inch thick and 6 inches long. Mix together a solution of:
Marinate the meat in the solution overnight; dry with paper towels. Bake in an oven at 150F degrees for 4-5 hours or until dried. Can also be dried in a dehydrator.
Game bird recipes are most commonly made from grouse, quail, partridge, pheasant and wild duck. They are prepared and cooked much like chicken. Wild game recipes are made from game birds that are very lean so they require generous use of extra fat during the cooking to prevent drying out. Light meat birds like quail and partridge should always be cooked until well done. The dark meat birds may be served rare.
Wild game recipes for tender young birds may be split and broiled like chicken. Brush generously with butter and baste frequently. To roast grouse, pheasant or partridge, wipe the bird with a damp cloth. Place thin strips of salt pork under the breast skin. Sprinkle lightly with salt. Stuff the bird with a savory dressing or wild rice stuffing. If stuffing is not desired, place a small onion in the body cavity. Place breast side up in a roasting pan and brush generously with melted butter. Cover and roast at 300F degrees until done; about 1 to 1 ½ hours.
Preheat oven to 350F degrees
Wash bird; tie legs and wings close to body. Brown the bird in butter in a skillet. Place the quail in a casserole baking dish. Add the flour to the butter left in the skillet. Slowly stir in the broth and the sherry. Add salt and pepper and stir to blend. Pour the liquid over the bird, cover and bake for one hour.
Wild game recipes also include ones made from rabbit. Rabbit recipes are made much in the same way as poultry and taste much like chicken. I remember when I was a child; my older brothers played a trick on my mom. She wouldn’t taste rabbit at all. One Sunday we had chicken and rabbit for dinner so my brother put a piece of rabbit on her plate and said it was chicken. She ate it and did not know it was rabbit.
My dad always said to soak all wild game meat in salt water to lighten the gamey flavor for wild game recipes. However, many people like that taste so it is a matter of personal preference. For fried rabbit recipes, cut the rabbit into serving sizes like you would chicken. Roll rabbit pieces into flour seasoned with salt and pepper. Place in a frying pan with hot fat. Brown pieces on each side. Add a small amount of water, cover with a lid and let the meat simmer until done. The juices left in the pan makes a delicious gravy recipe. Rabbit can also be stuffed and roasted like you would a chicken.
Bring duck to room temperature and sprinkle with seasoned salt.
Salt and pepper cavities and stuff with apples.
Place duck breast side down in roaster; put butter on bird and pour the wine over it.
Cover and cook at 300F degrees for 1 to 1 ½ hours depending on size.
Serve with orange sauce recipe.
ORANGE SAUCE FOR WILD DUCK
Quail, Duck and Jerky
Using double boiler pan, melt butter over medium direct heat.
Stir in flour and salt; gradually stir in chicken stock.
Set over hot water to keep hot.
Before serving with duck stir in orange juice, orange rind, sherry and Tabasco sauce.
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