Tips for Preparing Venison – From the Field to the Table

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Deer hunting can be one of the best times of the year. For most people, it is a great time to get outdoors and relax by yourself or with family or friends. Venison is also one of the healthiest meats, since most deer are organic and free-ranging consumers. Although it is very healthy, preparation is key. Here are a few tips to savor the rich and healthy benefits venison has to offer.

According to the article Expert Tips For Proper Venison Preparation by the Grandview Outdoors, “The first step to keeping your venison from tasting like it was run over by a semi is quality field care, and this really begins with the shot.” Making a clean, well-placed shot is key, as the longer it takes a deer to die the more adrenaline and lactic acid builds up in systems. This can make the meat tough and the flavor off.

The article goes on to state that cleaning the animal and getting the vital organs out of the deer is vital. “Once blood stops pumping the decomposition process begins, and the internal bacteria goes to work. This process is accelerated in higher temperatures, so it’s vital to get the internal organs out and get the meat cooling immediately.” They suggest stuffing a block of ice into the deer’s cavity or putting it on ice or in a cooler as soon as possible.

The next step to preserving the integrity of the meat is to get off the coat and as much gristle, fat and silver skin as possible. This also can help cut down on processing time and helps the meat stay tender. If you are processing the meat yourself, they suggest looking for where muscles
connect and membranes run to make your cuts. “Following these natural cut lines will allow you to separate your cuts so you can pick the best ones for the type of cooking you want to achieve.”

The last tips they share have to do with cooking the venison. Because venison is so lean, it does not take as long to cook as some other proteins. The best way to enjoy venison is rare with an internal temperature of 130 degrees. For recipe ideas, go to our Wild Game Recipes page on our website or follow us on Pinterest.

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