Camp Cooking and Game Processing Trade recipes and other tricks of the trade for cooking wild game.

New Hunter, Advice on Processing?

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Old 09-04-2019, 05:06 AM
  #11  
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Ok, back on the track of processing game, I like this video by Grant Woods
and he does a good job showing how to debone one. I helped my daughter do her first with my supervision while working from home.

We have a deer cooler we built and when its warm we hang them in that to cool them so we can relax after the kill and drag. If it is not cold out, you need to cut that deer up right away and put the meat into buckets in a fridge or into a cooler and on ice. A deer killed in the early morning is far easier than a deer killed in the evening if you have to bone it all out that right then because its not cold enough out. I have not hunted or passed on deer before having the deer cooler because i thought about the work and the heat at that moment. .We have a fridge upstairs and a basement fridge I can put buckets on the bottom shelf. One with roast and back straps and one for grindage.

There is three good roasts in each hind leg and an extra loin. Two back straps up the spine. Two small tenderloins inside at the hind legs. The shoulders and the neck. The lower legs are only worth grinding or made as osso bucco and I don't like bothering with this, so I grind. Front shoulders pop off with a knife and you can bone the scapula out and make a tied roast if you are careful, but you'll probably not do it right the first time. The front leg cuts good for stew meat chucks and deer works good when wet cooked like that. The neck is difficult to bone into a roast without the bones, I grind it as I make hot dogs, sausages, summer sausage and stuff peppers with ground deer. The flank meat on the ribs is coated with fat and hard to get meat away from it. Deer fat is awful! It's strong and will over power your meat. It's great for black powder lube and stuff like that, but not for cooking, IMO!

Do not seal or freezer paper wrap for deer until it has treated for at least 24 - 48 hours. You want rigor to release on the muscles before putting it up.
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Old 09-10-2019, 04:14 PM
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ArcheryRob,

Thanks for all of the help, I've watched that video before and religiously watch Steven Rinella's field dressing video on YouTube. I'm also happy you've pointed out the different cuts, as I was afraid that people would tell me to just grind most of it up and I plan on trying a lot of cool recipes with any venison I hopefully get this autumn. As far as cooling goes, I plan on going out in the start of October for early bow season, so it'll be reasonably warm, but I don't have nearly enough fridge space for hanging a deer or cutting it up and cramming in a fridge. Do you think I could get by with a couple of coolers and ice? I don't have a big one but I have a couple of medium sized ones that I could fill up! I think next year the big purchase might be a big cooler haha. Also how did you end up making your hanging deer cooler if you don't mind me asking?
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Old 09-10-2019, 04:23 PM
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When it's warm, I just get it all cut up asap.

If necessary you could break it down and put in coolers. I don't like to leave meat laying on ice though. Only have done that a few times when necessary.

-Jake
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Old 09-11-2019, 04:28 AM
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Originally Posted by SMBowHunter97 View Post
ArcheryRob,

Thanks for all of the help, I've watched that video before and religiously watch Steven Rinella's field dressing video on YouTube. I'm also happy you've pointed out the different cuts, as I was afraid that people would tell me to just grind most of it up and I plan on trying a lot of cool recipes with any venison I hopefully get this autumn. As far as cooling goes, I plan on going out in the start of October for early bow season, so it'll be reasonably warm, but I don't have nearly enough fridge space for hanging a deer or cutting it up and cramming in a fridge. Do you think I could get by with a couple of coolers and ice? I don't have a big one but I have a couple of medium sized ones that I could fill up! I think next year the big purchase might be a big cooler haha. Also how did you end up making your hanging deer cooler if you don't mind me asking?

My butcher hangs my deer in the walk in for 6 to 7 days before he cuts it up. Hanging a deer makes a difference in the flavor. Check around now before you kill a deer and see if you can find a butcher who will hang your deer before he cuts it up. He also has a skinning crew that skin the deer as soon as they are dropped off. It is is warm, I usually put two bags of ice in the body cavity as soon as I can for the trip to the butcher shop which takes about an hour from where I hunt.
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Old 09-11-2019, 09:30 AM
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Lots of guys debone or quarter a deer and throw it in a cooler with ice. I don;t, but the guys that do recommend having one with a drain plug and leaving it open and on an angle to let the water drain out. I soak goose breast to get all the blood out all the time, so i can't imagine water is going to hurt the meat.

If you are limited on fridge space look at meat lugs. They are wide and long and not tall. Many you can get 40 - 50# of meat in. I use them when curing goose breast as I can have a crap load in one and only take up one shelf. We also have a second fridge in the basement. It is just about needed for making your own bologna, snack sticks and thawinging meat out for it. I make 20# of one or two recipes for the smokehouse and it would never fit in the kitchen fridge.
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Old 09-11-2019, 09:33 AM
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Take a nice steak, any animal and throw it in ice water for a couple of days, then look at it. I bet you wouldn't eat it.

Last edited by Bocajnala; 09-16-2019 at 03:54 PM. Reason: Edited for OT for typo
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Old 09-15-2019, 06:00 AM
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I have hunted for many years now and taken many animals. I must say that maybe I have done 2 deer on the ground. I found it not all that much fun and messy with woods debris, maybe a tarp under the deer would have helped. I have been taking my deer to a local deer processing shop that skins them quickly and lets hang several days before cutting. Here in the EP of WV that runs about $70 and yields maybe 35 pds. of meat including burger. Processing them at home requires lots of patience and good knives, etc.
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Old 09-16-2019, 04:14 AM
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Originally Posted by Oldtimr View Post
Take a nice steak, any animal and throw it in ice water for a couple of days, then look at it. I bet you would eat it.
Damn straight, I'm too cheap to throw anything away. They wife tries to throw away food and I'm like I paid for that! The dog or chickens will eat it if no one else does.

My wife tells me 10 days of soaking goose breasts is making them spoil. I told her "Do you know how long they hang beef sides at the butcher? Ten days to 2 weeks." dry aged steaks are awesome and then my cheap gene kicks in when I see how much they cut off the outside and toss.
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Old 09-16-2019, 01:19 PM
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Meat hanging in a cool dry environment with air moving around it and soaking in bacteria laced water for 10 days, even in a refrigerator are two entirely different things, and have two entirely different results. One is crap, the other is good eating and the good eating does not come from the meat that was soaking in water for 10 days. I would not feed that to my dog, I might feed it to a democrat though.
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Old 09-16-2019, 03:02 PM
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Originally Posted by Oldtimr View Post
Take a nice steak, any animal and throw it in ice water for a couple of days, then look at it. I bet you would eat it.
You must have had a typo here OT. It seems you're saying soaking in ice water for that long is ok. And I wasn't going to argue with you on it. I just knew I wouldn't be doing it lol.

But in your last post I see what you meant.

-Jake
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