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Tips on Keeping the Venison Fresh Longer

Aug 17, 2007
Sometimes, we have to keep the deer meet for longer time before we can finish it all. There are ways to keep the meat in better condition if we cannot finish them in a short time.

Venison lends itself well to mincemeat. The neck is the part to use. Beef suet should be used rather than the fat of the deer, which has a tallowy texture that is objectionable when cold. This is particularly objectionable to people with false teeth. I sometimes use some of this tallow when pan-broiling venison steak and relish a small amount when it is hot. When cold it is not appetizing to me.

It is often desirable to preserve a portion of a deer for future use. Any meat that is to be preserved by any method should be taken care of as soon as possible after it is killed. Aging before preserving is not necessary or desirable. In this modern age, quick freezing is the answer to preservation.

In the far north, trappers and other wilderness dwellers who depend on wild meat for food have always used nature's Deepfreeze. The meat is hung outdoors and nature does the rest. There are seldom any warm days and it keeps in a frozen condition all through the winter. In past years I have used this method here in Maine, and, while there was some thawing and freezing, there was very little spoilage. I would skin the deer, cut it up as usual, use the back as fresh meat and hang the four legs in an open shed out of the sun, letting them freeze. Any spoilage which occurred was on the outside and could be trimmed off before cooking. This meat kept well and was aged to perfection before spring, in spite of the fact that recognized authorities claim that frozen meat does not age.

On one occasion I killed a deer near the end of the season and after the necessary state inspection and other delays I did not arrive home with it until well into the evening. I was cold and hungry so I hung the deer in the shed and went into the house to eat and thaw out after the day's hunt. I did not get around to skinning the deer until the next day and by that time it had frozen so hard that it was next to impossible to start the skin.

There were three licenses in my family at the time and mine was the last to be filled. We had plenty of meat on hand and I decided to leave my deer in its frozen condition for future use. The meat kept all right, but I will never freeze a deer with the hide on again. When the time came for me to use the meat, I would saw outa chunk, take it into the house and wait for it to thaw enough so that I could remove the skin, and then try to pick out the hairs which were in the meat as a result of the sawing. From that time on I have always skinned my deer before freezing.

Next to freezing, canning is the best method of preserving venison. Cook the meat as you like it best, pack it in jars and process it the same as any meat. If there are any meat juices or gravies as a result of the cooking, be sure to include them with the meat in the cans or jars. Freezing and canning the meat is the best way to preserve the verison, if you want to freeze the verison, make sure that you have removed the skin to make you easier before the cooking.
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