DH and I have been together for 20 years and aside from that nasty cedar-swamp deer he got our first year together, his annual harvest has been superb. This year, however, he shoulder- shot one in late evening and had to go find it the next morning. He said it had a hanging hoof from some entrapment with some sort of twine, aside from the shoulder shot.
My question is - he harvested the heart, liver and tenderloins for me to bring home the day he found it and is hanging the rest on the buck pole. When I opened the bags to clean and wrap for freezing, I noticed the smell was "different". I can only describe it as a mix of cigarette smoke and urine. I know that sounds weird.
Have you soaked it in water and still smell bad? Blood shot meat has a bad odor also. You said he shot it in the shoulder where the heart and liver is nearby. I would say soak them in water for a while and wash and trim off all bloodshot off as much as possible. Then if it still smells bad, throw it out.
I have seen blood-shot meat and this is not that. Any other suggestions? I rubbed the tenders with baking soda and left in the fridge for a couple of hours (I know, not long enough) but the smell didn't change. Yes, I soaked in water.
we found a nice 8 point buck that had been gut shot last saturday we found it first thng sunday morning , we didn't shoot it , but we gutted it and registered it hoping to save some meat but when i went to cut it sunday afternoon it stunk so bad after having been gutted and washed hours earlier , somtimes thats just the way it is. we composted it.
Sorry, I can't help you. I never experienced venison that "smelled." All of our deer are field dressed within 30 minutes of being shot....many times, even less time passes....and then, processed right away. I am sure the smell is from a combination of the paunch starting to decompose and a hormone rush due to the stress of a slow death.
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debone the deer, rinse very well then soak in some ICY water with a touch of salt for a day or 2. if after that it still smell funky, feed it to the dogs. be sure to drain any bloody water & replace with more ice.
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Update: Dh had hung the deer and brought it home last night and butchered it this morning. The deer had absolutely no smell other than normal vension smell. I told him about the smell from the liver and such. I had frozen it by the time he brought the rest of the deer home. You can't smell it after it's frozen. I decided when the time comes to use it, if it still smells bad, the dogs will eat heartily.
The reason the organs and tenderloins smell is that these pieces were in contact with the gut cavity while the deer lay out overnight. I have had a similar experience on a couple of occasions where the deer couldn't be found until the next morning. Being stubborn I even cooked and ate the tenderloins from one that was like that and they tasted like they smelled. If it was good and cool out you should have no problems with the rest of that meat.