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  #31  
Old 10/12/10, 08:22 PM
 
Join Date: Feb 2008
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Wow! Somebody is digging up some old bones aren't they?

You do not have to age venison, if you don't want to. In my neck of the woods more then likely the weather will be too warm to hang a deer for very long. So most of the time I quarter mine up and stick it in a large ice chest with several bags of Ice placed inside with the meat. As soon as it's cooled down I'll start cutting it up. However, if we do get a fairly long cold spell and I happen to kill one, I will let it hang several days. Letting it age doesn't get rid of the gamey taste but it does tenderize the meat somewhat.

A cuz of mine gave me a huge buck one day, all he wanted was the head & horns and gave me the rest in turn for capping the head out for him. I placed that buck in a walk in cooler and let it hang for 16 days before I finally got around to processing him. After 16 days of hanging in the cooler he was as tender as any young deer I had ever eaten. You could cut the steaks with a fork and he tasted very good.

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  #32  
Old 10/16/10, 12:30 PM
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Depends on the weather. For example, this current hunting season started early October was unseasonably warm with day temps in the 70's and it hasn't gone below freezing or very cold at all at night. So, guys out hunting in camps in the bush have had a rough time keeping their moose and deer meat from spoiling unless bringing it back quick to cool in the locker or cut up within hours for freezer camp. In most 'usual' hunting seasons, hanging deer for about a week if the day temps are cool (below 40 or so) and not hard freezing nights, works well. If you plan to can or process deer or grind for burger, there isn't any need for hanging.

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  #33  
Old 10/16/10, 06:05 PM
 
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As far as I know the "gamey" taste comes from the fat combined with bad handling. As far as cutting out the glands that is an old wives tale. Glandular activity stops when something is dead. I worked in a slaughterhouse and the guy who ran it told me that. He said if it makes you feel all manly go for it. My daughter and her husband do deer processing. Her husband worked as a butcher for 20 years. Because of nuisance permits almost all the red meat they eat is venison. They seem to have the prcess knocked. They even got my MIL (animal activest wacko) to Accidently" eat some and she was none the wiser. Some of the best roast beef she ever had.

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  #34  
Old 10/16/10, 11:07 PM
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"As far as I know the "gamey" taste comes from the fat combined with bad handling"

NOT true, not with deer, they have their own NATURAL wild game flavor. Domestic livestock might get "gamey" if you handle it wrong but not deer.
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  #35  
Old 10/17/10, 12:08 AM
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just my own personal experience talking here...but feed has a lot to do with taste.it seems to me that farm and lowland deer rarely ever taste "gamey". i have only ever had a few of my own deer (those that i knew how they were handled after killed) that have tasted even remotely "gamey". those were taken in areas with no grasses or crops. they were browsing on forest viddles...including sage and such. the fat doe pictured below had access to crops and probably a corn feeder most of the year...and tasted very much like beef.

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  #36  
Old 10/17/10, 08:14 AM
 
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There could be some truth to that. Most of the deer I've eaten were taken in heavily farmed areas. My buddy and I often joke that the deer we take out back feed better then most beef animals. I have had "big woods" deer however that had no gamey flavor either. Another factor may be that we each have our own individual tastes. What tastes great to me may turn other people off or visa versa.

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  #37  
Old 10/17/10, 08:33 AM
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That is SOME fat off that doe!!!! I killed a buck 2 Novembers ago and he has fat like that on his butt, it was crazy. But he tasted GREAT!

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  #38  
Old 10/20/10, 04:31 PM
 
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I love Iowa Early Seasom Muzzle Loader season. There is something about shooting deer in a t shirt. It is 70 degrees out at 2:10 PM CDT when I shot a spike buck. It will be 5 or 6 hours from standing in the woods to being in the freezer. I would like to leave a deer hang over night to make sure all of the body heet is out but at 70 it is not going to happen.
I have had big bucks taste bad durning the rut. If I am after meat I will not shoot a big buck unless he is real big durning the rut. There are enough deer around here that I just let the mid sized bucks walk. I have a 180 class rack in the barn so why shoot anything less.
Steve

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  #39  
Old 10/20/10, 07:57 PM
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yup as soon as I can its gutted, hung skinned (less then an hour field to that point) and let to cool (that depends on temps), some times I help it a bit by quartering and put it in coolers with ice. gives me time to cut on it, also cool meat is easier to cut even semi frozen is ok ,warm meat has a tendency to tear where and when you dont want it.

but the coolers serve a few purposes.
they will also keep it from freezing solid in cold temp and cool in warm weather.
from drying out and geting "blood stained".
but most of all help me make the best use of my time by performing those options.
I try to pull as much membrane,tendon,sinew as possiable as well as debone and that can take me a bit as its only me cutting. If I got a good partner can have a decent deer in the freeze in 3 hours. but I like to spend hunting hours hunting and cut when I cant be shooting. I some times drag it out over a week adding Ice and draining water and blood as nessary. thats real important as the blood will go rank long before the meat doing it that way. when Im done it looks like a yote pack had done it in nothin but bones .

inner loins are always the first thing to go though, they get nasty if you leave them in well the carcass cools and it makes for a nice breakfast the next morning. some mushrooms little onion lots of butter and eggs any way you like (nice runny yolks) toast mmm. best part of the season.

Ive had it both ways, but as pointed out there are factors to consider if its close to a constant 35 but not over 40 and out of direct light you could hang it a week. you need to skin and cool it down though that hide will hold heat awhile.
Ive seen deer consumed like that in the course of a week, just cut off what you need. but I think when it comes to tender its more age and the "stress" effect when killed.

Cf I would never compare my venny to beef its so much better lol....

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  #40  
Old 10/25/10, 09:18 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cabin Fever View Post
I have never "aged" a deer carcass. Processing starts within 12 hours of the harvest. Our venison has never been tough or gamey. You can hardly tell it from beef.
Aye, shoot it, tag it, get it registered with the DNR, and get it in the freezer as soon as it has cooled. There is nothing to be gained and plenty to be lost in letting a dead deer "age".
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  #41  
Old 10/26/10, 10:02 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Janis Sauncy View Post
I used to be a meat wrapper for a farm butcher and his opinion (thirty plus years in the business) is that game does not need to be aged, just completely cooled down. The same with hogs. He said the only meat that needs to be hung and "aged" is beef.

Janis
I agree, although I don't work for a processor we go to the same guy for years. He says the same thing....The only meat that needs to age is Beef.

When I shoot my deer it goes to our processor the next morning after I head to the DNR feild office to have it checked for age, etc.
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  #42  
Old 10/27/10, 12:52 AM
 
Join Date: May 2002
Location: South Central Wisconsin
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It has always depended upon the weather. There were many times when deer were shot in the morning and in the freezer that same night. Those were also the hardest to work with on the table. There's been some which were not cut up until 2 or 3 days later. Those were the easiest to work with. Either way, number one rule was always to skin it as soon as possible. Other than refrigeration, that's the quickest way to cool the carcass. The one condition that I hated almost as much as "slimy fresh" was frozen solid. Unavoidable several times but never by choice. The simple key to easy processing is to have it cool and dry when applicable.

Martin

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  #43  
Old 10/27/10, 01:02 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WstTxLady View Post
That is SOME fat off that doe!!!! I killed a buck 2 Novembers ago and he has fat like that on his butt, it was crazy. But he tasted GREAT!
I've had two bucks like that of which one was a 13-pointer. That one had been hit by a vehicle when young and every rib and a shoulder on one side had been broken at a young age. The other was an 8-pointer and had a front leg broken at the elbow and it healed in locked position. Despite being old deer, their meat was the color of a doe and 2" of fat on their rumps. And the reason? For most of their life, all they ever did was walk since neither could run. Wasn't a tough piece of meat on either of them!

Martin
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  #44  
Old 10/27/10, 11:30 AM
 
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I want it hung as soon as possible, bled and skinned right in the field. Then I wrap it and move it. If cold I will let it hang, if not it gets quartered and hung in the spring house. I like 3 days myself. I also remove all the sinew, fat and connective tissue when I process it. I learned all this from an old Indian friend. I would rather eat the meat "fresh" for 2 weeks than freeze it, thaw it and then eat it. When I was a kid we had venison all winter, salt packed in crocks for up to 6 weeks. The salt packed meat was the most tender meat I have ever eaten. A little green at times but tender. We had no freezer....James

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  #45  
Old 10/29/10, 09:45 AM
 
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Location: Illinois
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Alot of the gamey taste comes from the deer actually starting to spoil before being processed. The method of the kill or the act of "reducing to possession" will affect meat quality too. Deer drives can be bad at times for good venison. Good hard hit thru the ribs/lung/heart or an ethical neck shot seldom contributes to gamey meat on an unexcited/relaxed/browsing deer. Run that same deer over hill and dale with the pumpkin army blazing away and you'll most likely have a deer thats a good candidate for the grinder and jerky at best.

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  #46  
Old 10/29/10, 04:59 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by backwoodsman View Post
Alot of the gamey taste comes from the deer actually starting to spoil before being processed.
NOT true. We have killed and completely processed a deer in probably the fastest time ever withOUT dropping the temp of the meat or compromising the meat by spoilage or other stuff and it had that GREAT gamey taste.

Im sorry deer is deer, not beef and does NOT need to be hung for better quality unless its some pen raised fat thing. Deer is SUPPOSED to have the wild, gamey taste. I have known some people who swear the don't like the taste but when I ask then why make a HUGE fuss over taking them. I get silence.
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  #47  
Old 10/29/10, 11:17 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WstTxLady View Post
NOT true. We have killed and completely processed a deer in probably the fastest time ever withOUT dropping the temp of the meat or compromising the meat by spoilage or other stuff and it had that GREAT gamey taste.

Im sorry deer is deer, not beef and does NOT need to be hung for better quality unless its some pen raised fat thing. Deer is SUPPOSED to have the wild, gamey taste. I have known some people who swear the don't like the taste but when I ask then why make a HUGE fuss over taking them. I get silence.

Im going to go out on a limb here but I think what BWM was trying to get across is most people turned off by venison is due from the mishandling of the meat prior to harvest as in stressing the animal prior to death and after due to
misconceptions on how to handle it after the kill. that includes cooking, my dad thinks venny should be cooked in onion gravy like liver?
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  #48  
Old 10/30/10, 12:42 AM
 
Join Date: May 2002
Location: South Central Wisconsin
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Originally Posted by ||Downhome|| View Post
Im going to go out on a limb here but I think what BWM was trying to get across is most people turned off by venison is due from the mishandling of the meat prior to harvest as in stressing the animal prior to death and after due to
misconceptions on how to handle it after the kill. that includes cooking, my dad thinks venny should be cooked in onion gravy like liver?
Not disagreeing with you but mishandling and stress often do get blamed for the quality of the meat when there are many other factors. 50-60 years ago, deer hunting in Wisconsin meant long trip to the upper third of the state which was recovering from a massive lumber deforestation. That was great for deer population with plenty of browse. Didn't matter how the meat was handled or if the deer were shot in their sleep, they tasted bad. Especially so since only bucks were shot. Down in the lower third of the state, I've had several bucks that just did didn't taste right and both shot very early on opening morning. Since it was in agricultural land, it wasn't the diet but that both were quite virile and simply neglected to eat for a month. I equate the taste to iodine and very similar to pigeon meat. And how or why can venison and pigeon meat taste like iodine? Neither have gall bladders!

Martin
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  #49  
Old 10/30/10, 01:57 AM
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I dont disagree with you either Martin, that would be another factor and one I never consider as I hunt the farm fed deer,sure they get some wild forage to but I dont thing they are just eating cedars and junipers.

I also prefer a fat doe to a rutting buck , horn dont have much nutrition.
but I have had bucks that where in rut and tasted just fine, but hormones and condition factor in also so I will concur.

so I agree there are many reasons your game could be off, but thats where the cook should be able to factor in the equation?

I was told to soak it in salt water for a few hours at least before cooking
over night being better with a good fresh soak to draw out the salt, I do think it does help, if it where a little tasty I would use beer or milk with a little salt added.

I really do like the beer marinade,little garlic salt and pepper and just about anything is good to go.

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