Life is almost back to normal here at Sassafras House. Weston’s gone to town to be with his girlfriend before they head back to Morgantown tomorrow, and I just have Ross and Morgan left here at the farm. Ross will be home until Tuesday. I put about half of the leftover turkey in the freezer, to be pulled out later for various dishes, saving out enough for sandwiches on Grandmother Bread over the next few days. While he’s here, Ross wants to eat the fruits of his labors as much as possible, and that means venison. I’m enjoying cooking with the deer meat so much. It’s delicious, lean, healthy meat–harvested right here on my farm. Ross and I are a good team–he hunts it, I cook it. If “the end of the world as we know it” ever happens, I know who I want here first!

This morning, we have light (very light) flurries, a fire in the Buck Stove, and backstrap under the broiler. Here was Ross’s breakfast plate:

Backstrap–butterflied, cooked under the broiler with salt, pepper, and garlic, with eggs and biscuits. This is so good, we will probably have it again for dinner, with baked potatoes and some hot fresh garlic bread!

The meat I’m working with now is the home-butchered meat. I made some into jerky, set some aside–marked–in the freezer for pressure canning later when I have time, and set some roasts aside, plus the backstraps, loins, and organs. The other deer is still at the high school for processing. (Not sure when that comes back.) It will be processed into standard cuts plus sausage. (Looking forward to the sausage!)

I’ve always loved cooking with venison, on the rare occasions I’ve been gifted with it, but this is the first time I’ve had someone to actually hunt on my own farm and have had the meat to play with all by myself. It’s amazing how much meat comes from a deer. I love deer–they’re beautiful creatures–but like livestock, they can also play a purpose in a self-sufficient life, and it feels GREAT!

If I could just get Ross off the couch, we could eat venison all year! (Just kidding. He deserves to relax! I only whisper, “It’s still hunting season,” very quietly. Only once an hour. Honest!)

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Posted by Suzanne McMinn on November 24, 2012  

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12 Responses | RSS feed for comments on this post

  1. 11-24

    You are right. It is so satisfying to eat what you have raised, hunted, caught,or gathered yourself. It does our bodies good and our spirits as well.

  2. 11-24

    Yum! I’ve never done it in the broiler, that looks amazing!

  3. 11-24

    Summer sausage from ground venison is really good too! I am sure that there are recipes online, but what I made was from a kit from LEM. We ground the meat at home, mixed, and stuffed in the casings, then you bake it. DELICIOUS! It was intended that year as Christmas gifts, but …… :hungry:

  4. 11-24

    Tee hee

  5. 11-24

    Glad you’re enjoying the meat. I remember venison as delicious. Doesn’t WV have a deer limit like Illinois? Here I believe you’re only allowed 2 deer more or less (something about antlers?). No one in my family hunts but there’s lots of folks around who do.

    It is kind of sad to see the dead deer but with all the wolves and other natural predators gone it is sadder to see deer staving when there are too many for the land to support. Hunting isn’t allowed in the Forest Preserves near Chicago (too dangerous in an urban/suburban area) and we get a lot of car/deer encounters and debates on how to handle that deer population.

  6. 11-24

    Yes, there is a limit, but Ross has a friend coming over to hunt this evening.

  7. 11-24

    This year, our state has a four point (four PER SIDE) minimum. Why? I have no idea.
    Love venison too. Never got an elk myself (dh did), but have hauled that horse sized carcass out with a four wheeler.
    Happy for you. Did Ross save the hide to have gloves made from?

  8. 11-24

    You brought memories of my dear Uncle John. He would always give me several steaks whenever he would get a deer. Venison is so precious I felt so loved.

  9. 11-24

    That sounds yummy! Backstrap is the best cut of meat on the deer, so tender, and I’m always shocked at how many hunters don’t even know it’s there. Gotta take it out right away, so it doesn’t get dry. We’re doing up part of my husband’s buck into homemade summer sausage tonight. Love this time of year. :D

  10. 11-24

    Suzanne – you might find this site interesting

  11. 11-25

    LOL!!! I read that title “Blackstrap” and thought you were going to grace us with something yummy like molasses. Instead you graced us with the-just as Yummy- backstrap. Nothing better than fresh delicious venison!!

  12. 11-26

    There are far feelings as good and satisfying to me, as nearly the same thing you write about in this post. What a blessing. We butchered two deer, yesterday. A long day, but I am so thankful.

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