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Venison first timer.. Help.

post #1 of 22
Thread Starter 
So I've never hunted or ever smoked any sort of wild game. My father however hunts all the time. He knows I've got my new smoker and wants me to smoke some of his venison..

He said he is bringing me over some ground venison and a 4 pound roast..

I've done some searching and read a few qviews and while impressive, most are pretty elaborate for me to try on a first attempt..

Any basic "square 1" ideas you guys can share with me? It doesn't have to be overly simple, but I want to start at the beggining and not jump straight into making pastrami or my own sausage..

post #2 of 22
venison being very lean cut of meat is going to need something to keep it moist while cooking. i use bacon when i'm smoking lean meat or any kind of fat that can be laid on top of it. some try to keep it moist by spritzing it. i think the fat method works better.
post #3 of 22
What duck killer said. Fat over the top of the roast is your friend. You might consider making jerky out of the ground venison. Otherwise, we use the ground game meat in chili or mixed with ground beef in meatloaf, etc.
post #4 of 22
Thread Starter 
Thanks fr the help guys.. I was all ready to try this recipe I found, but didn't see anything about bacon in it.. Now I'm worried as I agree Bacon would be a must.. So is this recipe worthless or does it sound good with bacon added?

5-6 pound venison roast
1 cup salt
1 cup sugar
5 Tablespoons black pepper
1 Tablespoon sage
1 Tablespoon ground cloves
1 Tablespoon tarragon
1 Tablespoon soy sauce
1 Tablespoon thyme
2 bay leaves
Combine all the ingredients except the venison roast in a large bowl. Add about 2 quarts water. Stir vigorously until all salt and sugar are dissolved and ingredients are thoroughly mixed.
Puncture the roast over and over again with a fork in order to let the marinade fully permeate the meat. Place the meat in the bowl making sure the roast is completely covered with the marinade. Let stand in refrigerator for about 4 days. Turn the meat once per day.
Remove the roast from the marinade and let stand for an hour or so to fully drain.
Place the roast in a smoker or cooker and follow the directions included on the smoker. Cook slowly until the internal temperature of the meat reads at least 165° F on your meat thermometer.
When done slice meat into thin slices and serve immediately.
post #5 of 22
That looks like a good marinade, but I disagree with just stirring it to combine. I would put the ingrediants in a pot with a couple cups of water and simmer first to get the flavors combined into the water. Then you cool it down with ice and what water you need to fullfill the recipe. Then marinate or inject into the meat. Once it has soaked in the marinade, (not sure I agree with 4 day's. personally I would go 24 hours) wrap that bad boy in the highest fat cheap bacon you can find. Litteraly cover every inch of that roast, then smoke it. Make sure not to overcook. I totally disagree with 165°. That would make it shoe leather. I would take it to about 135, then wrap in foil and let rest for at least 30 minutes before serving. The whole recipe kind of reminds me of someone trying to make cured and smoked venison. I cook several hundred pounds of wild game every year for my family. Cooked right it's awesome. overcooked it's fed to the circular file. If your dad wants an awesome recipe for venison steaks, PM me. I have an easy recipe, that wow's everyone.
post #6 of 22

Venison and Marinade

My spin on venison is a little different, I used to marinade it because thats what every body does.

Now I just use black crushed pepper, salt sometimes a little garlic, sometimes some onions. Keep it basic. Venison has a distinct flavor, savor it.

If you want a piece of venison to taste like chicken, inject it with chicken broth, if you want it to taste like beef, inject it with beef broth.

The marinade that you listed looks good and if left to soak for 4 days definitely will change the taste. I agree with forthwind 1 day is plenty, wrap in bacon and do not over cook, I find that venison cooks pretty fast.

You can always make a fattie out of the ground.

Let us know how it all turns out....
post #7 of 22
the fatty idea sounds great! never thought of a venison fatty. great idea nickelmore! and he's also right about the unique taste that venison has, if ya want it to taste like something else you might as well make the thing you want it to taste like, lol. venison , or any other game is great when not overcooked but real bad when overcooked. most of the time if someone says they don't like "deer meat" or goose meat, it's because the one who cooked it overcooked it. i make medium rare to medium, no more. good luck!
post #8 of 22
Thread Starter 
Thanks for all the help guys.. I currently have that roast in a brine and weather permitting, plan to smoke it tommorow..

I'll be using pecan wood as I got a great deal locally on it.. Never have used pecan before..

I made a brine.. Not sure if it is good but got so confused looking at all the different recomendations that I tried to make my own.. Just used some spices I had laying around with salt and sugar..

A couple more questions..

1.) I read (a little too late) that table salt isn't recomended for brining.. I just used regular mortons salt. Is this a huge problem?

2.) I plan on smoking in the 220 to 240 range (haven't quite mastered the art of steady temp yet).. How long should I expect it to cook for? It's closer to 3 pounds than 4.. I plan to pull it at 135...

3.) And this is a general smoking question. I'm trying to master the art of TBS and haven't yet.. I'm using RO hardwood charcoal and pecan wood.. I had been soaking my wood and setting them right on the edge of the coals.. 2 to 3 chunks at a time.. Should they be touching the coals or just barely away from making contact? It seems there just is no way to add them to coals when they're touching without producing that initial thick char smoke..

Thanks in advance to anyone who could knock one of these questions out for me..
post #9 of 22

Type of salt

All depends on how much you used, for brines i don't think it matters as much as for sausage making. Regular salt contains iodine that can alter some tastes.

Kosher salt is what I use for brining and sausage.

Another hint, write down what you used in your brine, if you like it you can remember it.

Someone else will be along to help with the other stuff.

Good luck, let us know what the brine was and how it turned out.
post #10 of 22
Your method sounds fine...and i wouldnt worry about the salt this time. Dont inject any of the marinade if you are going to keep ir rare-med rare. Injecting into the inner muscle will introduce bacteria thats not present with the muscle un punctured. It wont take very long to reach the 135 internal and only being 3 lbs. Im guessing that within 2 hours you will be there. Maybe stay to the lower end of your range to get a little more time in the smoke. But pecan will be good...not too strong for the venison. Also, you dont need to soak your chunks. You can just throw them on. They wont smoke as much, but it will be a nice clean smoke. TBS as its called here. mix some in with your charcoal and then when you put your lit charcoal onto the unlit coal throw a couple more hunks on top. Then while your smoker comes to temp they will be burning and putting off that nice clean smoke.
post #11 of 22
Looking forward to hearing how the venison comes out. Hope you take pics for us!
post #12 of 22
if you can find applewood smoked bacon i would use that, i use it when i cut venison back straps into 1" thick steaks and grill them or pan sear then the whole pan into oven..........bob

post #13 of 22
Thread Starter 
You guys are AWESOME!!

Everything went very well today. In fact, for the first time, I maintained TBS and temp stayed locked between 220-227 the entire cook...

I've added some pictures per request. This can be my trial run for a later "q-view"...

I brined it with a mixture of spices. Some crushed red pepper turmerik and a few others. I kind of just wanted to use what I had laying around and got a little adventorous..

Here's a pic in the brine..

post #14 of 22
Thread Starter 
Here's a pic right before I smoked it..
post #15 of 22
Thread Starter 
After I pulled it...

post #16 of 22
Thread Starter 
And a sliced shot..

(I'l be going and reading up on how to do a proper qview after this.. Thanks for baring with me)

post #17 of 22
And the flavor results are?????

It sure looks great. Properly cooked and juicy!

points.giffor getting the job done well!
post #18 of 22
It looks awesome to me.
post #19 of 22
Thread Starter 
Oh yeah, guess I left out the most important detail..lol

The taste was excellent. Very tender and moist. My dad loved it and my wife even was willing to eat a little and she is a little squemish when it comes to game meats..

I think I might have put a little too much salt in as the only complaint I had was it was overly salty.. That perhaps could have been a result of using the Morton's and not a kosher or sea salt?

Anyways, thanks again for all the help. Next time I'll make sure I have enough time to do a proper qview and spend a little more time making my pictures more presentable..
post #20 of 22
You did a fine job bud. Everyone starts somehwere. You will get a heavier "sodium" taste with regular salt versus kosher or sea salts. of course there are like 50 types of sea salts that have their own attributes, but sea salts are typically used as a finishing touch, and not for marinating or cooking. Get yourself a box of kosher salt, and you will notice the difference right away with all your cooking.
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