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Preparing and Cooking Venison

January 19, 2011
By Ralph Scherder, Hunting Editor
Hopefully you were successful last season and have a freezer-full of venison. Few things satisfy me more than feasting on venison that I have harvested. It’s the circle of life — from the field to our dinner tables. The ancient Romans lauded the pleasures of hunting for and consuming wild game and so should we. Historians suggest that venison has been consumed longer as a food than other meats, including beef, chicken, and pork.

Often overlooked, however, are the nutritional benefits of a venison diet:

A 3.5 ounce serving has .74 ounces of protein as opposed to .55 ounces in beef

A 3.5 ounce serving has 126 calories. 3.5 ounces of beef contains 288 calories

A 3.5 ounce serving has .14 ounces of fat. Beef contains .86 ounces of fat.

Most importantly, venison is very low in saturated fat.

Considering these nutritional values, it’s no wonder that people who make venison an ongoing part of their diet are often quite healthy. Not to mention all of the exercise one gets while out in the field pursuing whitetails!

Venison has a delicious natural flavor and can be prepared any way that you prepare beef. However, keep in mind that venison can toughen rapidly, so be careful not to over-cook the meat. Venison is best served medium rare to well done.

Storing venison until it is consumed is the same as storing beef. It should always be kept at cold temperatures, either refrigerated or frozen. Venison roasts, steaks and chops will keep in the refrigerator for two to three days. If the venison is wrapped properly, it will stay fresh in the freezer for approximately a year.

Here’s one of my favorite recipes to get you started.

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