A couple of weeks ago, I shared how we make our wild game jerky. As I indicated, we had only successfully seasoned our jerky with pre-made seasoning kits. Over Christmas break, I decided to experiment some more with a homemade seasoning. I thawed out some ground deer meat and came up with a Southwest jerky recipe.
We found it to be every bit as tasty as the seasoning kits. My dad even thought it was better! But he may have been a bit biased….
Our Southwest mixture uses only dry seasonings (well, except for a splash of Worcestershire sauce). We personally haven’t had as much luck with the soy sauce and other liquid based recipes. Maybe we were just doing something wrong with them…more experimentation is needed!
We ground up most of our deer meat this year and have turned much of it into jerky. It’s a great and healthy snack food, and we love taking it on our road trips…Jethro (our dog) likes it, too, as he inevitably gets a few pieces (especially when we forget to pack dog food…)!
We used to make deer jerky in a dehydrator, but we found that it would dry the meat out too much, so Roy switched to making it in the oven.
The first step is to grind some deer meat.
So far we’ve only used seasoning kits…they are so easy to use, and most of them taste great. (We’re still experimenting with our recipes, so hopefully we’ll be able to post a successful one soon!) So add the seasoning to the ground meat. Our favorite has been the Hi Mountain Cracked Pepper and Garlic seasoning. Follow meat to spice ratio on seasoning packet. Don’t skimp on the seasonings even a little bit!
We are in the middle of hunting season here in Montana, and our freezer has been filled with a deer, antelope, and elk!
One thing I love about fall and winter is that it also equals hearty stew season! (At least here in Montana where we have cool and even frigid seasons!) The daylight hours are more precious and temperatures are below freezing, making it a perfect time to hunker down in the evenings, have a glass of wine, and make and enjoy some chili.
When I first told Roy that I was going to make us a sweet potato chili with some ground deer meat, I got the crinkled nose look from him. He was skeptical.