We held an Olympics themed party last weekend and decided to make a whole lot of sushi rolls for it! A couple of weeks ago I had baked, deboned, and froze a fresh Missouri River trout, so we had plenty of fish to work with.
A couple of years ago, some friends showed us that making your own rolls was incredibly easy, fun, cheap, and pretty dang tasty! Fresh sushi-ready fish is a bit pricey, though, so we typically just make veggie rolls or use crab, smoked or leftover salmon, and once even fried chicken! With trout bits ready to go, we decided to give it a try.
We were enjoying sunny days and 40 degree temperatures, but alas, it has cooled down. No reason to complain as my parents in South Dakota are experiencing their 37th (or something close to that….) blizzard of the 2013-2014 winter season! Plus, Jethro doesn’t get coated with mud when everything freezes..
With the cooler temperatures, it was time to break out a new stew recipe. Our freezer was getting full as I spent an afternoon awhile back cooking large batches of dry beans and freezing them in serving-size baggies (Much cheaper than the cans and they taste fresher, too!). So to make some room, I figured we could use some of the chickpeas. And chickpeas instantly reminded me of a Moroccan-inspired stew.
Ground deer meat that’s been marinating soaking up flavors of beer, lime, and spices, plus onions, garlic, and several varieties of peppers all rolled in a tortilla and then smothered (not drizzled) in enchilada sauce and cheese (plus a cold beer) equals one filling, satisfying cold-weather meal.
I’ve been meaning to make enchiladas for awhile now, but they tend to be a bit time-consuming. And lately, our schedules have not allowed too much extra time for complicated meals.
But once I started making these and decided to cut out a few steps (the dipping of tortillas into sauce or the frying of tortillas) to make them both easier, less messy, and healthier, I realized they really weren’t too time-consuming…a nice surprise!
I was hesitant make to meatballs out of our ground elk (or antelope or deer) because we don’t add any fat to the meat we grind. This keeps the meat lean and true to its own flavor, but it also makes it less cohesive when forming patties. Fortunately, we found that forming meatballs didn’t pose any problems!
Growing up in South Dakota, Swedish-style meatballs were about the only type of meatballs we ever ate. And during the cold (sometimes absolutely frigid), dark, windy winters, we ate plenty of them, smothered in homemade gravy and poured over mashed potatoes. It warmed our bellies!
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!
As I’ve mentioned in my previous bear posts, we start with our breakfast spiced bear sausage and spice it up accordingly. For this recipe, I marinated for about 30 hours one pound of ground bear sausage with fennel, sage, thyme, rosemary, and a Chardonnay.
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!
I hope everybody had a nice Thanksgiving! We had a great time with Roy’s folks and our friend, Jill, along with a couple of doggies who laid by the table hoping some scraps would come their way…and they did.
The week leading up to Thanksgiving, Roy and I ate this antelope stew everysingleday. To state the obvious, we made A LOT of stew. It’s a good thing it was so tasty! Although, we will probably make a smaller batch next time or freeze half of it for an easy dinner in the future.
We have a great fondness for pizza in our household. Sometimes we get in pizza ruts, especially when I make a big batch of dough. We’ll eat a pizza a night until we’re out of dough. It’s so simple and quick to make. And with Roy, the big test for a meal receiving an “A” grade is if it is filling. Pizza is always filling, even when it is vegetarian.
But Roy still insists (most of the time) that it needs meat. I think the best wild game meats for a pizza are either grouse or trout. However, grouse are sometimes difficult to find, and we haven’t been fishing since this summer! Some may like a ground meat topping, as in a taco pizza, or cheeseburger pizza, but neither one of us care too much for that.