Network Hosts Reveal Their Top Wild Game Recipes for the Summer Season
Need fresh cooking ideas for your summer picnic or outdoor bash? Sportsman Channel, the leader in outdoor TV for the American Sportsman, asked our top hosts and experts for their secrets behind the grill to share with our viewers so your summer soirée is as tasty as it can be. For many of our hosts, the real enjoyment after a hunt is prepping the food to share with loved ones later. You certainly could label some of our hosts as “foodies” in their own right with executive chefs and award-winning culinary skills displayed on TV. Please scroll below for a sampling of wild game recipes courtesy of Sportsman Channel hosts and visit http://www.thesportsmanchannel.com/recipes/ for more including pictures, backstories and additional insights on prepping and cooking your next meal.
- Tasty Smoked Trout Fillets: MeatEater – Host, Steven Rinella: For 6 trout fillets (approximately 4 oz. apiece), combine the following ingredients and stir to dissolve: 1 quart water, ½ cup salt, ¾ cup honey, ¾ cup dark rum, ¼ cup lemon juice. Submerge your fresh fillets, skin side down, in brine for about an hour. (Not more than two hours.) Remove and rinse under cold water, then pat dry with paper towels and place on a wire rack to continue drying until they feel tacky to the touch. Smoke the fillets, skin side down, over apple or cherry wood until the flesh flakes along clean lines when pressed. (Approximately 160 degrees.) Serve warm or chilled. (Note: another option is to grill the brined fillets and serve warm off the grill as an entrée.)
- Rut Hut Rolls: Meet the McMillans – Host, Tom McMillan: We grill Rut Hut Rolls from animals that we have harvested including whitetail, elk, and even red stag. We have served these to many hunting clients that come through our ranch and they are always a big hit! Ingredients: We use either elk back strap, pounded flat or deer minute steaks or stag cutlets that are pounded flat. Marinate one pound of any of the meat listed above in Italian dressing for at least 3-4 hours or overnight. Take a piece of meat and place a slice of cream cheese and desired amount of onions and jalapeños the length of one end of the piece of meat. Roll up and wrap with a piece of thin bacon. Secure with toothpicks. Season the roll with any wild game seasoning of your choice. Be sure to cook slow and thoroughly, due to the thickness of the rolls. Best results in flavor are when grilled over a campfire… (but most things usually taste better when cooked over a campfire).
- Hail Mary Elk Stir-Fry: Riggo on the Range – Host, John Riggins: Ingredients: 3 carrots, thinly sliced, 1 bunch broccoli, cut into florets, 3 celery stalks, chopped 1/2″ pieces; 2 sweet bell peppers, chopped; 8 scallions, cut 4″ long, diced; 4 cloves diced garlic; 8 oz. sugar snap peas; 8-10 shiitake mushrooms, stemmed & sliced into strips; 1-1.5 lb. elk ‘backstrap’, cut lengthwise; 2 tbsp. sesame seed oil and 1 tbsp. sesame chili oil. Cook meat first in pan until well done, then stir fry all ingredients together until veggies are tender. Serve with long-grain brown rice, kosher salt (to taste) and soy sauce (to taste).
- Montana Burgers:Big Deer with Mike Hanback – Host, Mike Hanback: My addiction to these burgers comes straight from deer camp some years ago when I was bowhunting on the Milk River in Montana with Luke Strommen, a charter member of the Big Deer Hunt Team. Ingredients: 2 packs venison burger (ground elk, moose or beef works great too), Johnny’s Jamaica Me Crazy seasoned sea salt, Bone Sucking Sauce (or your favorite BBQ sauce), pepper, hamburger rolls (optional) and cheese (optional). Pre-heat gas grill or burn charcoal to medium-high (10 minutes for gas; let coals turn good and gray). Form meat into 6 good-sized patties. Spray grate with non-stick grilling oil. Add patties and brush liberally with Bone Sucking’ Sauce. Sprinkle patties liberally with Jamaica Me Crazy. Pepper to taste. Close lid and grill 4-5 minutes.
- Bacon Wrapped Venison Rolls:Skull Bound TV – Host, Jana Waller: This is my favorite venison recipe. It works great with antelope or elk meat! It’s fairly easy to prepare and is always a big hit with friends and family. It’s the perfect meal for the grill and goes great with your traditional summer side dishes like fresh salad, grilled vegetables, beans or fruit salad. The essentials for this meal are as follows: 1 package of bacon, 1lb venison or 4 steaks/backstraps, 8 oz. cream cheese, 1 jalapeno or green pepper, 1 cup balsamic dressing, 1 cup worcestershire sauce and toothpicks. Take thawed venison steaks or backstraps and cut into thin strips approximately 3-4 inches long and soak in a mixture of 50 percent balsamic dressing and 50 percent Worcestershire sauce until coated. Let meat soak for a minimum of 1 hour. Cut up jalapeno or green pepper into small nickel-sized pieces. Cut bacon into half inch strips. Place individual bacon strips onto cutting board. Place venison on bacon and add a dollop of cream cheese and a small piece of pepper. Roll tightly into a ball and place a toothpick through the middle to hold together. *The secret is to pierce the jalapeno or pepper with the toothpick to help hold the roll together. Place rolls onto pre-heated grill for approximately 15 minutes, turning every few minutes to cook meat thoroughly. Keep the heat down to a low-medium heat to avoid over cooking.
- Wild Game Fajitas:Easton Bowhunting – Michelle Eichler: This recipe works well with any wild game meat. Ingredients: 4 tbsp. olive oil; 1 lb. wild game meat flank or skirt steak cut is best but any will work; 1 large onion sliced in half inch wide slices; 3 sweet peppers (I prefer to use 1 green, 1 yellow and 1 red also sliced lengthwise into 1/2 inch strips) and Season Salt (I prefer Jane’s Crazy Mixed Up Salt). For the Marinade: Juice of two limes or lemons, 4 tbsps. Olive Oil, 4 Cloves of Garlic finely chopped 1 teaspoon ground cumin, 1/2 Jalapeno pepper finely chopped with ribs and seeds removed and 1/3 cup fresh chopped cilantro. Mix all the marinade ingredients in glass container. Place meat in plastic bag or glass casserole dish. Pour Marinade over meat and let marinate for a minimum of 2 hours or overnight. After meat has marinated, cook either on an outdoor grill or put 2 tbsps. of oil in a skillet on high heat and fry steak on each side to desired doneness. Medium rare is preferred in our house and best for wild game which is low in fat. The outside of the steak should be seared brown. Set in a foil tent for 5 minutes to rest. Add remaining two tbsps. of olive oil into pan and quickly cook the onions and peppers until seared but still crisp. Season with season salt to taste.
- Venison Skewers w/Roasted Red Peppers Sauce:Dead Meat – Host, Scott Leysath: Before cooking any of the hindquarter muscles, make sure that all silverskin and gristle is removed. Slice the trimmed meat into thin slices across the “grain” of the meat before skewering. If you see the grain running the length of the sliced meat, you’ve sliced it incorrectly and the cooked venison will be much tougher. Ingredients for 6 servings: 2 1/2 pounds trimmed venison from backstrap, tenderloin or hindquarter; 1/3 cup olive oil; 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar; 1 tbsp. freshly ground pepper; 1 tsp. kosher salt; 2 tbsp. whole grain mustard; 3 tbsp. fresh rosemary leaves, minced; 4 cloves fresh garlic, minced; and skewers soaked in water for 30 minutes (although they’ll still burn). Roasted Red Pepper Sauce: 1 cup roasted red bell pepper (store-bought is OK); 1 tsp. Tabasco; 1 cup sour cream and pinch of salt. To begin, slice meat across the grain into 1/4-inch thick strips. In a medium bowl, prepare marinade by whisking together olive oil with remaining ingredients. Place meat in marinade and toss well to coat. Refrigerate for 2 to 6 hours, turning meat 3 or 4 times while refrigerated. When you are ready to cook, combine the Red Pepper Sauce ingredients and blend well. Remove meat from marinade and place on skewers. Place skewers on a well-lubricated white-hot grill for 2 minutes per side or until cooked to desired doneness. Serve with Red Pepper Sauce.
- Elk Chili: Fresh Tracks with Randy Newberg – Host, Randy Newberg: Ingredients: 3 Tbsp. Vegetable Oil, 3 1/2 Lbs. Elk Stew Meat (Cut into 1/2″ Cubes), 3 Cloves Garlic (Minced or Garlic-Pressed), 1/4 – 1/2 tsp. crushed, dry Red Peppers (Optional),3 tsp. Chili Powder (or more, to taste), 3/4 tsp. Ground Cumin, 3 Tbsp. Masa (or Flour), 1 Tbsp. Oregano (dry leaf spice), 2 tsp. Salt,1/2 tsp. Black Pepper, 1 can (13 oz.) Beef Broth, 1 can (8 oz.) Tomato Sauce, 1/8 – 1/4 cup Green Chili Salsa (1/4 cup is spicy), 3-4 cups canned Pinto Beans (2 ea. 16 oz. Cans with Liquid Drained). Add oil to cubed elk, and mix to coat all pieces. Heat a Dutch oven pan, add oiled elk cubes and stir over medium heat until elk loses pink color, but do not brown too much. Stir in garlic and crushed red peppers. Stir in remaining ingredients and let come to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for up to an hour to allow flavors to “marry.” When serving, add optional garnishes such as cheese and sour cream.
- Dove Sticks: Gun It with Benny Spies – Host, Benny Spies: Clean dove breasts and separate from bone. First is to soak in lemon lime soda for 8-12 hours and then marinate in sauce of choice for 12-16 hours. When ready to cook, wrap 2-3 marinated breasts in 1/2 bacon strip, and cut up peppers and mushrooms to fit kabob stick. Put bacon-wrapped dove breasts, peppers and mushrooms on kabob sticks and cook until medium rare.
- Wild Game Marinade: Brad Ferris’ Game Plan – Host, Brad Ferris: This is my family’s marinade that can be enjoyed on any red meat and wild Turkey. Ingredients: 1 Cup Wesson Oil, 1 Cup Soy Sauce, 1/3 Cup Red Wine Vinegar, 3 tbsp. minced onion, 1 tbsp. garlic powder, and 3 tbsp. Major Grey’s chopped Mango Chutney. Let meat marinate for 6 to 8 hrs. (If using wild turkey, it only needs 2 – 3 hrs.) I always cook on the grill and never cook any red meat more than medium…preferably medium rare. The wild turkey I cube and grill as well.
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