New Cookbook: The Complete Jerky Book

Careful Measuring and Timing Give the Best Results!

Monte Burch has written a 154 page tome on making jerky in your kitchen.

The title is:  The Complete Jerky Book:  How to Dry, Cure and Preserve Everything from Venison to Turkey. *

I picked this book up in the library — on the “new book” shelves.

What I Didn’t Like About the Book

The Complete … is literally a book full of advertisement for Bass Pro Shops … and other products (particularly expensive ones).

I’m concerned that this is a coming style in published books:  Mr. Burch mentions (seemingly) ALL the brands he uses.  That includes the cutlery he uses to cut the meat, the jerky kit, various jerky seasonings, a jerky cutting board, the huge smoker ….

The blurb about the author states he is a free-lance author, however, I wonder if he got a commission or was given free products to promote certain brands.  There’s no disclosure statement.

Frankly, it tainted the value of the book — for me.

Another problem:  Too many pictures of the same thing.

Fortunately, I’ve been cooking for 40+ years.  Newbies who don’t know their way around the kitchen might be frustrated.

What I Liked About the Book

Mr. Burch offered different ways of dehydrating the meat, from using the outdoors to a fancy electric smoker!

He also offered instruction in the finer points of ‘pimmican’ – a Native American food of shredded jerky, rendered fat, herbs,veggies and fruit.  It keeps indefinitely and the US Air Corps jet bombers consider this “survival rations.”

Mr. Burch had some good points.  On page 65, referring to raw meat, he states, “Cut away any fat, as fat not only doesn’t dry properly, but it adds a gamey flavor to the meat.”

Other Things to Like

  • “Food Safety” includes the “no-no’s” of jerky and the explanations are clear – unless you are a newbie in the kitchen.
  • There are quite a variety of recipes, marinades and meat rubs.
  • There are useful ground meat jerky instructions and recipes  – unless you are a newbie in the kitchen.

Mr. Burch offered recipes for:

  • Whisky Pepper Jerky,
  • Biltong (South African Beef Jerky)
  • Small Game & Waterfowl Jerky
  • Fish Jerky
  • Cured Salmon

If you are looking for new ways with wild game, this book offers some interesting ideas … if non-stop commercials don’t bother you.

See you soon!

~

* Skyhorse Publishing produced this book, 2010, $12.95

~*~

This blog is a companion to my website:  GreatGhilliesAndGraphics.com

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Published in: on November 1, 2010 at 12:10 am  Comments Off on New Cookbook: The Complete Jerky Book  
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How & Why Do I Use a Duck Carcass?

Originally, I wrote this just after the holidays, when folks were wondering how they could use left-over bird or fowl carcasses. This particular post still gets lots of hits, even in the heat of summer.

While thinking about this, I remembered another way to cook — with even more benefit to diners!   I added it to the end of this article!  

Cooking a Poultry Carcass

For Chicken, Hen, Duck, Goose, Turkey - Domestic or Wild!

 

 

~*~

 

What’s So Great About a Fowl Carcass?

There are three basic reasons I would boil a poultry carcass:

1) The comparison between a quart of  chicken/fowl stock versus a quart of water and bouillon versus purchased chicken/fowl stock is non-existent. They aren’t even in the same zip code! Stock that has been simmered has so much more flavor and nutrients!

2) In these tough economic times, it doesn’t make sense to toss the carcass without deriving its goodness for your table.

3) Scientists have proved that the “old wive’s tale” of giving chicken soup to an invalid is NOT an old wive’s tale.

There is scientific proof that the nutrients leached from the carcass during cooking are needed by the body to help it recover – from whatever ails them! The nutrients derived in this way are easier for the elderly to assimilate into their bodies.

All This Sounds Like a Lot of Trouble

Put the fowl carcass into a slow cooker (you may need to snap the bones, to fit it into the cooker), add 3 or 4 cups water, add some onion, 1 tsp. sea salt, garlic (Got celery and carrots? Add them), and turn it on (low or high)  as you go to bed.

How much trouble is that? In the morning, take the liner out of the cooker, let it cool and put it into the refrigerator (with the lid on) just before you leave.

In the evening, you can skim off the fat (or not, your choice) and pour the juice (strain out the veggies and carcass – discard them) into containers and freeze. If there are tidbits of the meat left from the bones, I add it to the broth.

Now What?

Soup, stew, gravy — whatever you make from this stock will be 100% more valuable to your body than the purchased, the bullion or the plain water.

I can think of dozens of uses for this stock. Save it for colds season and make soup. Use it as a base for black bean soup (or any other dried beans/legumes).

Use it as the base for a chicken stew (toss into a slow cooker:  onions, carrots, potatoes, garlic, celery, leftover chicken, whatever you have). Let it cook for 6 to 8 hours, adjust seasonings, enjoy!

Finally

Our forefathers and fore mothers never wasted anything. Creating their own fish or chicken or beef stock was one of the ways they stayed healthy.

BTW, I always add a teaspoon of sea salt to any stock I’m creating from a carcass. Salt helps leach more nutrients out of the bones.

Do I use quail or doves for this? No, they are too small.

~*~   ~*~   ~*~

Cooking a Carcass #2

Not everyone has a slow cooker/crock pot. If you have a large cast iron pot (with lid), such as a “dutch oven,” this is a great way to use it.

Use the same recipe as above, except cover the carcass with water.  Bring to a boil and allow to simmer for 1 or 2 hours.  Then use the broth as indicated above.

During cooking, liquids slowly leach iron from the cast iron into the broth!   This is a great way to add iron to the diet.  In fact, acidic foods leach iron faster (think: tomatoes, vinegar, etc.).

Iron is critical to the manufacture of red blood cells. Up to 30% of Americans do not get enough iron.  This is a safe, cheap way to add to your family’s health!

~

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My Wild Game Recipe Collection – Thus Far

 

Here's The Whole Shebang!

Here's The Whole Enchilada!

 

These recipes have been spread out over so many months, you may  have missed some.

  • Just Ducky – Wild Duck – Chesapeake Barbecued                                          Duck and Roasted Wild Duck
  • 2 Ways with Venison – Pecan-Crusted Venison, Tex-                                    Mex Venison
  • Deer Chili in a Slow Cooker “Brazos River Bottom                                     Killed-on-the-Road Texas Chili” and LBJ’s River Chili

~

This blog is a companion to my website:  GreatGhilliesAndGraphics.com

What Can I do with a Duck Carcass After Cleaning?**

 

Boil That Bird!

Boil That Bird!

 

** I’ve updated this article recently. It was posted: How & Why Do I Use a Duck Carcass?

This question keeps coming up – people insert these words into a search engine and they get my site.  I’ve never really answered this question directly and now would be a good time to do so.

The answer is going to be the same whether you have a chicken, hen, duck, goose, turkey or other “largish” fowl – domestic or wild.

~~~

What’s So Great About a Fowl Carcass?

There are three basic reasons I would boil a poultry carcass:

1) The comparison between a quart of  chicken/fowl stock versus a quart of water and bouillon versus purchased chicken/fowl stock is non-existent.

They aren’t even in the same zip code! Stock that has been simmered has so much more flavor!

2) In these tough economic times, it doesn’t make sense to toss the carcass without deriving its goodness for your table.

3) Scientists have proven that the “old wive’s tale” of giving chicken soup to an invalid is NOT an old wive’s tale. There is scientific proof that the nutrients leached from the carcass during cooking are needed by the body to help it recover – from whatever ails them!

The nutrients derived in this way are easier for the elderly to assimilate into their bodies.

All This Sounds Like a Lot of Trouble

Put the fowl carcass into a slow cooker, cover with water, add some onion, 1 tsp. sea salt, garlic (got celery and carrots? add them), and turn it on (low or high)  as you go to bed. How much trouble is that?

In the morning, take the liner out of the cooker, let it cool and put it into the refrigerator (with the lid on) just before you leave.

In the evening, you can skim off the fat (or not, your choice) and pour the juice (strain out the veggies and carcass – discard them) into containers and freeze. If there are tidbits of the meat left from the bones, I add it to the broth.

Now What?

Any soup, stew, gravy — whatever you make from this stock will be 100% more valuable to your body than the purchased, the bullion or the plain water.

I can think of dozens of uses for this stock. Save it for colds season and make soup. Use it as a base for black bean soup (or any other dried beans/legumes).

Use it as the base for a chicken stew (toss into a slow cooker:  onions, carrots, potatoes, garlic, celery, leftover chicken, whatever you have). Let it cook for 6 to 8 hours, adjust seasonings, enjoy!

Finally

Our forefathers and fore mothers never wasted anything. Creating their own fish or chicken or beef stock is one of the ways they stayed healthy.

BTW, I always add a teaspoon of sea salt to any stock I’m creating from a carcass. Salt helps leach more nutrients out of the bones.

Do I use quail or doves for this? No, they are too small.

Hopes this helps someone!

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Recipe: Tex-Mex Duckling

 

Tex-Mex Duck Recipe!

Tex-Mex Duck Recipe!

 

Fewer Recipes in Newspapers

Perhaps it has something to do with the change in newspapers. Thirty years ago, Wednesday’s food sections were brimming with great recipes.

Now, that same section is smaller and tells us about new products arriving on the grocery shelves.

Duck On the Table

Many folks are surprised to hear how nutritious duckling is. It is low in saturated fatty acids and  it is a complete protein.  Duck supplies some iron and 1/2 of our daily requirement for niacin.

If your freezer doesn’t hold a brace of duck, frozen ducking is available year round in most grocery stores. Just look in the frozen meat case, near the turkeys.

Duck With Zip

This one is a favorite. It’s easy and there are countless variations. Today, I’ll share Jalapeno Jelly that is the accompaniment to this duck dish. If you are not into spicy, you could substitute orange marmalade, plum, apricot preserves, etc.

Number of servings is hard to guesstimate; the size of the ducks and portion size are determining factors.

TEX-MEX DUCKLING

2 frozen duckings, defrosted

1/3 cup Jalapeno Jelly (recipe follows)

2 Tbsp. water

1 1/2 cups rice

2 Tbsp. EACH: butter AND oil

1/2 cup chopped onion

1/2 cup chopped celery

1/2 cup chopped pecans

1 qt, duck or chicken broth

1/2 tsp. salt

1/8  tsp. pepper

Remove giblets and neck from duck cavity. Remove excess fat and discard. Cook giblets and neck in 6 cups lightly salted water for 45 minutes. Reserve broth for rice dressing.

Place duckling(s), breast side up, on a rack in a roasting pan. Roast in a 350 degree oven 45 minutes per pound or until drumstick meat is tender.

Heat Jalapeno Jelly with 2 Tbsp. water, stirring constantly until jelly melts. Baste ducks with jelly mixture last half hour of baking time.

Saute rice in butter and oil until golden, stirring frequently. Add onion, celery and pecans; cook 3 to 4 minutes.  Add water, if necessary to broth to make 4 cups of liquid. Bring broth to a boil; combine with rice, vegetables, nuts, salt and pepper. Turn into a 2 qt. casserole, cover and bake in a 375 degree oven 40 minutes.

Rice mixture may also be used as a stuffing for ducks. Add an extra half hour to roasting time if the duck is stuffed.

Jalapeno Jelly

1/4 cup minced green pepper

2 Tbsp. minced, seeded jalapeno peppers

1 1/2 cup sugar

1/3 cup white vinegar

1 (3 oz.) package liquid pectin

Combine minces peppers, sugar and vinegar in a saucepan; simmer for 5 minutes. Remove from heat & add liquid pectin. Cool. Makes 1 2/3 cups. Serve as an accompaniment with the roast duckling.

~

This blog is a companion to my website:  GreatGhilliesAndGraphics.com

Recipe: Cooking Up a Wild Game Marinade & a Little Humor

 

Cooking Up a Storm!

Cooking Up a Storm!

 

This Marinade is from

Houston Home/Garden, November 1978

It was submitted by Virginia Elverson and she states it is good for venison, duck, goose, fresh pork or lamb roast.

Marinade

1 medium onion, sliced

2 carrots, roughly chopped

1/4 cup parsley, roughly chopped

10 – 12 peppercorns, crushed

8 juniper berries, crushed*

1 branch fresh thyme or 1/4 tsp. dried thyme**

1bay leaf

1 cup wine (can substitute 1/2 c. vinegar & 1/2 c water)

1 c oil (I prefer olive, but you can use corn, peanut, vegetable)

* If you don’t have juniper berries, substitute 1/4 cup gin for 1/4 cup of the wine

** I think the 1/4 tsp of thyme is skimpy and make it 1/2 tsp.

The game can be marinated from 12 hours to several days. For a stronger herb flavor, heat all the ingredients of the marinade, except the oil, just to the boiling point; then cool slightly and add the oil.

Elverson marinates a leg of venison for 3 days in the refrigerator.

~

And Now, A Little Humor ……

 

I borrowed these jokes from a great site: http://miteshasher.blogspot.com/2008/09/really-funny-jokes-hunting.html

What are Friends For?

Two men went bear hunting. While one stayed in the cabin, the other went out looking for a bear. He soon found a huge bear, shot at it but only wounded it.

When the enraged bear charged toward him, he dropped his rifle and started running for the cabin as fast as he could. He ran pretty fast but the bear was just a little faster and gained on him with every step.

Just as he reached the open cabin door, he tripped and fell flat.

Too close behind to stop, the bear tripped over him and went rolling into the cabin.

The man jumped up, closed the cabin door and yelled to his friend inside, “You skin this one while I go and get another!”

~

Beer

She told me we couldn’t afford beer anymore and I’d have to quit.
Then one fine day I caught her spending $65 on makeup.
And I asked how come I had to give up stuff and she didn’t.
She said she needed the makeup to look pretty for me.
I told her that was what the beer was for. I don’t think she’s coming back.

~

Mitesh has a very engaging site; Check it out!

~

This blog is a companion to my website:  GreatGhilliesAndGraphics.com

 

Recipes: Just Ducky with Wild Duck

 

amwigeon

Our American Heritage

 

As promised, this is a recipe for barbecued duck, copied years ago from American Rifleman (October 1978)

Chesapeake Barbecued Duck

Split whole ducks in halves; flatten with side of cleaver.

Place on rack in flat bake pan and bake @ 375 degrees for 1 hour. Baste every 10 minutes with BBQ Sauce (recipe is next). Turn and cook other side for 1 hour. Continue basting.

BBQ Sauce (for Wild Duck)

1/2 pound of butter                              ground pepper, to taste

1/2 cup catsup                                     1tsp. salt

1 Tbsp. sugar – brown                          1 clove pressed garlic

1 and 1/2 Tbsp. lemon juice                 1 small onion – chopped

1 Tbsp Worcestershire Sauce                 1/2 tsp. Tabasco Sauce

Mix ingredients and bring to a gentle boil. Simmer sauce, covered, for 5 minutes. Makes enough sauce for 4 duck halves.

~~~

Roast Wild Duck *

* Taken from The Houston Chronicle, Food Section, late1970’s or 1980

1 (3 to 5 pound) wild duck

salt and pepper

1 small onion, sliced

1 medium apple, sliced

Wine or orange juice

Season duck inside and out with salt and pepper. Put onion and apple into cavity of duck. Place on rack of roasting pan. Do not cover. (If it is an old bird, cover for the last half of the cooking time.)

Do not add water. Cook at 325 degrees for 2 – 3 hours, or until tender. Baste occasionally with wine or orange juice. Remove apple and onion before serving. Serves 6.

~~~

This Recipe is part of a series:

So far, there have been 6 recipe postings

 

  • Just Ducky – Wild Duck – Chesapeake Barbecued                                          Duck and Roasted Wild Duck

~~~

 

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~~~

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Recipe: Turning Wild Birds into Fine Dining

 

Wild Birds are Fine Dining, at its Best!

 

The time you spend marinating wild birds will be worth the effort when you get to the dinner table.  Fish-eating ducks call for a marinade of vinegar, wine or buttermilk. Older duck or goose will be more flavorful after a bath in (1/2 tsp. salt and 1 Tbsp. vinegar per quart of) cold water.  Leave the ducks in this marinade 4 – 12 hours in the refrigerator – to improve tenderness and flavor.

General Wild Duck Info

Duck meat is best cooked rare.  The meat is dark, dense and dry. That’s why you see so many recipes calling for cooking duck in a covered roaster with several slices of bacon spread over the duck body. Another option is to use a slow cooker with your duck(s). All of these strategies help retain moisture in an otherwise dry meat. Lots of folks are surprised to find that wild duck can be barbecued. However, the most common way to cook wild ducks is to dredge them through flour and spices, fry the outside and smother in gravy and bake for 3 or 4 hours.

Wild Goose

The great thing about wild goose is that there is so little waste with this bird. Young bird is absolutely delicious while older birds tend to be tough and poor prospects for tenderizing with moist heat. Therefore, next time you go hunting, make sure you get a young one!   😉  You know you have an old goose when you see: pinfeathers, very large wing spurs and overall -rather coarse feathers.**

Stuff the goose with your choice: sliced tart apples OR breaded stuffing with tart apples and onions. I’ll end this posting with one of my favorite duck recipes. Next time I add recipes, I’ll include: Chesapeake Barbecued Duck and Roasted Wild Duck.   But today’s recipe is:

~~~

Holly Gravy Duck

1 cup quality oil

1 cup flour

4 cups water

Make a dark roux with the oil and flour (this requires time and nearly constant stirring). The roux – when ready – is the color of an old penny. Take the roux off heat, let cool for a few minutes (5 – 10) {this is to lower the temperature of the pot so you aren’t scalded when you add the water}, put back on stove and add water and seasonings:

2 Tbsp. celery seed                           dash of pepper

1 Tbsp. salt per duck                        1 Tbsp. chili powder per duck

1 clove garlic per duck

Stir until spices are dispersed and gravy starts to thicken. Pour this gravy over the ducks in the roaster, cover and cook @ 350 degrees for 3 or 4 hours.

~~~

**There’s more info on pin feathers and wing spurs in this article:  “What do Pin Feathers on a Duck Look Like?”

~~~

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Turn Wild Birds into Gourmet Fare (2 of 2)

Here’s another great recipe for doves.

Dove and Sausage Gumbo

15 dove breasts

1 (10.5 oz) can consomme

1 beef-flavored bouillon cube

1/2 cup vegetable oil (I use olive oil)

1/2 cup all-purpose flour

1 and 1/2 cups finely chopped onion

2 stalks celery, finely chopped

2 Tbs. Worcestershire Sauce

2 cloves garlic, minced

1 to 2 bay leaves

1/2 tsp. dried whole basil

1/4 tsp. poultry seasoning

1/4 tsp. freshly ground pepper

1/8 tsp. ground red pepper

1/8 tsp. ground allspice

1/8 tsp. ground cloves

3/4 pound smoked sausage, cut into 1/4″ slices

1/4 cup dry red wine

1/8 tsp. hot sauce

Hot cooked rice

Place dove breasts in Dutch oven and cover with water; boil  about 10 minutes. Cool and remove meat from bones.  Reserve cooking liquid in Dutch oven, adding water if necessary to make 2 and 1/4 cups liquid. Set meat aside.

Add consomme and bouillon cube to Dutch oven. Cook until bouillon cube is dissolved.

Brown dove in hot oil in a large skillet; drain well.  Pour off all but 1/4 cup oil. Add flour to reserved oil, cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, until roux is the color of a  copper penny (about 10 to 15 minutes).

Gradually add about 1 and 1/2 cups of consomme mixture to roux; cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, until thickened and bubbly. Stir in onion and celery and cook about 5 minutes or until vegetables are tender. Add roux mixture to remaining consomme mixture and stir well. Stir in next 9 ingredients (Worcestershire to cloves).

Brown sausage and drain well. Stir sausage and dove into roux mixture, simmer  1 and 1/2 hours, stirring occasionally. Add wine & hot sauce, stir well.

Remove bay leaves, adjust seasonings and serve gumbo over rice. Yield: about 1 and 3/4 quarts (about 1/2 gallon). Freezes well, gumbo is better tasting the second day than the first!

~

Sherry Duck

(This is very flexible – yet the results are wonderful.  As you can see, this is a very casual recipe!   Folks with OCD {Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder} will have a hard time deciding how much of each ingredient to use!)

butter OR Crisco

pepper & seasoned salt

2 or 3 strips of bacon (don’t use turkey bacon – it lacks the fat necessary to moisturize the meat)

Chopped: apple, onion  & celery

Mix chopped items, sprinkle with a bit of seasoned salt and add to the cavity of the duck(s).  Spread butter or crisco, salt and pepper on the top of duck(s); place in covered roaster.

Pour water until there’s about 1/4 inch of water in the bottom of the roaster (around the ducks) and put 2 – 3 strips of bacon across the ducks. Cook covered at 400 degrees for 2 and 1/2 to 3 hours — check on water occasionally (don’t let the pan/roaster dry out).

Let ducks sit for ~ 10 minutes before slicing. Serve with this sauce poured over slices.

Sherry Duck Sauce

1 stick butter

3 Tbls. currant jelly

3 caps of Sherry wine

1 Tbls. spicy mustard

Mix together, heat and serve over ducks, as desired.

~

This blog is a companion to my website:  GreatGhilliesAndGraphics.com

 

Turn Wild Birds into Gourmet Fare (1 of 2)

As a successful bird hunter, you may be looking for recipes for your doves and teal. My dear husband  (MDH) has been a duck hunter for years and we’ve tried many ways to bring out the delicious best of the game Richard has brought home. Here are some of our favorites!

We’ve never experienced the “gamey” flavor folks complain of because MDH field dresses, plucks, cools and ages birds carefully. Because the focus of this article is cooking, I’ll leave the plucking, etc., directions for another day.

Doves Have Dark Meat

The most tender of the doves are the young ones.  These can be fried; but older dove taste better with other types of cooking.

Fried Doves

Two doves make a serving. Because the doves are slowly cooked in liquid, this is a great recipe for older doves or doves of an uncertain age.

Fry like chicken. Dredge the doves through a combination of salt, pepper and flour. Fry in a heavy pan; I use olive oil, while others swear by corn oil.

Brown, remove and drain on paper towels. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Add to a pan (with a cover):

1 chopped onion

some parsley (fresh or dried), according to personal taste

2 – 3 whole garlic cloves (optional)

2 Tbsp. flour

2 Tbsp. butter

1/2 to 1 teasp. salt

2 cups water

2 cups wine (or broth, as preferred)

Stir the flour into the liquids until smooth, add doves, cover and cook for one hour. Very delicious with brown and wild rice!

Smothered Doves

This recipe is similar to the one above.  Because the doves are slowly cooked in liquid, this is a great recipe for older doves or doves of an uncertain age. This recipe comes from an ancient Houston Chronicle food section.

6 or 8 doves

3 Tbsp. flour

1/2 teasp. salt

1/4 teasp. pepper

1/2 cup olive oil

1 or 2 cloves of garlic

1 cup Burgundy or Claret of other red wine

Dust the doves with flour seasoned with salt and pepper. In a heavy skillet, lightly brown doves in heated oil with garlic. When browned, remove garlic and discard. Add wine and enough water to barely cover birds. Simmer about 1 and 1/2 hours or until tender. Thicken pan juices with a little of the remaining seasoned flour. Serve with a brown/wild rice combination. Serves 3.

~~~

This blog is a companion to my website:  GreatGhilliesAndGraphics.com