Welcome back, readers. And Happy New Year!!

I was recently given a good bit of deer meat by the father of a girl I tutor. Now, I have eaten deer meat before and know that I like it. But I have never actually cooked with deer meat before. And I had no idea what to do with it.

So, luckily it’s 2012 (it was 2012 when I did this), and I just jumped on google and typed in recipes for deer meat (also called venison). I was overwhelmed with the amazing number of options for this meat, many of which sounded quite good.

I normally like to reserve this blog for original ideas that I come up with and reviews, as you know. However, you might be like me and came into some venison which you have no idea what to do with. So I thought I would share my findings thus far with you. I hope you find this helpful and enjoy!

The first recipe I decided to try was a venison with blackberry wine sauce. I don’t usually follow recipes to the letter, and I encourage you to do the same. With this one, I accidentally added the beef broth to the jam and wine mixture before they had both been reduced. Again, this was accidental, but it still turned out OK. I also didn’t bother running anything through a mesh sieve (when you’re cooking after a 9 hour day at work and after spending an hour at the grocery store, you can afford to make a few mistakes and take a few shortcuts). And I didn’t use the butter. Again, turned out just fine.

As for the steaks, I covered the bottom of the pan with more red wine and some shredded carrots. I cooked the steaks with the wine, carrots, and more garlic. Almost at the very end, I dumped in the fresh blackberries to warm those up with the meat.

I served this with a baked potato and roasted Brussels spouts.

blackberry vensionAs you can see, I cooked the Brussels sprouts with some carrots also (full disclosure, I just wanted to use up those carrots). WOW, was this meal good.

The second way I tried cooking this venison was in the crockpot. Once again, I didn’t follow this to the letter. I used venison steaks instead of the roast (because that’s what I had). I used two medium-sized apples, and I threw in a bag of frozen onions and peppers in instead of using just the onions. Instead of the bullion/water mix, I just used beef broth at the start of the cooking process. Throw everything in the crockpot on low before work, and enjoy this awesome meal when you get home. I even got my mother-in-law to try venison for the first time with this recipe.  Everyone loved it. It tasted pretty much like a beef roast. The venison was so tender it practically fell apart on the fork. I will say, I thought it was a bit dry (but no one else thought this was the case).

I served this with my original lemon-dill potatoes (look for this recipe in the future), steamed cauliflower, and of course a big salad

crockpot deer

Now, with this recipe: save ALL of the broth/juices from the crockpot, including the peppers and onions (the apples were discarded before serving). Use this with any leftover meat/potatoes/veggies. The next day, I threw all the leftovers in the crockpot. I added about two more cups of beef broth, a bag of frozen vegetable soup mix, and a can of diced tomatoes including all juices. The mix was fairly thick (more like a stew than a soup). Feel free to add any spices you like. I cooked this on low and served it over rice for dinner. It was quite good. Unfortunately I did not take a picture because we were in a hurry that night-sorry!

I hope this helps your exploration with this delicious meat. Feel free to share your favorite way to prepare this meat with me. I have plenty more in the freezer to play with!

Until next time. Bon appetit!