Archive for the 'Food' Category

Wild Game for the Holidays

Friday, October 6th, 2017
Wild Boar Chops

Wild Boar Chops


This is Passport to Texas

This time of year hunting seasons begin to overlap: quail….duck…deer…you get the picture.

As a result, hunters—and those of us who benefit from knowing hunters—end up with freezers full of game meat. There are worse problems to have.

With the holidays on the horizon, wouldn’t a dish featuring game be a nice addition to your feast? Heck, even the Great British Baking Show had their contestants bake festive game pies.

If you’re stumped when it comes to preparing wild proteins for the holiday table…perhaps a little hands-on cooking class can set you on the right course.

Texas Parks and Wildlife collaborates with Central Market Cooking Schools statewide to offer hands on wild game and fish cooking classes to the public. November’s class is all about dressing up game for the holidays.

Class participants will prepare: Grilled Quail with Red Chile Honey Glaze…Whiskey Spiced Duck with Swiss chard & celery root…and Venison Filet with Blueberry Pan Jus on Cheese Grits.

Tell me that doesn’t sound like a party waiting to happen. The next class is November 14, and takes place in Austin, San Antonio, Houston, Dallas, Fort Worth, Southlake, and Plano. All locations are currently accepting registrations.

Find more information at passporttotexas.org. That’s our show for today… Funding provided in part by Ram Trucks. Guts. Glory. Ram

For Texas Parks and Wildlife, I’m Cecilia Nasti.

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Find A Central Market Wild Game Class Near You

TPW Magazine — Texas Brigades

Tuesday, September 12th, 2017
Learning conservation with Texas Brigades.

Learning conservation with Texas Brigades.

This is Passport to Texas

Texas Brigades is a wildlife and natural resource focused leadership development program for youth, 13 to 17.

Texas Brigades has been around for 25 years. It started out as Bobwhite Brigade back in 1993, and then it just kind of morphed.

It’s morphed into is eight summer camps, each with a different conservation focus. Aubry Buzek [Byu-zik] wrote about the Brigades for the October issue of Texas Parks and Wildlife magazine.

What was really interesting is that these camps are not necessarily about learning about one particular species. At Bobwhite Brigade, they were learning a lot about quail—and they had biologists there teaching them about quail. But that wasn’t the overall goal of the program. It was about being comfortable with public speaking, comfortable talking with their peers. Debating.

These five-day intensive camps incorporate military marching and cadence, and introduce students to experts and activities that challenge and

I talked to a lot of parents after graduation and they were like, ‘Who is this kid?’ I saw it too. That confidence. A lot of parents said they didn’t expect their kid to know just so much. But, in addition to that knowledge, these kids are loud, and they’re marching, and they make a lot of friends. It really is a transformative camp.

Read Aubry Buzek’s story about the Texas Brigades in the October issue of Texas Parks and Wildlife magazine.

For Texas Parks and Wildlife…I’m Cecilia Nasti.

Buy Your License, Feed Hungry Texans

Friday, September 8th, 2017
Beautiful, yes. But also an important protein source for hungry Texans.

Beautiful, yes. But also an important protein source for hungry Texans.

This is Passport

Hunters for the Hungry, a program of Feeding Texas, welcomes legally harvested and tagged deer from hunters to help feed hungry Texans.

This is a wonderful program that helps us fight hunger.

Celia Cole, CEO of Feeding Texas says a bill passed during the 2015 Texas Legislative session, allows hunters and anglers to make voluntary cash donations to the program when buying a license.

The option on the license is you can (voluntarily) donate one, five, ten or twenty dollars. In addition to the donations we’ve received through the hunting license option, individuals have supported the program through a donation option on our website.

Last year hunters and anglers, donated 110-thousand dollars to Hunters for the Hungry.

So, for the first time this year, we had funds to help reimburse processors for their costs of participating in the program. And that funding stream is what’s going to allow us to greatly increase the pounds of venison that go through the program next year.

Even with limited promotion, hunters donated more than 55-thousand pounds of venison to the program.

Collectively, we serve 3.5 million Texans every year. About a million of those are kids. We’re looking to grow [Hunters for the hungry] in those areas where there are lots of opportunities.

Find details at feedingtexas.org; click on the “get involved” tab, and then Hunters for the Hungry.

That’s our show…For Texas Parks and Wildlife…I’m Cecilia Nasti.

Hunters and Anglers Help Feed Hungry Texans

Thursday, September 7th, 2017
This is one of the faces of hunger in Texas. Image from Feeding Texas Facebook page.

This is one of the faces of hunger in Texas. Image from Feeding Texas Facebook page.

This is Passport

Hunger is widespread in the US and in Texas.

Our food banks collectively provide food and other services to about 3.5 million Texans every year. They do that through a network of approximately 3,000 private charities. They manage to get food and other services out to hungry Texans in all 254 counties.

Celia Cole is CEO of Feeding Texas.

Feeding Texas is the state association that represents all of the food banks in Texas – there are 21. And we’re all part of a network called Feeding America.

Hunters for the Hungry is a program of Feeding Texas.

We work with hunters and meat processors to involve them in the program. Hunters donate excess venison they hunt, to the processor who then grinds it up and packages it and makes it available to our network for distribution to the hungry people we serve.

Last year, hunters donated about 55-thousand pounds of venison to the program.

We are really hopeful that we can greatly increase that amount. It’s a matter of getting the word out to hunters that this program is available, and then also recruiting enough processors that there are enough outlets for hunters to take their deer to.

Learn how to help hungry Texans when you buy your next hunting or fishing license. That’s tomorrow.

The Wildlife Restoration program supports our series.

That’s our show…For Texas Parks and Wildlife…I’m Cecilia Nasti.

Beyond Bacon: Dove Carnitas a la Killer Chefs

Tuesday, September 5th, 2017
Dove Carnitas a la Killer Chefs. Photo: Jesse Morris.

Dove Carnitas a la Killer Chefs. Photo: Jesse Morris.

This is Passport to Texas

With dove season underway in the north and central zones, bacon wrapped dove breasts will soon show up on the tables of hunters everywhere.

People don’t really like eating doves, they like eating bacon, if that’s the only way that they cook it.

Jesse Morris is a hunter and chef with Killer Chefs in Richardson, Texas. He says there are more inventive ways to enjoy dove—including carnitas.

Everybody’s go-to recipe—and there’s nothing wrong with it – is bacon wrapped dove. It’s nice to actually use all the bird. So, you can use the heart in the carnitas, and the legs, and the breast meat, and everything. Cooking that down low and slow; finishing it off, letting all the sugars come out in the product. It’s something good.

If you’re a new hunter and longtime foodie, you may be tempted to “go gourmet” when preparing dove or any game. Jesse recommends to start simply.

People get off on wanting to cover them in sauces or gravy, and things like that – when they’re really not tasting the bird, or whatever game that it is that they’re eating. When you’re first starting out cooking wild game, cook it simply: grill it; salt and pepper. See what the flavors that the actual game is, and then work with that.

We have Jesse Morris’ dove carnitas recipe at Passport to Texas dot com.

For Texas Parks and Wildlife…I’m Cecilia Nasti.

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Killer Chef’s Dove Carnitas Recipe
by Jesse Morris
One of my all time favorites and go to recipe is carnitas. They are flavorful and easy to cook. My version of the recipe is not totally traditional. I like to lighten it up and use things that I can find around me in the late August early September months. If you don’t like the idea of using real sugar cokes, then don’t use it. You may substitute piloncillo, an unrefined sugar, and water.

Ingredients
1 pound salt pork, large cubed
Pig skin or pig ears, you may use the skin from the salt pork
1 white onion, rough chopped
6 cloves garlic, peeled
1 pound block of lard
10 dove plucked and cleaned doves quartered and hearts (trust me)
1 bunch fresh thyme, whole
1 bunch fresh oregano, whole
2 sticks Mexican cinnamon
1 Meyer lemon (or small orange), peeled, rind and juice
3 Mexican real sugar cokes

Instructions
In a deep, heavy bottom pan or Dutch oven brown the salt pork.
Add onions and garlic to pan and sauté for a few minutes.
Then add lard and allow it to melt and begin to slightly fry ingredients in pan.
Next add dove and remainder of the ingredients and simmer for about an hour on medium/high heat until meat is tender and the cloudy look of the coke and lard turns semi clear.
Pick all the meat and some of the lemon peel out. Pull apart the meat to prep for serving.
Finish off on flat top or cast iron pan till caramelized.
I prefer to garnish with charred jalapeno, chimichuri and a slice of lime or Meyer lemon.