Archive for the 'Venison' Category

Food Week: Flavor Forward Game Cookery

Friday, November 24th, 2017
Solana Ranch near Salado, TX.  Photos for TPW Magazine story "Hunting with Chef Marcus"

Solana Ranch near Salado, TX. Photos for TPW Magazine story “Hunting with Chef Marcus”

This is Passport to Texas Food Week

To coax the best flavor from the deer hunters harvest this fall, proper care from field to plate, is a must. Just ask Marcus Paslay. He’s chef and owner of Clay Pigeon Food & Drink in Fort Worth.

Every step of the way—the way it’s handled—drastically affects flavor. You know, in the field, it’s something you want to get cleaned out as soon as you can, and get it cold as soon as you can. It keeps that flavor a little bit more clean.

A bit more clean, and a lot less gamey – but not without some gaminess.

It is an acquired taste. So, I think whoever’s eating it is going to have to have a sense of adventure to a certain extent. But there are ways to overcome it a little bit. I always like using brines. Soaking the meat in a sugar, citrus, salt bath overnight—or whatever it takes. That really helps out well with big game such as venison, or hog.

Brining is just one method Chef Paslay uses to impart flavor into game.

Another way I really love on venison is rubbing it down with coffee grounds. And the tannins in the coffee help break down the proteins and they also impart a pretty strong flavor themselves, which masks the gaminess of the meat.

Find a link to Chef Marcus Paslay’s recipe for coffee rubbed venison loin at

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

Food Week: Christopher Kimball on Wild Game

Tuesday, November 21st, 2017
Christopher Kimball, host Milk Street on PBS

Christopher Kimball, host Milk Street on PBS. Photo Milk Street

This is Passport to Texas Food Week

Christopher Kimball, former host of America’s Test Kitchen (current host of Milk Street) on PBS TV, is a hunter. Yet, when he included an image of rabbits he shot on his TV show, it didn’t go over well.

Years ago, I had a photograph of me holding up two or three rabbits that I had shot – because I do a lot of rabbit hunting in the winter. America Public Television distributes our show, and I think they sent out a warning indicating the stations may want to gray out that particular photograph. So, most people are not prepared for that, probably.

If you are prepared, and ready to become a hunters, find information to get youstarted on the TPW website.

You see more women hunting now than you did. And, I think in certain parts of the country there’s more of it.

Kimball says when cooking game, you must know the optimal methods for each wild protein.

The tough, dark meat you braise slowly – like the back legs of the rabbit. But, the very lean tenderloin – or backstrap – that gets cooked in about five minutes. Some of that meat you can barely cook – like the tenderloin of a deer. You don’t want to cook it much over medium rare. But, if you have other cuts of meat that are tougher and really need a long, slow cooking – you really have to think about the cuts that way. Because, game meat isn’t fatty. And actually, that’s why they larded. And I’ve done it – larded venison, because it needed the fat. It’s not like a 300 pound pig that’s got a lot of fat in it.

Find game recipes on the Texas Parks and Wildlife website.

The Wildlife and Sport Fish Restoration Program supports our series.

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

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 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.


Find A Central Market Wild Game Class Near You

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.

Buy a License, Feed the Hungry & Help a Veteran

Monday, August 7th, 2017
You can help support Hunters for the Hungry and Fund for Veterans at the time you buy a hunting or fishing license.

You can help support Hunters for the Hungry and Fund for Veterans at the time you buy a hunting or fishing license.

This is Passport to Texas

When licenses go on sale August 15, Texas hunters and anglers may donate to one of two worthy non-profits.

You can make the voluntary contribution of either one dollar, five dollars, ten dollars or twenty dollars to either the Fund for Veterans Assistance, or to help feed Texas families with a donation to Hunters for the Hungry.

Justin Halvorsen is revenue director at Texas Parks and Wildlife, and says donating is voluntary and easy.

It’s through any one of our sales channels. Either online, over the phone, at a retail agent, or any one of our parks and wildlife locations.

The agency keeps close tabs the donations.

And then, at the end of every month, it’ll go into a separate pot, and we’ll send it along to those respective entities [nonprofits].

The program debuted last season and Texans were generous; Texas Parks and Wildlife distributed, $193-thousand to the Fund for Veteran’s, and $106-thousand to Hunters for the Hungry. You may ask: is my donation tax deductible?

That is a great question. And there will be a receipt that gets printed as part of this that specifically says that this is a donation to the Veteran’s Fund or Hunters for the Hungry. And then, really, it’s up to the individual and their tax preparer to make that ultimate decision.

Request an itemized receipt from retailers, and find more information on the TPW website.

That’s our show… Funding provided in part by Ram Trucks. Guts. Glory. Ram

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