Big Game Recipes

homemade venison sausage

Maple Breakfast Sausage with Buttery Red Eye Gravy

It’s been my experience that most folks won’t bother giving a sausage recipe a second look. They think it requires special equipment and a chemistry degree. Grinders, cures and casings — and, really, what are those casings made of anyway? This breakfast sausage recipe is as simple as making venison burgers. Nothing more than a…

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Breakfast Venison Steak, Egg and Cheesy Cat Head Biscuit Sandwich

It’s a Southern thing, or “thang.” From the Mississippi Delta to the Appalachians of Virginia, I’ve been served cat head biscuits in various forms, and they’ve all been exceptionally good. Some are light and flaky, others a bit on the heavy side. The “cat head” name comes from the irregular shape of the oversized biscuits.…

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Potato Hot Dish

While working on a television show, I wound up in a popular restaurant in Brainerd, Minnesota, for lunch. One of the featured dishes highlighted on the menu was the “tater tot hot dish,” apparently the state casserole. Four out of five of us, the locals, ordered the hot dish. I was the odd man out.…

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venison neck roast

Apple-Braised Neck Roast

Following the usual braising protocol, the venison neck roast is first browned, and then slow-cooked in a shallow liquid bath in a covered container. I’ve added an additional flavor element by brining the roast for several hours before roasting. This process works just as well with any venison roast. I often hear fellow hunters complain…

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venison shank in pot

Braised Venison Shanks

Please, please, please stop throwing away those delicious venison shanks! Roasted in the oven and simmered in liquid, they make exceptional stocks and broths. But when braised osso bucco-style, the delicate, moist meat will impress even the most game-wary eater. The process takes a few hours, but it can be prepared a day or two…

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venison cottage pie

Shepherd’s Cottage Pie

My mother used to make something she called “shepherd’s pie” several times a year. It was one of her best dishes, but the best part was watching my dad stir up the potatoes with the tomato sauce, green beans and ground beef. It looked like something a 4-year-old would create, and it drove my mom…

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venison meatballs

Meatballs for the Masses

Many years ago, I owned a catering company, Silver Sage Caterers, with my buddy, Greg Cornell. I’ve since moved on to other, less demanding pursuits, but Greg’s still cranking out some of the best chow in northern California. As any caterer knows, when preparing food for large groups, most of the grunt work has to…

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roast with bacon

Bacon-Wrapped Backstrap

It’s not what you think. This recipe takes the relationship between bacon and venison to a whole new level. Picture a seasoned venison backstrap, topped with chopped mushrooms and totally encased in crispy bacon. If your deer was a small one, you might have to use a pair of backstraps. Since the recipe specifies the…

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roasted venison with herbs and vegetables

Apple-Stuffed Backstrap

Backstraps can be stuffed with just about anything you can imagine — asparagus, roasted bell pepper, your favorite cheese, mushrooms, ham, cream cheese, dried fruit and anything else that honks your horns. This is one of my favorite combinations that’s sweet, sour, cheesy and spicy.

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