Venison. The only meat…

Doe a Deer, a female deer…

There really is a song for everything, eh?

Here in the Boondocks hunting is simply a part of who we are. It is such a part of our life that it seems almost silly to think there are those of you out there who would find this an exotic action.

Of course, Ikea seems exotic to those of us living the woodland life, so I guess Tomato, Tomahto.

My husband is an avid hunter, of all things. That means from September to December I become a hunting widow. He gets up, works, hunts, sleeps. Repeat. Bow, muzzle loader, rifle etc. It doesn’t matter the weather or occasion, a hunting he will go!

There was a time, early on in our relationship, where I was mystified by this behavior. I wouldn’t take him seriously that he couldn’t just go to the movies, or take a day off hunting to attend a party. What could be more important than cocktails and party dresses?

Slowly though, I realized that hunting was more than just recreation. It’s a part of his identity. Hunting provides him with a sense of purpose and connection.

Over time hunting and I have become friends. It has brought me a better understanding and respect for the food that I eat. Going to the grocery store and buying pre-packaged meat lends you to believe that food is just available. Picking up that package and checking out leaves us so far removed from the consequences and realities of how that food came to our plate. And sometimes leads us to so little appreciation for it.

After witnessing many a death and butchering of deer I can no longer feel so removed. I have been a part of the gutting, skinning, and butchering of all the deer my husband shoots. And from those experiences, I truly appreciate and respect both the animal and the hunter. Being involved has made a huge difference in how I feel about preparing and eating meat. I love it, and am damn excited to eat it, but I really can be proud of the fact that I know where that steak came from and what it took to get it there! And sometimes, I think it makes it taste that much better!

This year we went into new meat territory.

We made our own venison sausage!

Usually, my husband butchers the main cuts and sends the leftovers to a guy who makes the sausage for us. This year, he decided , why not try it ourselves?

The result: Delicious homemade sausage!!!!

It was so easy, and it is so delicious, I can’t believe we hadn’t made it ourselves sooner!

So along with the rest of our cuts, the freezers are stocked with over 20 pounds of delicious, spicy, venison sausage! Two weeks ago I made our first dish with it, Cauliflower Venison Sausage Pasta. (I substituted the turkey for venison) So yummy I can hardly wait to make it again!

Good bye beef. Good bye pork! I’ll be seeing you on a menu somewhere!

For the Draus House it is, Venison, Venison and Venison!

~L

 

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