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Pulled Venison? Venison Pastrami?

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  • phrogpilot73
    Club Member
    • Oct 2017
    • 133
    • Virginia Beach, VA
    • Outdoor Equipment
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      Favorite things to smoke
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    Pulled Venison? Venison Pastrami?

    So I was gifted a whole venison shoulder - my boss loves to hunt, but can't keep up with the deer he gets, so he'll often gift me some to figure out a new recipe for. Only rule is that I have to bring him lunch (of venison) the day after I cook what I've figured out. Sounds like a pretty good deal to me!

    I've done bacon wrapped, smoked, then ground and cooked in a texas chili recipe, as well as reverse seared backstrap in tacos (carne asada style).

    The shoulder to me (it's from a pretty good sized dear) screams the smoker. But I know it's so lean it's tough to get any real kind of smoke on it.

    My first thought was pulled venison. Smoke it low and slow, but then wrap midway with some sort of liquid (basically keeping it moist), and up the temperature at the same time. My only fear is drying it out, since Venison is so lean. Could wrap in bacon (or toss some fatback in a foil pan and "braise" the venison in that instead of wrapping it) but I don't want the bacon flavor to overpower the venison.

    Then, I thought about doing Pastrami. The curing of the shoulder should change the cell structure/retain enough moisture to prevent my drying out fears.

    What do you think?
  • MBMorgan
    Club Member
    • Sep 2015
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    #2
    Oh, Jerod ( Jerod Broussard ) ...

    Comment

    • Troutman
      Club Member
      • Aug 2017
      • 7200

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      #3
      Pastrami and braising would be my choices given the low fat content.

      Comment

      • Jerod Broussard
        Moderator
        • Jun 2014
        • 9586
        • East Texas
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        #4
        No pulling this stuff!!!!!

        Comment


        • HorseDoctor
          HorseDoctor commented
          Editing a comment
          Correct!!!
      • bardsleyque
        Club Member
        • Oct 2015
        • 590
        • Snoqualmie Wa.

        #5
        best venison I ever had was sliced thin and pan fried in olive oil with garlic

        Comment

        • Jerod Broussard
          Moderator
          • Jun 2014
          • 9586
          • East Texas
          • Pit Barrel Cooker "Texas Brisket Edition"
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            Thermoworks Thermapen w/ Back light (gift)
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            B & B and Kingsford Charcoal
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          #6
          Now I'm home I can elaborate.

          1. Young deer, yearlings or so, can be cut up into steaks with minimal tenderizing and grilled with no problems.

          2. Stuff is best medium-rare but I've done plenty well-done since my wife thinks medium-rare is the devil. It's funny, but I can taste more liver undertones when it is well-done. Thankfully there is bacon wrapped around it to offset the taste. This is with bacon wrapped back strap.

          3. There is a BIG reason why when we make deer sausage that it is made with pork butt.

          4. Thin sliced and fried (flour batter) is awesome too. I like it this way sans bacon.

          Comment


          • HorseDoctor
            HorseDoctor commented
            Editing a comment
            Cooked well done venison does taste “livery” unless it is braised (pot roast) or done as stew.
        • KevinG
          Club Member
          • Oct 2016
          • 147
          • Hummelstown ,PA
          • Weber 26.5" kettle
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          #7
          I think you'll be better off de boning that shoulder and seaming it down into smaller muscle groups. You can get some nice "steak" and small round/loin type cuts out of the front shoulder and some smaller roasts. Here in PA most guys take deer to processors so they'll get a lot of burger type products, but you can get a lot more from that shoulder. Most difficult part is to get the meat off of the blade without destroying the shoulder clod. That meat has some potential. Just seam it apart removing all the connective tissue, fat, and silver skin. Sharp boning knife is the key. As your seaming it down, you'll see nice muscle groups of meat that you could leave whole or slice into steaks, cubes, etc... There's is a piece called the mock tender... that is fabulous. they'll take some smoke...you could start those off on the cold side of a kettle with some smoke and then sear them up to 135-140. The fat on whitetail deer is not desirable at all to most folks, so you wont have a pleasant experiencing taking a whole shoulder and doing it low and slow...In my opinion of course. Now, in a full on survival/eat to live/or pioneer situation, I'm sure folks did whole shoulders. Most, if not all, venison at restaurants is farm raised, so it will often have a grain and grass diet. Most hunters will tell you a corn fed deer tastes slightly different than a deep woods deer that eats acorns and other browse. I usually don't take risks with something extreme like making pastrami or large roasts, as I would feel sick to my stomach if I wasted the meat of a deer I harvested. That's my opinion as an amateur venison butcher and lifelong archery hunter.

          Comment


          • EdF
            EdF commented
            Editing a comment
            Thanks!
        • HorseDoctor
          Charter Member
          • Sep 2014
          • 1149
          • Central Iowa

          #8
          I’ve done corned venison using chunks of round (rear leg) with very good results. The corned is boiled as with “corned beef & cabbage”. Afraid it’s too lean to take the next step to pastrami successfully.

          Comment

          • HorseDoctor
            Charter Member
            • Sep 2014
            • 1149
            • Central Iowa

            #9
            Another option would be to season and smoke roast the shoulder to medium rare. Then refrigerate overnight, slice thin and make a sandwich on rye bread with salt, lettuce and some of MeatHead’s Secretariat sauce (+/- a slice of Swiss cheese). That’s a sure winner!!!

            Comment


            • EdF
              EdF commented
              Editing a comment
              Sounds great!

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