Ask The Biologist

Fat Chance!

Fat Chance!

By Bob Humphrey

Not all fats are the same, so be careful what you use in ground venison.

QUESTION: The deer I shot last year was loaded with fat, especially around the belly. I’m going to try to process my own deer this year and am wondering if I should include some of the fat when I grind it up.

ANSWER: No! Not all fat is the same. Most of the fat you find on a deer, between the skin and body cavity and around the kidneys and inner body cavity is hard and waxy – suet. Trim off as much as you can. It can be used for soap or candle-making or feeding birds. Some folks render it and use it for cooking, but it tends to have a gamey flavor.

You might also find a thin, lacy layer of fat around the entrails. This caul fat can be included, if you care to bother with it. Because they work for a living rather than loafing around the farm or ranch, deer largely lack the intermuscular fat that gives beef and other red meats their flavor. However, adding beef or pork fat to your ground venison will enhance the flavor and make it more moist.

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Copyright 2021 by Buckmasters, Ltd.

Copyright 2020 by Buckmasters, Ltd