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Thread: How long should I age my venison???

  1. #21
    Boolit Master Tripplebeards's Avatar
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    Well I was up plowing all night so I’m gonna take a nap I’m sure I won’t be cutting it up when I wake up so it’ll probably be tomorrow’s project.

  2. #22
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    Well I cut only one of the four pieces up yesterday after it aged for a week. The other three pieces I took out quickly and put in three new frozen 2L bottles and then my stacking trays on top of it and put them back my unpressed eat back in the cooler...and they’re still there right now. I just checked the ice that I put on overnight at 99% of it’s melted in the water almost looks clear underneath it so I would assume all the blood has drained out that’s going to. On the positive side I took two of the pieces of steak that I cut off that quarter yesterday and decided I soak them in milk for about an hour and fry them up. My milk did look a little brownish pink when I removed them so it removed some more blood. I cooked on both sides for about 3 to 4 minutes until the bright red raw looking meat was barely pink in the middle. There was zero game taste or “aftertaste” I’m use to getting that I don’t care for. That was the best tasting venison steak I’ve eaten in a long, long time that I’d didn’t have to marinate (guess the milk doesn’t count to leach out some of the blood?). When I cut it up into steaks yesterday I the meat was soft enough I could tear it off the stringy white connecting stuff easily just by pulling it apart with my finger. Very soft...and very tender when I ate it. I’ll be doing this with ALL my deer front now on. Made me a believer. For the people that don’t age their meat I tell him to try putting a piece of venison steak in the refrigerator for a week on ice and keep draining it and try it compared to a piece that they have not aged side-by-side and fry it up and try it. The blood I never leeched out definitely imo is what had given it an “off” taste(gamey)...and also gives me food poisoning symptoms when I consume it. I only had one “toot” a few minutes after eating it and no visits to the Jon! I have found the answer!
    Last edited by Tripplebeards; 01-16-2020 at 12:25 PM.

  3. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by Thundarstick View Post
    Didn't we beat this horse long after death last year?
    And the year before that...

  4. #24
    Boolit Master Tripplebeards's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Todd N. View Post
    And the year before that...
    And I bet it will get asked here again just about every season we are all long gone. Good thing I actually had some positive posters that wanted to help me out and gave some good advice and actual experience then complain that it was asked last year as well.

  5. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tripplebeards View Post
    And I bet it will get asked here again just about every season we are all long gone. Good thing I actually had some positive posters that wanted to help me out and gave some good advice and actual experience then complain that it was asked last year as well.
    Not complaining, just think it's funny. Personally, I will always age mine, but last years thread slid off into eating rotten meat yadda yadda yadda. Your probably rite about it coming up again next season as well. Happy Hunting!

  6. #26
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    How late to seasons go in Wisconsin? Between 3 of us, we shot three deer during MN regular firearms, and I shot one muzzleloader. I have 8 packages of hamburger left. My brother had some jerky and steaks. Other than that those 4 deer are all ate. Why would you wait to butcher?

  7. #27
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    We know who your refering to! one thing about this forum and any fourm. Post your opinion and your going to get some that don't agree. If it bothers you don't ask and you wont get opinions for people that have butchered more deer then you and have a lot more experience. You wont hear the truth. Its about like to be accurate a cast bullet had to bump up to fit the gun wives tales that were rampant on this forum in the early days. Do it any way you want but don't pretend to know something you don't. Personally if I had to age, soak, brine and marinade my meat id wonder what im doing wrong!! I cut mine off a deer killed 12 hours before throw it in a pan and fry it and it tastes wonderful. Like ive said before Ive never had a complaint. I have had people that wont even try it or have preconceived ideas that it tastes funny when in fact it just doesn't taste like beef which it shouldn't because its NOT BEEF. If I want to eat beef ill go buy a steak or some burger because truth be told for most it would be cheaper then hunting. You've said you process like you do because you cant digest it like most can. That's fine but don't try to convince us that plain old venison right off the deer is inferior to what you do. Watched an out doors cooking channel a while back and some gourmet restaurant owning hunter shot a deer on the other side of the ocean. They pealed out the back straps still warm and stuck them on a stick and cooked them over the open fire and all three including that gourmet cook said it was the best venision they ever ate. No aging to soaking no marinade. Just some salt and pepper and a stick. If theres a yada yada yada its your intricate obsession with changing the taste of venision.
    Quote Originally Posted by Thundarstick View Post
    Not complaining, just think it's funny. Personally, I will always age mine, but last years thread slid off into eating rotten meat yadda yadda yadda. Your probably rite about it coming up again next season as well. Happy Hunting!
    Soldier of God, sixgun junky, Retired electrical lineman. My office was a 100 feet in the air, closer to God the better

  8. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lloyd Smale View Post
    We know who your refering to! one thing about this forum and any fourm. Post your opinion and your going to get some that don't agree. If it bothers you don't ask and you wont get opinions for people that have butchered more deer then you and have a lot more experience. You wont hear the truth. Its about like to be accurate a cast bullet had to bump up to fit the gun wives tales that were rampant on this forum in the early days. Do it any way you want but don't pretend to know something you don't. Personally if I had to age, soak, brine and marinade my meat id wonder what im doing wrong!! I cut mine off a deer killed 12 hours before throw it in a pan and fry it and it tastes wonderful. Like ive said before Ive never had a complaint. I have had people that wont even try it or have preconceived ideas that it tastes funny when in fact it just doesn't taste like beef which it shouldn't because its NOT BEEF. If I want to eat beef ill go buy a steak or some burger because truth be told for most it would be cheaper then hunting. You've said you process like you do because you cant digest it like most can. That's fine but don't try to convince us that plain old venison right off the deer is inferior to what you do. Watched an out doors cooking channel a while back and some gourmet restaurant owning hunter shot a deer on the other side of the ocean. They pealed out the back straps still warm and stuck them on a stick and cooked them over the open fire and all three including that gourmet cook said it was the best venision they ever ate. No aging to soaking no marinade. Just some salt and pepper and a stick. If theres a yada yada yada its your intricate obsession with changing the taste of venision.
    Since you quoted. I wasn't referring to anyone. Eat what you want, how you want. O, and just how do you know how many deer I've killed, butchered, and processed?

  9. #29
    Boolit Master Tripplebeards's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by megasupermagnum View Post
    How late to seasons go in Wisconsin? Between 3 of us, we shot three deer during MN regular firearms, and I shot one muzzleloader. I have 8 packages of hamburger left. My brother had some jerky and steaks. Other than that those 4 deer are all ate. Why would you wait to butcher?
    The last gun season is The holiday hunt which is December 24 through January 1. You can shoot as many antler deer as you want as long as you have tags for them and you can buy unlimited tags. I believe Bow hunting goes for another week after. I normally only try to take three or four deer a year for meat. When I am out bow hunting on my property I pass 5 to 6 deer at minimum every time i go it. I just don’t like to shoot deer during archery season unless it’s a monster I’m going to hang on the wall.

    Lloyd always tells me how it is...to eat it and keep toilet paper on hand.lol. I have to admit it taste very good that way too... But I’d run Run out of money buying depends.


    I’m down to cutting up the shoulders. I’m gonna do it in a few minutes. I might actually use them for jerky and start the process right away. I have one complete deer yet in the freezer quartered up but I have to age. This deer and the other deer that I have in the freezer I shot at 3 o’clock on Sunday opening weekend...the weekend before thanksgiving. I skinned and quartered them as soon as I got out of bed in the next morning and wrap them in plastic and threw them in the freezer right away. So they were Cut up and froze in less than 24 hours after being harvested (like always). So I took one complete deer out last week and aged it in my cooler. I will be doing the same with the last one in my freezer starting next week since it turned out great. I had no issues with rotting meat whatsoever and this was done in the house in my cooler. it’s -1 outside right now so there’s no way to age my meat when it freezes solid in no time at all. I’ve always been afraid to try aging meat it was on my bucket list. I’ve left them hanging in the garage decades ago trying to age and they turned blue and green. Part of the problem is I left the hides on them and that’s before the Internet was around to ask questions. Also it was too warm of weather. That’s why I stop shooting deer on opening week and a bow hunting in September I remember they used to literally turn blue and green before I even got them home in 90 weather.
    Last edited by Tripplebeards; 01-17-2020 at 01:20 PM.

  10. #30
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    Now I know why I only thaw one frozen quarter at a time. I bet you took me eight hours plus to cut up and wrap a whole deer. I would say on average the little over two hours time each time I did a shoulder or rear quarter. I’m slow but at least it’s nice cleanly processed meat now.

    Here’s both front shoulders after I cut them up today. I weighed the jerky pieces which weighed 2 lbs. 1 oz. and I would assume there’s about the same amount to be ground up in the burger. It’s starting to snow so I basically just wrapped up my jerky slices and frozen for another day since I’m gonna have to plow in a few hours.



    And hear is some pics of parts of one the rear quarters I cut up into steaks yesterday. Three days of on and off and I still have to grind up burger yet. I took all the burger trimmings and wrapped them up in plastic, poked a bunch of holes in the plastic and sat them in a few bowls. I placed them in the refrigerator to keep aging and drain more from the holes I put I the wrap abd will grind them up tomorrow. The nice part is you can see there’s no blood anywhere after I cut this up since it’s been all drained out from aging.



    Last edited by Tripplebeards; 01-17-2020 at 05:41 PM.

  11. #31
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    We cut and wrap a deer in 2 hours... crew of 4 though... we usually do 3-4 deer a day during hunting season. Sharp knives a MUST along with proper tools to break down the quarters. We use a sawzall with stainless bone blades to quarter the deer and then each of us break down a quarter into hamburger trim, steaks, roasts, stew meat... Steaks packaged for each families needs, I do 2 to a package for myself, the guys with kids might do 8... we vacuum bag it all including hamburger trim. Deer are cut the day of or day after at the latest.

  12. #32
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    ive done a ton of them and can take one from hanging skin on to in the freezer in 2 hours. Lots of it is just after years you find short cuts and breaking them down into muscles gets much easier. that two hours doesn't account for grinding burger or making cut steaks. I freeze that kind of meat in 5 lb bags till I get enough to bother breaking out the equiptment. Other then what im going to put through the cuber I don't cut muscles into steaks either. If its steak its back straps or cube steaks. I try to keep at least one roast off every deer and the rest goes to burger and sausage making. Back straps are left whole or cut in half if its a big one. I take the neck front shoulders, shanks and any trimming from the hind quarters and keep them largest possible size and bag them up in gallon glad bags for burger and sausage. Less chance of freezer burn left whole and my grinder is huge and will take BIG pieces. Couple overhead winch, sharp knifes and a Sawzall are my weapons of choice. I keep my work sharp right on the bench and after every few cuts give I a quick swipe to keep it razor sharp. Only concession to a sharp knife is I use a box cutter with the sectional blades to bone of the meat because its so flexible and razor sharp. I toss the blade after every deer. Ive done as many as 5 in one day. Two is ok but the third one is tough on the old bod and after that were talking agony. But I cant leave them because at 3pm were on our way to shoot more. My partner is crippled up worse then me so he can only do one a day so any more then 2 and its on me. Nice thing then though is im only butcher my half of the deer so it probably closer to a bit over an hour a piece. 5 in one day is my record and that was six with him doing one. After two months of that routine its pretty easy to let small bucks go in deer season. It gets old and by the time it ends were ready for it to end. Its sometimes a 6am to 11 pm job.
    Soldier of God, sixgun junky, Retired electrical lineman. My office was a 100 feet in the air, closer to God the better

  13. #33
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    Yeah, if I’m just skinning, quartering,cutting off back straps, and wrapping them up in plastic pallet wrap to process it another day it takes about 2 hours. I learned the saws all trick from my buddy that came down and shot a few deer on my property. Boy does that go quick! It was the figuring out how I was going to cut it up into steaks and filleting all the nasty silver off that took some time. I’m sure it takes others a lot less time that I’ve been used to doing it I just had to separate and figure out how I was gonna cut them up the best way possible to have some good clean meat. I know what you’re saying about letting some go Lloyd because after you get done cleaning one or two the night before and one walks by the next day if it’s not a head mounter it walks. It’s all fun and games till it hits the ground. Then the real work begins. I’m all done plowing my buddies out of town and I was plowing for him. His plow truck he left me must’ve blew a rear wheel cylinder or both. About halfway done with plowing the brake pedal went to the floor and the brake light came on. I barely got stopped and checked the master cylinder and the front small reservoir was empty. I filled it with fluid twice and it leaked right out in the rear tire areas. I hope he gets it fixed as soon as he gets back Monday and it snows a few more times cause I’ve got some tax money to come up with for my hunting property by the end of the month. Those rear brake lines just cost me about 2 to 250 bucks but I would’ve made plowing.
    Last edited by Tripplebeards; 01-18-2020 at 11:42 AM.

  14. #34
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    I know what you’re saying about letting some go Lloyd because after you get done cleaning one or two the night before and one walks by the next day if it’s not a head mounter it walks. It’s all fun and games till it hits the ground.
    do that for 2 months and only being allowed to shoot does. Luckily I have a good friend with me and we make it fun enough and we get enough meat to make it worth doing. I probably haven't bought 20 lbs of beef in the last 10 years.
    Soldier of God, sixgun junky, Retired electrical lineman. My office was a 100 feet in the air, closer to God the better

  15. #35
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    tell you what an old timer that was a lifetime butcher back when butchers actually butchered told me about draining blood. He said that most don't complain when there cutting up there deer and take there loins or back straps right out of the deer and put them in a pan and fry them. He also said his theory on it is if you freeze your meat your better off leaving the blood. It protects from freezer burning and it actually crystalizes when frozen and when it does its expands and actually that process tenderizes the meat by tearing fibers. When I thaws the more open meat drains fast and is why when you freeze a piece of venison and thaw it later it will have blood in the package that will drain right off. You could probably age for a week and the blood on the inside of muscles of a whole hind quarter is not going to drain. If you doubt that skin a deer right after you hang it. Clean up the spilled blood and let that deer hang for two days and you would find blood on the floor. If you do it was just a few drops left from the skinning and gutting. Blood doesn't evaporate. The water in it might but the only way your going to bleed an animal is like they do with pigs by cutting there throat while there still alive. They know that if the heart doesn't pump it out all that hanging does is get rid of water. Ever cook a steak or burger and see the heat push the blood out of the meat. They age beef and it still has blood in it.
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  16. #36
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    I have had some formal meat processing training in my history. We were always taught the quicker and more blood that can be removed the better. This mirrors may personal experience. On a side note slitting the throat has never been the preferred method for bleeding. Sticking is the best method. It works best when the animal is not stunned and suspended from the rear leg. Good visuals here: https://www.hsa.org.uk/bleeding-and-pithing/bleeding

    On birds like chickens, ducks, geese and turkeys sticking is done by using a small knife and going in through the mouth. All the major knife makers still product sticking knives.

    Archery kills mostly by exsanguination. With firearms non-exsanguination death is more common as is significant amounts of damage that limits the amount of blood loss.

    As soon as the animal expires the blood starts to coagulate. This starts to happen within minutes of death. This is just an opinion based on personals experience but field dressing something like a headshot deer ASAP allows for some blood to drain as the major arteries and veins are cut.

    I have processed headshot deer that were not field dress in a timely manor and the meat retained lots of blood. Even with soaking in buttermilk for 24 the meat still oozed far larger than normal amounts of blood when cooked. It also was subpar for taste.

    For venison have haven't used a saw in 20+ years. For hogs I still uses a Sawzall to split the halves and a band saw for chops and ribs.
    Last edited by M-Tecs; 01-20-2020 at 12:38 AM.
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  17. #37
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    Just finished grinding up 4 pounds of burger all the rest got turned in the steaks along with 2lbs I carved up for jerky. I just took my last deer out of the freezer let it thaw out and start the aging process again for a week until all the blood I can possibly drain out of it I can. When I cut this last deer up my dad wanted to make him venison so I would assume I need to cut it up into cubes for him? Please can venison in the past and it tasted excellent. He’s just out of town for a couple of weeks and I’m not gonna bother him on vacation so I’ll have to Google it. I just remember him telling me he cuts it up into cubes. Im guessing I need to cut up approx 2 inch square chunks of meat?

    Just found this article was kind of interesting just tells different ways people age their meat

    https://www.deerrecipes.online/aging-venison/
    Last edited by Tripplebeards; 01-19-2020 at 04:49 PM.

  18. #38
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    Read up on myoglobin and you'll have a better understanding of why red meat is red. It isn't blood coming out of that burger or steak that's been frozen, or rare steak. Just because it's red, don't mean blood. You'll also understand why meat turns brown.
    We have historically bleed animals because of religious practices. Some cultures eat and drink blood, but Christian and Jewish religions forbid it. There is even a push on for slaughter houses to start using CO2 chambers to more humanly kill the animals. The heart would be stopped before the first cut was ever made.
    Last edited by Thundarstick; 01-19-2020 at 11:54 PM.

  19. #39
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    I grew up eating and making blood sausage and blood cake. I have nothing against eating blood products, however, I do not like the taste that excessive blood imparts to the flavor of the meat. This applies to any and all meat that I consume and yes the slaughter method does effect the amount of blood left in the meat.
    Last edited by M-Tecs; 01-20-2020 at 12:52 AM.
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  20. #40
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    My neighbor is a retired butcher with a huge walk-in that he keeps at 36 degrees. I come over with a deer that was generally harvested the day before and when I drop it off he lets it hang for another 4 days or so, depending on how busy he is. He then trims the meat, cut and wraps it to my specifications and puts it into a freezer until I stop by to pick it up. He does an outstanding job, that I just don't know what I'll do if he fully retires.

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