Meat Hacks: The Best Way to Cook Pheasant?
Meat Hacks: The Best Way to Cook Pheasant?
Learn the Best Way to Cook Pheasant with Walton's and Meatgistics. Watch the video, read the guide, and then post your questions or comments below.
As any hunting enthusiast knows cooking wild game presents a few more challenges than cooking a farm raised store bought cut of meat. These are animals that lived in the wild on different diets than what they are fed when raised on a farm. They tend to be a little tougher and can have a gamey taste to them this doesn’t mean that we should just accept that they will give us an inferior finished product though.
We’ve had some pheasant sitting in a freezer here for a while and today we are going to prepare and cook them a few different ways and see which one gives us the best results. We have 16 breasts so we are going to Smoke half of them and Sous Vide the other half. We are going to marinate a few of them overnight in butter flavored seasoning which has phosphates to increase the water holding capacity of the meat and then rub them with a few different seasonings. We are also going to marinade two of them with the Kentucky bourbon Spirited Sauce and two in the Smokey Habanero Chipotle sauce and then smoke and sous vide one of each and see which marinade and which cooking method we liked the best.
Now since this is pheasant we do need to get the internal temp up to 165° for food safety so we are going to set our sous vide for 165° and cook them for 4 hours. This will give us our lethality and make the meat nice and tender. For smoking we are going to smoke them at 225° until the internal temp is 165° which should take about 2 hours and we will smoke them over apple woodchips.
The ones we smoked came out tasty but very dry, this is pretty common when smoking pheasant. The ones that were smoked and marinated with phosphates did retain some extra juice but they were still more dry than I would normally prefer.
The Pheasant Breasts that we Sous Vide however were very tender and plump! The ones that we marinated with Phosphate definitely did retain some extra moisture but either way they were still great and far more tender (and tasty) than the smoked ones. Another unintended consequence of Sous Videing then was that some of the gamey taste seemed to go away.
All in all if you have a way to Sous Vide your Pheasant or other birds it is absolutely worth it!
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Jon I’m shocked that you didn’t lean on your upstate NY past and try Spiedie sauce. We marinate halves of any game birds for 24-48 hours just like chicken and grill over indirect heat, sear to finish. If you cube the breasts and skewer them, they would make a great sandwich. If you need a care package from the ROC, you know who to call…
AllanMoyer last edited by
@parksider I think Waltons should donate a saw of their choosing for us to do a review on or any of their products for an honest and
AllanMoyer last edited by
@allanmoyer I want to apologize my last post was meant as a joke but for some reason my LOL at the end did not show.
@allanmoyer Haha it’s all good Allan, I don’t even think we stock a Saw anymore, everything is special order these days but man are they useful to have when you need it!
@parksider A bit of an embarrassing fact is that I didn’t really eat wild game (other than venison jerky) when I was in upstate NY! It just wasn’t part of my culture at that point, moving down to Texas and now Kansas has fixed that but what is Spiedie Sauce?
It’s a vinegar, oil, and spice marinade, very popular in upstate NY. Usually chicken cubed in 1"ish pieces and marinaded for a few days, grilled on kabob skewers, and served on a sausage roll. We do halves of game birds, marinade in 2gallon zip locks then indirect grill. Keep some of the marinade to baste with since wild birds are very lean.
As I. push the carriage forward the slices get bigger and bigger even if I push only the carriage.
Weekly Blog Post - Octopus and Squid, Vacuum Packing
Find out what's going on at Walton's and Meatgistics this week. We will have a loose schedule for soon to be released videos, what we are working on long-term and maybe a few quick tips and tricks that are on our mind!What Videos are being released soon?
Depending on what you see as soon we will have the almost complete first round of Meatgistics University Classes released. We have broken everything down into these categories; Meat Processing Equipment, Seasoning and Additives, Fresh Sausage, Cured Sausage, Jerky, Sausage Casings, Deli Meats, Smoked Meats, Cured Whole Muscle Meats, and Specialty Sausages. Each of these topics will have multiple entry-level classes covering topics like the type of casing to use, equipment needed and a basic processing class where appropriate.What Projects are we looking ahead at?
We are going to be doing two new Will it BBQ’s, hopefully, this week where we try BBQ’ing Squid and Octopus! The squid was a suggestion by Bob Zambutto through Walton’s Inc Facebook account! I had been wanting to do both of these for a while and when I went to our local Asian Grocery Store (Tai Binh for anyone local to Wichita, KS) and they had lots of options for both, they have almost anything and I got a few more weird ideas while I was there! Anyway, I picked up some baby octopus and a full size one, some small squid and two large ones as well. I am excited and nervous to see how this goes if nothing else it should be fun to watch!What’s on our Mind?
Did you know that you shouldn’t vacuum pack Mushrooms or Garlic? I was reading a Vacmaster VP120 instruction manual the other day and I saw an interesting note that said not to vacuum pack Garlic or Mushrooms! I had no idea that you shouldn’t do this so I thought I would share that with meatgistics readers to let you know not to do it as well. Apparently, they both are prone to bacteria that will continue to grow in oxygen-free environments. I was hoping it was something more impressive than that but it is good information to have.New Products
22" X 24" Collagen Sheets This are typically used for larger whole muscle cuts of meat, like when you are making prosciutto, capocollo, or other dried hams. This is an item that we have had lots of requests for over the years so we were happy to finally find a reliable and reputable source for it.
Thanks for the response!
I think a video on processed celery would be incredible. The only place I have been able to find celery powder as a cure was from “The Sausage Maker”, they have a Facebook page. It was expensive, designed only for sausages, and wasn’t packaged well.
As for the tackiness, good idea with the cornstarch! There are a bunch of big brands with zero additives that were able to achieve the soft texture with no tackiness, so I’m thinking it has to be in the processing. I read an article where someone at KRAVE mentioned a couple details about how they process their jerky. He said they first inject the meat, then cook the whole pieces, then slice, then marinate, then dry. I have messed around with the idea behind this process a lot. Injecting with brine, sous-viding at a variety of temperatures and times, slicing, marinating, and drying. Decent results, but to be honest the high sugar method you introduced to me has seemed to have better results.
Anyway, I will keep trying to figure this out and will definitely keep you guys posted if I make any headway. In the meantime, if there is anything else you think might be worth testing, please let me know! It would be great to try and perfect this process together.
@bob-s-meatgistics I moved one of my first pork butts into the oven and my whole house smelled like smoke. My wife did not stop complaining for a week until the smell was gone from both the house and the oven. I finish all my cooks outside. If you wrap it to speed up the cook you may want to unwrap it for the last hour to put the bark back on it.
@jonathon I am definitely going to purchase and follow the steps you’ve post, thank you sir! Additionally, if anyone has recipes, please share. I’ll try them all and post what my family thought of each. Thank you all, this is a very cool and educational blog, glad I found it wish it was years ago! Thanks again.