Discover Culinary Treasures In Your Gut Pile!
Wild Offal Sure Isn’t Awful… Yes! You Can Eat That!
You too can discover culinary treasures in your gut pile! From gut pile to treasure trove … I won’t lie… it took a bit of courage for me to really dive into my gut piles, and treasure hunt for all the valuable, but generally discarded offal. Trepidation quickly changed to anticipation as I had discovered a whole new world of rarely found delicious ingredients to work with: beautiful hearts, livers, gizzards, and sheets of lacy caul fat! For me, it now feels like a crime to leave these behind for coyote bait.
As the “Field to Table”, and “Eat Everything” trends continue to grow so does the need to make everything taste wonderful! It is refreshing to see hunter/chefs dedicate cookbook, and blog space to wonderful preparations of offal! Celebrity Chefs are hosting dinners devoted entirely to offal , and serving the likes of blood, heart, liver, tripe and testicles across five courses — including pudding.
Please Check Out the Winter Issue of Maryland Hunting Quarterly for the complete list of recipes beginning on page 16:
Caul fat is the membranous fat that surrounds the digestive organs of pigs, cows, and sheep. In my experience it is also found in deer, elk, and antelope. With game being very lean, caul fat is perfect for wrapping pâtés, meatballs, sausages, or roasts to keep them moist while they cook.
Crepe Wrapped Elk Meatloaf with Kale and Shallots
1 large shallot, chopped finely
2 tablespoon melted Black Truffle Butter
2 cups baby kale
2 pounds ground elk
1/4 cup freshly grated parmesan cheese
1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
1 lemon’s zest finely grated
1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1/4 cup dry sherry
1 large piece elk/venison caul fat, rinsed clean (about 1/4 pound)
2 tablespoons canola oil
Preheat oven to 400° F. In a medium sauté’ pan, sweat the minced onion in 1 tablespoon each canola oil, and truffle butter over medium-low heat until it’s soft and translucent — about 5 minutes. Add the kale and cook, stirring constantly until it’s wilted and soft, about 3 minutes. Place in a large bowl to cool. Once the kale and onion have cooled completely add ground elk and next 6 ingredients. Mix with hands till totally incorporated.
Lay out the sheet of lacy caul fat. Lay the elk meat mixture on the caul fat, turn in ends of fat and roll into a neat, tight roll. Placed on a pan brushed with 1 tablespoon canola oil, and brush the roll with 1 tablespoon each canola oil, and melted truffle butter. Bake till internal temperature reads 165 degrees F. Let rest, 10 minutes, and slice into 1 ½’ slices.