cooking, cooking venison, cooking wild game, homemade, homesteading, venison

Sausage and Kale Stuffed Venison

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At any given time, if you ask us what is in our freezer right now, we can give you a pretty accurate inventory. For those of you who live a similar lifestyle to us, you understand that it is essential to know what you have, what you are running out of, what needs to be used ASAP, and what you might need.

That being said, we have to figure out daily, the answer to “what’s for dinner?”, in a different way. Today while thinking of what was in the freezer, we decided it would be a venison night (we eat venison at least once a week, if not more). Then comes the inventory….what else do we have to make a simple venison roast spectacular and how are we going to prepare it?

The answer came in the form of a Sausage and Kale Stuffed Venison with an Onion Dijon Mustard Sauce. Who ever said homestead eating was boring???

The Recipe

Venison Roast (2-3 lb.)

1/2 lb bulk Italian sausage, sweet or hot

1/4 cup frozen cooked kale

1 small onion, chopped

1 tbsp Dijon mustard

1/3 cup Vermouth or white wine for de-glazing pan

1 cup chicken stock

Olive Oil

Salt and Pepper

Butcher’s twine

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a cast iron pan lightly coated in olive oil, over med/high heat, brown the sausage. Once browned, toss in the kale and stir to combine. Remove from heat and set aside.

Using a very sharp knife, butterfly the roast. Slice the roast in half as if you were going to filet it, but do not go all the way through. Open the roast like a book. Then on the left side, working from the middle crease, filet the roast again, also not going all the way through, open the flap you just created, then repeat on the right side. (I will confess here, I learned this technique years ago from a youtube video, so feel free to look that up) You will end up with a relatively flat quadruple sized roast. Lay a gallon sized freezer bag over the meat and pound out to about 1/2 inch uniform thickness.

Using about an 18″ piece of butchers twine, make a loop in one end and slide under the roast as shown. Spoon the sausage/kale mixture over the meat and spread out leaving about 1/2 around the edge. Set your cast iron pan aside as you will use it for the sauce.

Now the fun part. Start to roll up the roast as tight as you can, rolling away from you and keeping the twine underneath. Once rolled, place the seam side down. Grab the loose end of the twine and feed it through the loop. Wrap the twine around the roast and when you come back around, feed your loose end under the twine and repeat until you get to the end of the roast. Tie off in a knot and cut off any excess.

Season the outside with salt and pepper and roast on an olive oil coated rack on a baking sheet. 60 minutes for med rare, adding additional time for more well done meat.

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While the venison is roasting, add a drizzle of olive oil to the cast iron pan you cooked the sausage in, and heat to medium. Once heated, add the onion and cook until the onion is caramelized and yummy. Remove the pan from the heat and add the vermouth or wine. Return the pan to the heat and stir with a whisk, picking up all of the leftover sausage bits. Once all of the bits are off the pan and combined, and the vermouth is reduced by about 1/2, add the mustard and chicken stock. Stir to combine and heat through. Turn the heat off.

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After the roast is cooked to your liking, remove it to a cutting board. Let the roast rest for 10 minutes. Carefully cut and remove the twine and slice your stuffed roast. I like to cut it on a bit of an angle, it just looks so pretty! Arrange the slices on a plate, quickly heat the sauce and pour over the sliced roast. Enjoy!!!

NOTE: This recipe also works great for pork loin, or beef roast. Feel free to substitute spinach for the kale. Also, if you are not a fan of cooking with alcohol, simply go straight to the chicken stock. Which, by the way is  another item always in the freezer since all of our roast chicken (homestead raised, of course!) meals end in a beautiful stock for future for soups, sauces and gravy.

 

 

 

 

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cooking, tacos, venison

Homestead pulled pork tacos

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Everyone is a fan of taco Tuesday and we are no exception. Here on the homestead we just do it a little different. No Ortega taco kits like when you were a kid.  Here we use as many fresh ingredients as possible, we raised the pigs, we grew the veggies, and we even made the soft taco shells.  This meal actually started last spring if you think about it, when we picked up our piglets from the farm and started our seeds in the basement.

making the taco shells

First we made dough using a very simple recipe and mixed the ingredients using our kitchen aid mixer with  the dough hook.

soft taco recipe

4 cups all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon salt

2 teaspoons baking powder 

2 tablespoons crisco

1 1/2 cups water

Mix all dry ingredients in mixer then add crisco,  blend until the mixture looks like crumbs.  Add water slowly until dough sticks to hook.  Make small dough balls about 1.5 inches in diameter, and either roll out or press into a 5″ circle.  Then cook in lightly greased hot cast iron pan, until lightly browned on each side.

 

 

pulled pork recipe

We started our home grown pulled pork in the slow cooker in the morning.  We used a 3lb picnic roast from the pigs we raised this summer. We placed it in the slow cooker and added black pepper, garlic powder, cumin, paprika, and cayenne.  We then poured 1/2 bottle of homemade hard cider over the roast and covered and cooked on low for 10 hrs.

 

 

After ten long hours we removed the pork from the pot and discarded the remaining liquid. We then made the BBQ sauce directly in the crock pot.  Everyone has their own favorite BBQ sauce recipe but ours includes mixing together ketchup, brown sugar, black pepper, garlic, cayenne, paprika, and apple cider vinegar.  Then shred the pork with two forks and return to pot and stir into sauce.

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Serve on top of your homemade soft tacos and top with your favorite taco toppings.  We love simple toppings like cheddar cheese, sour cream, and our homemade pickled jalapenos.

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So next time its taco Tuesday take it to the next level and make it yourself.  Or really get crazy and buy a couple of pigs like we did.