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Aging Big Game Meat

 
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mountainman
(80 posts)
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Oct-23-16, 
04:36 PM (MST)
"Aging Big Game Meat"

Do you think aging is a benefir for game meat ?

If so how can you do it without the benefit of a walk in freezer ???

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  Table of Contents  

 Subject   Author   Message Date   ID 
 RE: Aging Big ...  Soj51hopefu...      Oct-23-16   1 
  RE: Aging Big ...  mountainman      Oct-23-16   2 
 RE: Aging Big ...  Soj51hopefu...      Oct-23-16   3 
 RE: Aging Big ...  UtahJimmy      Oct-25-16   4 
  RE: Aging Big ...  mountainman      Oct-29-16   5 
   RE: Aging Big ...  chasemike      Nov-12-16   6 
    RE: Aging Big ...  mmwb      Nov-15-16   7 
     RE: Aging Big ...  COLOelkman      Nov-27-16   8 
 RE: Aging Big ...  brutus54      Jan-21-17   9 
  RE: Aging Big ...  2f350s      Mar-29-17   10 
 RE: Aging Big ...  scubohuntr      Jun-15-17   11 
 RE: Aging Big ...  So_NV_Lady_...      Aug-22-17   12 
  RE: Aging Big ...  joesikora      Aug-23-17   13 
 RE: Aging Big ...  wytex      Oct-04-17   14 
  RE: Aging Big ...  6x7      Nov-10-17   15 

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Soj51hopefull
(611 posts)
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Oct-23-16, 
05:47 PM (MST)
1. "RE: Aging Big Game Meat"

I have an understanding wife. That being said every time I kill a deer I clear out the fridge of the crap and lay a towel on the bottom. Then lay the oven racks on something to give me an air gap above the towel. Then lay the quarters and straps on the racks. I give it at least 3 days and I believe it makes a definitive difference. It's our only fridge so we are in and out of it all the time to flow the air. I wouldn't do this with a separate fridge unless you opened it every few hours, the meat needs air flow. But I 100% believe it makes the meat more tender and better flavor.

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mountainman
(80 posts)
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Oct-23-16, 
07:38 PM (MST)
2. "RE: Aging Big Game Meat"

Thanks for the information. Do you live from coolers during those 3 days ?

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Soj51hopefull
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Oct-23-16, 
07:52 PM (MST)
3. "RE: Aging Big Game Meat"

No, like I said I have a very understanding wife! The top shelf is crammed with the essentials and the next 2 shelves are meat. This works for a deer or small to average bear. Wouldn't work for a mature elk. She ( the wife) will get a little pissy if I leave it in there for more than 4 days.

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UtahJimmy
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Oct-25-16, 
09:33 AM (MST)
4. "RE: Aging Big Game Meat"

I keep it in the cooler and swap out frozen water bottles every evening. Put the partially melted ones back in the freezer, pack new ones in the cooler. Drain the cooler as well so the blood doesn't spoil the meat. Do this for about a week and the meat is always delicious!

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mountainman
(80 posts)
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Oct-29-16, 
11:23 AM (MST)
5. "RE: Aging Big Game Meat"

Thank you for the info. My son got a Muley buck in the last couple of days. This will help.

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chasemike
(381 posts)
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Nov-12-16, 
08:11 PM (MST)
6. "RE: Aging Big Game Meat"

For deer I hang in garage during the night. In morning wrap real good and lay on concrete. I repeat this for about seven days when starts getting dark it is time. Lot of different ways.

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mmwb
(2255 posts)
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Nov-15-16, 
01:08 PM (MST)
7. "RE: Aging Big Game Meat"

I don't age antelope or deer. You do want to be sure to let the rigor release before cutting muscle cross grain, or it will be tough. Elk is aged, based in how long it takes me to get too it. Given that it is a courser grained meat than the other two, aging would lend to it being more tender, though I've not had tough elk.

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COLOelkman
(757 posts)
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Nov-27-16, 
01:02 PM (MST)
8. "RE: Aging Big Game Meat"

I have a great book I highly recommend that covers this as well as many other things in great detail called "From Mountain to Table Top" by Matt Pelton who is from UT.
I see it on Amazon for $10 and he has several other cookbooks also.

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brutus54
(413 posts)
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Jan-21-17, 
10:55 AM (MST)
9. "RE: Aging Big Game Meat"

LAST EDITED ON Jan-21-17 AT 10:57 AM (MST)

LAST EDITED ON Jan-21-17 AT 10:57 AM (MST)

I have an old fridge in my garage that I took all the shelf's out of and line with cardboard so I can stack all four quarters upright and the back straps and neck meat in game bags on the cardboard. I plug it in before I hit the hills and when I get back it is nice and cold. And after I get something in camp if its to hot to hang it goes in a cooler on ice for the ride home. I let it age for up to a week. I have been doing this for close to forty years and it works great for me. What I like most about it is I cut it up when I want too not when I have too.

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2f350s
(284 posts)
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Mar-29-17, 
07:32 AM (MST)
10. "RE: Aging Big Game Meat"

Great table fare starts with proper field care, be very clean and quick getting your game out of the field, into proper game bags, and hanging as possible.

I "dry age" my meat for 7 days in a emptied-out fridge with no hide to let the clear outer membrane dry and harden. This allows the meat to break down naturally enhancing flavor. When butchering, remove (literally, skin off) all the dried membrane, you will lose a bit more meat this way but the results taste great! At least every friend I share my own butchered game with loves it.


2f350s: Hunt hard, hunt ethically.

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scubohuntr
(21 posts)
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Jun-15-17, 
11:51 AM (MST)
11. "RE: Aging Big Game Meat"

If you hang your game until it is in full rigor (a couple of hours) you have 90% of the benefit you will get from any amount of aging. Most of the time, it will be in full rigor by the time you get it out of the woods, unless you can drive right up to it. Best results are if you can let it set up with the muscles at full extension. Aging can add some quality, IF you have a fully controlled environment (38 degrees, near 100% humidity, absolutely sanitary surfaces, clean air), no bloodshot meat, and no contamination. Aging is, after all, a controlled decomposition process. If you don't have control, all that's left is decomposition. Hanging an animal in the garage for a week is not aging, it's bacteria farming. I've hung meat before, but these days the only time I will hang an animal is if I shot it close enough to home that it has not gone into rigor yet when I get it home. If that's the case, I will hang a deer head down for a few hours. Otherwise, it goes right into butchering.

Dry aging is a different process, that is done with individual cuts or primals in the refrigerator. It can be done, and if you don't mind losing 5-10% of your meat to crusting it can improve flavor and tenderness a bit. I may try it if I end up with a lot of deer and elk this fall. Usually I am really stingy with game meat and don't want to risk losing any.

The major players in game meat quality are cooling the carcass immediately, keeping it clean, getting rid of all fat, hair, and bone in contact with the meat immediately, and not overcooking it. And remember it is not beef or pork. It does not respond well to being cooked like beef or pork.

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So_NV_Lady_Hntr
(30 posts)
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Aug-22-17, 
04:03 PM (MST)
12. "RE: Aging Big Game Meat"

I do like to age the animals I harvest. Other than 'anecdotally' getting more tender meat, it allows me to take my time and work around my work/life schedule and/or wait for a weekend.

I do not have a walk in cooler, however, I have a spare chest freezer and I purchased a 'Johnson Freezer Temperature Controller' to basically convert it into a cooler to age primal cuts. Just make sure your quarters and game bags are dry, since the freezer doesn't have much airflow and moisture cannot really escape.

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joesikora
(1421 posts)
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Aug-23-17, 
10:56 AM (MST)
13. "RE: Aging Big Game Meat"

I can't remember how I came up with this. I will take a few moving blankets lay on the garage floor. I lay the whole deer on them, pack with bags of ice inside the cavity and all over the outside of the deer and cover with more blankets. I leave it this way for a few days, then butcher. I found that leaving the hide on keeps the meat just the same as if I skinned it the first day with the exception that the meat is a lot more tender. I also put Tyvek on the floor first and use it while I'm butchering then when I'm done I just roll up and throw in the trash. Keeps the floor a lot cleaner.

I guy told me his friend will hang a deer that has been skinned until the meat is almost black and when he came poke his finger through the hinds it's done.

Joe

"Sometimes you do things wrong for so long you
think their right" - 2001
"I can't argue with honesty" - 2005
-Joe E Sikora

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wytex
(128 posts)
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Oct-04-17, 
02:25 PM (MST)
14. "RE: Aging Big Game Meat"

Hang and age all of our game in our garage. We're lucky in Wyoming to have the right temps usually all hunting season. 7 days usually for deer and antelope but not always.Elk as long as it needs.

Coolbots are a great way to make a walkin cooler out of a window a/c.

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6x7
(1141 posts)
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Nov-10-17, 
07:28 PM (MST)
15. "RE: Aging Big Game Meat"

Kill it cut it vacuume pack it then age it in a garge fridge at a fixed cold temp for a week before freezing

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