Archive for March, 2010

We went to visit Morgan Weber of Revival Meats in Yoakum, Texas last weekend to see his gorgeous pigs – spotted and mangalitsas. It was inspiring to see such a productive and cared-for operation. Morgan and Stacey are clearly passionate about their pigs and we would all benefit if more farmers followed their lead.

While at the Revival Meats farm, we had the good fortune to meet Ben from Salt & Time and the topic meandered from field harvesting at Broken Arrow Ranch to feral hog jerky…cuz that’s how we roll. After a bit of research to learn more about wild game, I came across these resources for feral hog novices (and wild game amateurs) like myself. NOTE: A lot of folks in South Texas hunt. And I mean A LOT.

So are you ready to kill and cook your own meat? Then Keith Patton’s page is your first stop for wild game hunting and cooking tips:

To minimize wild taste try to kill the animal when he is at rest or does not know you are there.  Dark cutting meat results in a rank off flavor.  This is recognized by the meat industry, identified in the late 1800’s as a phenomena when animals are agitated or frightened prior to death.  Metabolic processes due to fear result in depleted lactic acid in the muscles(meat) this raises pH or lowers the acidity of the meat which allows bacteria to thrive.  This results in a dark, sticky, gummy meat.  This is common in game meat from animals killed on the run, or coursed or chased with dogs.  Every animal I have killed, pole axed, have been great.  All this is why my grand father used to give us hell when we butched hogs, if we agitated them.  He couldn’t tell us why it mattered but he knew that the meat would be of lower quality, and the hams would have a higher likelihood of spoiling during curing.  Try killing your hogs over a feeder and if they get agitated or are running, pass and come back another day.

Dressing & Cooking Wild Game is a tasty and highly regarded cookbook once you have offed your feral hog.

Oh…and don’t forget that jerky.


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