New Years Eve is the perfect opportunity to get together with friends and family for a wild game feast. Whether you are all avid hunters or are looking to introduce someone to wild game for the first time, this is a great way to explore the many flavours of the wild.
We recently had a wild game dinner with my parents, and it was fun to introduce them to some new dishes that they had never tried, while indulging in familiar favourites. We enjoyed albacore tuna sushi rolls, smoked deer heart, elk and deer roast and bacon-wrapped halibut bites – we had additionally planned Dungeness crab but, believe it or not, we forgot the crab in the fridge until after we finished eating!
What Should You Make?
Doing a wild game supper potluck style is a great way to be introduced to new meat or new recipes. It’s good to have a variety of protein – dishes made from salmon, shellfish and elk are often familiar foods, whereas branching out into dishes containing black bear, cougar and octopus are probably best reserved for those with a more adventurous palate.
Unless you have a large crowd, it is wise to try and scale down the size of recipes. Think appetizer style, snacky dishes; it is amazing how far one pound of meat will go if there’s 10 different dishes on the table.
If you only have one kitchen to work with, another thing to take into account is how you will prepare all the food. Things that can be prepared ahead of time and served cold (sushi, crab meat, etc.) minimize work the evening of; cooking things on the barbeque or in a smoker frees up oven space if needed.
Don’t forget some palate cleansers. It can be easy to get focus on filling plates with wild game, but even a simple veggie tray or salad provides a bit of balance to things.
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