Wild Turkey Salad

Being on the go so often, it can sometimes be easy to overlook the freezer downstairs that’s full of meat when prepping meals. I’d be lying if I said it doesn’t add extra work to cook a meal from scratch compared to swinging by the store for lunch meat or hot dogs but I’d also be lying if I didn’t admit that I’d take any of these meals over a plain old salami sandwich any day. And there’s something pretty darn magical about using the fruits of previous days afield to fuel new ones. Here is one of my simplest recipes to put together on a work night using some wild turkey I had in the freezer.

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Senegalese Goose Leg Ndambe

Ndambe (pronounced NAM-bey) is a type of bean stew found in the country of Senegal, in west Africa. The spicy stew, most often made with black-eyed peas, gets spread onto baguettes along with mayo and hot sauce and is served as street food in Dakar and other Senegalese city-centers. The sandwich goes by the same name as the stew and makes for a filling and delicious breakfast, lunch, or dinner, though it’s most often eaten for breakfast.

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Smoked Pulled Pork Tacos

Ryan and I used to spend a lot of time cutting the meat off the shoulder of the game that we had harvested and would always stick it in the “grind” pile. As you know, shoulder meat is a tough cut of meat and depending on the size of game, there’s not always a lot there. Or there is… and it’s just really hard to get every piece. The shoulder is a precarious bone to work around.
Awhile back Ryan decided to keep a shoulder whole and make this recipe just to see how it would turn out. And holy moly, he hit it out of the park! Every time he makes this recipe, people are just floored how good it is. At Ryan’s recent Marine Corps 1/5 reunion, a couple of his brothers and him went on a hog hunt and came home with a nice sow. Instead of dividing it up between themselves, Ryan decided to cook most of it for supper (because who doesn’t like a good taco?!).
There were definitely a few sceptics due to the fact that this was wild pig and many don’t think it’s edible or dangerous to eat. Eventually everyone dug in and absolutely loved it! It’s always fun to turn sceptics into believers and I’m pretty sure that the pig population in Texas should be worried with the Devil Dogs now on the prowl!

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Jerk Wild Turkey

For many of us the end of the spring wild turkey season means the beginning of backyard gatherings with family and friends and the smoky aroma of your favourite barbequed meal. This Jamaican Jerk inspired dish is a great option to add to your wild game backyard barbeque repertoire and has the perfect balance of both heat and sweet.

This (wet) marinade consists of a blend or spices/seasoning including garlic, brown sugar, thyme, nutmeg, cloves, ginger, green onions and my favourite hot pepper to both grow and eat, the scotch bonnet. It can be easily modified to adapt to your preferred flavour profile or used for your fresh caught fish/shrimp or other seasonal game.

Personally, I like mine spicy and will add an additional hot pepper (or two) and let it marinate for 24 hours because the longer you marinate, the tastier your dish will be!

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Corazon de Hugo

Nothing like a “HEART-Y” soup, am I right? This is a different take on Carne de Hugo, a Mexican dish which translates to “ meat in its juices”. Depending on who you talk to it’s a fine line between a soup and a stew, I go a little on the soup side because I love the broth. It’s a protein rich dish served with beans which I substituted the steak for wild pig heart.

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Wild Turkey Po’ Boy

Up here in Ontario, we are among the last wild turkey habitats to get a proper spring. I’ve hunted turkeys in blizzards, and I’ve been out on the last weekend of May in a heavy coat and toque. Although we are building our own wild turkey tradition in the province, the traditions we are developing are built on the back of a greater historical legacy, one that is arguably rooted in the US South (apologies to Pennsylvania). All the yarns and tales of turkey hunting that I grew up reading were in the Carolinas, Tennessee, Kentucky, Mississippi, and Louisiana. It is a staple sandwich from that last state that my mind headed to when I pulled the trigger on my biggest tom turkey to date in early May of this year. I had been to New Orleans pre-Katrina and had fallen immediately in love with the people, the food, and city’s culture. I went once again in 2013 for a business engagement, and although things had changed in the Crescent City, po’ boy sandwiches had not. They remained everything that a sandwich should be: simple, portable, and packed with flavour.

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Confit Squirrel Egg Rolls

Confit is the process of slow cooking at lower temperature over a period of time in grease or fat. This is contrary to deep frying in a much greater temperature for a short period of time. It was originally meant as a preservation for meats and vegetables. Now, you will see this process intended more as a braising process for immediate consumption. The result of confit can be a smooth rich flavor profile. For this recipe, I used rendered duck fat.

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Wild Boar Queso Roll

When it gets to this time of year I really start to get the hunting blues. It seems like the August archery season is a lifetime away. Luckily for us we can hunt wild boar whenever we want! We recently took a trip down to Texas with five archers and were able to come home with five boar. This means a freezer full of boar and fun new boar recipes to come! This recipe takes after my Armenian Heritage mix with one of my favorite cuisines; Mexican. It’s a clash of a kebab, Al Pastor and a quesadilla. I call it the wild boar queso roll! If you don’t have long skewers you can do it on smaller wooden ones just make sure you kebab fits your tortilla. Also if you’re using smaller skewers you can always leave the grill grates on just make sure your grates are nice and seasoned!

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Cajun Garlic-Butter Canada Goose Bites with Maque Choux

This is a quick, easy, and delicious recipe that will put dinner on the table in about 30 minutes. The spicy garlic butter pan sauce laced with Cajun spices works magically with cubed goose breast. I chose the Cajun staple maque choux for the side, since it’s delicious, easy to prepare, and provides the perfect amount of sweetness to counterbalance the spicy richness of the goose. I also served blanched sugar snap peas with a spritz of lemon juice on the side for some crunch. Be sure you don’t overcook the goose breast, once it’s past medium done, it develops a grainy texture and undesirable flavors.

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