Essential Equipment for a Wild Game Cook by Kory Slye
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Essential Equipment for a Wild Game Cook
It doesn’t take much to create some amazing wild game dishes with the equipment that is in a normally stocked kitchen. But there are a few essential pieces of equipment that I recommend every wild game cook should have in order to take their meals to the next level.
One of the most important pieces of equipment in a wild game cook’s kitchen is a good set of knives. A dull knife is not only ineffective and frustrating, it’s also dangerous. One knife does not do it all, so make sure there is a knife that is properly suited to handle the specific tasks needed. Whether it’s a fillet knife, a boning knife, or a chef’s knife, make sure it is the right tool for the job. Having a good, sharp set of knives is necessary to easily fillet that walleye or salmon, skin and debone that whitetail, and carve that wild turkey. The Outdoor Edge GamePro kit is the perfect place to start, with four different knives, a sharpener, and other accessories, it has everything needed to break down the harvest and turn it into a delicious meal.
To exponentially expand the wild game menu, a cook must invest in a meat grinder. With it so many more opportunities open in the kitchen, from a simple venison burger, to chili, tacos, or stuffed peppers to name only a few. Many meat grinders on the market also come with sausage stuffing attachments, further expanding opportunities to different types of sausages, snack sticks, and wild game bolognas. They are a worthy investment, worth their weight in gold.
There are few bigger disappointments than seeing a forgotten, freezer burned package of wild game meat at the bottom of the freezer. Having a well-organized freezer ensures that this doesn’t happen. A vacuum sealer helps accomplish this goal, keeping that hard earned wild game organized and protected from freezer burn. Fill that freezer with confidence, knowing all that wild protein is well protected.
Enamel Coated Dutch Oven
Having a piece of equipment in the kitchen that not only helps prepare meals, but is also versatile so that it can be used in many different ways is a must have for any wild game cook. An enamel coated Dutch oven fits that bill. It can be used to braise tough cuts so their melt-in-your-mouth tender, simmer a flavorful wild game stew, or deep fry fish fillets to a perfect golden brown. I recommend the enamel coated Dutch oven because it is much easier to clean and maintain, and doesn’t require the necessary seasoning that an uncoated Dutch oven must have, while still providing the benefits of cast iron.
For a wild game cook to really up the ante in the kitchen, a smoker is essential. There are many different types of smokers available, all with their own benefits and draw backs. For a beginner, I would recommend a pellet smoker or electric smoker. Both are easy to operate, with almost a “set it and forget it” ease of use. The temperatures are very easy to manage and maintain, and they have the ability to smoke at lower temperatures.
Charcoal smokers are a little more difficult to use but can provide amazing meals with excellent smoke flavor. There is a learning curve when it comes to dialing in the temperature of a charcoal smoker, which can be frustrating at times. But, the time it takes to learn the process is a small price to pay for the amazing wild game dishes that can be created while using it.
Having deliciously prepared wild game meals is one of the main motives we take to the woods. This equipment helps elevate our hard earned protein. So get stocked up, get in the kitchen, and start cooking!