Mid Season Waterfowl

The recent unseasonable warm temperatures presented me with another chance to get out waterfowling.  Having the opportunity to get out due to the weather was a small kindness considering the effect the temperatures has had on the recent deer season.  But, it pays to be positive and that is how I was seeing this warm weather this week.  Another chance to get out and take a crack at some waterfowl.

Typically, I focus my attention on four-legged creatures of the Cervid variety this time of year but after my buddy Dave had noticed a pile of birds near a spot we had been wanting to try, I was easily convinced to give up an early morning before work.  As an added bonus, temperatures had begun to dip slightly below zero in the evenings and early mornings which seems to have a positive effect on waterfowling.  So as we have done many time before, we made the short drive and 2 km paddle to the spot in question and began setting up our spread of decoys.  We had hoped to hunt this spot earlier in the year but had to change our plans due to another group of hunters who had got up just a bit earlier than us.  That’s just the nature of hunting on public land I guess.  Luckily this time around the place was deserted and we had our pick of the spots.


We chose a great spot on the eastern shore of the bay to take advantage of the east wind, anticipating the ducks would land into the wind and giving them the bulk of the bay for their approach.   For the first while though it seemed the only thing we could see were buffleheads or other divers.

DSC_0333(ii) DSC_0312DSC_0337(ii)

The action in our bay heated up a bit as numerous ducks started dropping in and around the far shore of the bay.  Among them was a pretty sizeable drake mallard who at first, didn’t seem interested in our setup despite our best efforts.  Eventually its curiosity got the better of him and he decided to do the zig-zag swim over to check us out.  I expect this was due to Dave’s persistent duck calling which manly consisted of dabbles with the odd call back sequence.  He made it to within the outer reach of the decoys and seemed to stall there warily inspecting our decoys.  I wasn’t going to give him an opportunity to figure out our ruse and after a couple shots and a few minutes later Dave had retrieved my very first bird of the day. How did it cook it? click to find out (Wild duck au poivre).


As is often the case when you get outdoors in southern Ontario we saw a plethora of wildlife that wasn’t on the menu.  Everything from Pileated Woodpeckers, a flock of tundra swans, snow geese, flocks of Canadian geese (one which landed just near our spread but a bit out of range) and of course a good variety of diving ducks which seem to make their way to our area later in the season.  All great to see and experience.


Unfortunately we missed an opportunity at another group of mallards and some redheads but with a few tweaks I’m confident we could increase our effectiveness drastically.  Even with the missed shots and small number of birds taken, I like to think success is not only measured in the game you bring home but the lessons you take with you as well.


And in this case, the lessons were many.

Like paying attention to these seasonal changes and to what other hunters are encountering can be very beneficial to the perceptive hunter. In this case the hunting pressure on water fowl in my local decreases sharply in mid November and coupled with a later migration due to temperatures ended up offering a great hunting opportunity.

Or how about learning to place your goose decoys a bit further from the main mallard spread (but still within range) in order to increase your chances of bringing geese into an effective range.  It seems geese don’t like to drop into a spread of mallards and will offset themselves.

Or don’t drop your guard just because you have bagged a bird.  Those tricky buggers can come out of nowhere and they don’t always see you despite how obvious you think you may be.

Despite the lessons learned from this outing and the bird harvested, the best part of the whole trip didn’t occur in the blind.  Instead it was getting to see the excitement of my 2.5 year old daughter when I brought home the mallard.  I didn’t even have a chance to get one word out and she came running over to see what I had brought home.  She immediately insisted on touching it all the while voicing her observations and making hilarious statements like “I don’t want to touch the beak.  Its weird” or “I want to go hunt ducks”.   You could see the interest and fascination in her eyes, vibrant and intense.  Start them young I always hear, and they will be interested for life.

Maybe that’s the real lesson here..

Cheers from the blind,


DSC_0380 (ii)





Deer Season 2015

Well Deer season has arrived and with it, plenty of opportunity for me to get out shooting.  Unfortunately the only shooting I was able to do was with my trusty Nikon.  Cue the dry, pitiful laughter.

This is a far cry from the banner year I had last year but a hunter can’t get lucky all the time.  Well, Unless your my friend (lets call him Big J) that is.  J seems to somehow put himself in the right place at the right time so he can harvest a deer almost every year.  Just like clock work, he managed to harvest a nice 6 point buck, the only deer our group was able harvest.

Im sure lots of factors played a part in our groups lack of success.  Maybe it was the 18 degree Celscius weather or maybe it was due to the lack of drawn doe tags in our group.  Either way, a week without a shot at a legal deer gives you lots of time to think.

Thankfully there was lots of other critters and some great scenery around to observe.  There is nothing like experience nature from the stillness of a deer watch.  If your good at it, the animals wont even know your there.

DSC_0006 DSC_0008 DSC_0011(ii) DSC_0019

DSC_0021 (ii)

All was not lost though.  Despite not shooting any deer I was still able to find a nice shed antler which served as a pretty sweet consolation prize.


The only buck of the week.  A nice 6 pointer with its brow tines broken off.  Good Job Big J!

DSC_0067(ii) DSC_0073(ii) DSC_0077(ii)DSC_0033(ii)

Cheers from the field,


Pre Deer Season Contemplations

Its October 26 on a Monday, a week before the opening day of deer season in south eastern Ontario and here I sit, anxiously awaiting for the week to pass.  Sitting at my laptop, I can’t think of a single thing to do aside from scour the internet in search of pictures of big bucks or to Oogle the aerial imagery for the property I will be hunting in a week.  As if either task could provide any more insight to me than the 100 hours or so I’ve already spent or could somehow make the week disappear quicker.

Restless would be a good descriptor of my current condition, anxious too, but definitely restless.   Restlessness that will only be worsened by the score of photos making the internet rounds from all those lucky SOBs who archery hunt and by the numerous trail cam pictures that seem to be attracted to my Facebook feed like a hunter to an outdoors store.  Its a steady build up all weeklong, finally reaching its peak the night before opener making the prospect of sleep a cruel joke.  I tell you, the whole thing is enough to drive any sane person crazy.  But I guess that’s a good thing in a way.  After all you have to be crazy to don the customary camo and blaze orange at an hour that is ridiculously earlier than necessary just to sit in your car at a parking lot that serves as a meeting point only to wait for the normal deer hunters to arrive at a more civilized hour, all the while trying to sip a hot drink with shaky hands and sleep deprived nerves.

Funny though, I’m usually not alone in that parking lot spilling my coffee and hovering over my gear like a mother over her new born.  I’m not just talking about my buddy whom I usually pick up either.  In fact, if someone had the inclination to get up that early and walk by the decidedly rural location where we hunt, they would likely see a cluster of red taillights breaking the early morning darkness.  They would likely see the occasional blaze orange vest and ghostly outline of a hunter illuminated by the taillights as he checked his gear.  They would see the miniscule dot of light from two to or three of my fellow hunters cigarettes as they rhythmically jumped from waist height to mouth height in a desperate attempt to pass the time.  Intrigued, they might even move closer to hear the chit chat between us about our regular lives, or maybe the anxious rattle of the dogs in their cages where they sit mounted on the back of an old pickup. They would hear the jokes and hear us exchange stories like they we were long lost brothers all the while watching the last few “normal” folks arrive….late.

In our specific case, some of these members of our crew are brothers.  In fact, most of the members are related making me the interloper who had only met them for the first time last year on opening day.  As intimidating as that sounds, not knowing them didn’t seem to matter all that much.  It didn’t matter when, the stranger to the group (me), broke our cold streak and took down the first deer of the season, and my first deer ever.  They were more than happy to lend several sets of very experienced hands to extract the animal from the bush and to assist with the hard work that followed.   They seemed delighted to share the hard earned knowledge they accumulated over a lifetime of hunting.  Happier still, were they to provide a squelchy chorus of congratulations over the two way radio for the hunter who had broke the cold streak that season and who had claimed a nice 8 point for his first.  No matter where each had come from, these folks were brothers in arms and it showed.  Fellow hunters in search of the same 14 point dream that draws each of us to wake up each year at ungodly hours in pursuit.  Fellow hunters who would be just as happy for a brother to bag a buck as they would be if they were the ones to pull the trigger. Well maybe not just as happy, but damn close.

But why do we do it? Simple.  Its eloquent and honourable (at least in our group), yet visceral and primal.  Its a truly real experience in an increasingly more digital world.  Its totally analog and soaked in history and tradition.  An experience worthy of kings and accessible by the lowliest poor schmuck.  And above all else, the outcome tastes fantastic in just about any dish imaginable.

In case you weren’t counting down for some strange reason, it’s only 6 days, 23 hours, 9 minutes away….


Cheers from my desk,


Duck Opener 2015 – Kingston

Duck season has arrived in Southern Ontario.  So just like many other crazed, sleep deprived hunters, Dave and I got up well before dawn to head out on the water to take part in the tradition.  This time around we had decided to try a new spot on the banks of the Rideau System.  Granted, Heading to a new spot on opening day is gamble, but we felt it was less so seeing as how we had done a fairly extensive online scouting and Dave had made a quick trip days before.  The spot look good.  Really, good.  There seemed to be shallow water around with a good section of weedlines and cattails for blinds.  Lots of open water nearby and good views for spotting incoming ducks.  Overall we liked our chances.

We arrived just as dawn was beginning to chase the night away only to be immediately dismayed with a number of other trucks and trailers parked at our access point.  Gamble made and lost…Apparently we weren’t the only ones who had noticed how good the spot looked.


But we aren’t ones to give up easy so we loaded the canoe with our decoys and gear and headed out to find a useable spot.  We noticed lots of activity in the areas we planned to hunt so we were forced to settle on a secondary location located in a small shallow bay facing south.   Duck hunting always seems to be filed with such a promise of action and today was no different, so regardless of the large number of hunters out there, our hopes remained high as we set up our decoys   Taking a page out of some recent articles I read, we also threw in a goose decoy just for confidence.  You never know when a lone honker will stop to see what’s going on with your spread.

Then we waited. And waited. And waited some more.  Bangs were going off all around us like the fourth of July but there just didn’t seem to be any birds near us that were in range.  I started to wonder if the folks around us were getting  little too liberal with judging weather or not a shot was makeable.  I can’t really blame them though, I seem to think I can shoot farther on opening day too…..

DSC_0075 DSC_0072

After tiring of the lack of useable action and hearing about 300$ worth of shells being shot around us we decided to take a walk around the property and do some scouting for future trips. We knew lots of birds were flying around and with the amount of shooting going on there had to be birds at lower elevations in and around more alluring locations.  As fate would have it, our luck changed and we stumbled upon a weedier section and even got a shot off at a fleeing duck we had stirred up.

We definitely took some lessons away from the hunt with regards to location and have a better idea how to position next time.

As a consolation prize, we came across a wide variety of animals that kept us amused during the lulls.  At one point I was seriously considering taking up squirrel hunting!



Possibly the best part of the trip was the forgeables we had stumbled upon.  Our blind was practically over grown with wild grapes and chokecherry bushes.  Not only are these fruits useful, they make great cover against wary waterfowl eyes.

The biggest surprise was the apples though.  There seemed to be trees upon trees covered in the delicious treat.  We picked and ate several while we hiked around the property and took a bunch back for apple sauce and jelly.

Apple tree DSC_0085 apples 1


Overall the day was enjoyable even if we weren’t bringing birds back with us. Often its just getting out that the most enjoyable part of it all.

Cheers from the blind



Wild Boars in Ontario

Ask any farmer or landowner from the southern United States and they will tell you feral pigs, otherwise know as the Eurasian Wild Pig are one of the biggest nuisances they face.  With populations at unprecedented levels and their presence being felt in 39 states (or more), these beasts terrorize farmers and landowners by destroying crops and rooting up land.  Simple put they are the definition of invasive.

So why discuss them on a blog centred around Southern Ontario?

It seems we too may soon have to deal with these invasive pests according to recent memorandum released by the Ministry of Natural Resources.  Apparently feral pigs have been spotted in the united counties of Prescott and Russell which are located east of Ottawa between Ottawa and Hawkesbury.  According to the memorandum, the MNR have authorized farmers and hunters to kill feral pigs under the authority of a small game licence (See a copy of the memorandum below).

All pertinent hunting rules and regulations regarding safety still remain in effect while hunting these animals and all kills or sighting should be reported to the ministry of natural resources at 1-800-667-1940. Those interested in more information on Wild boars in Ontario are also encouraged to contact the MNR.  In addition, “Wildboars in Canada” is a website dedicated to tracking sightings and encounters across the province.


Invasive species can be a problem for any ecosystem and those found in Ontario are no exception.  Do your part and report any sightings of feral pigs, or any other invasive species for that matter, to the MNR.





P.S (If you see one, don’t be afraid to leave a comment below or send an email.  I make a mean smoked bacon and I have no problems travelling!)



Deep River Adventures

Im lucky to have experienced quite a few hunting and fishing firsts this past year including tagging my first buck.  Thankfully this trend seems to be continuing into 2015 with the recent harvest of my first splake and snowshoe hare on a trip to some crown land near Deep River.

The trip was arranged though a friend (Oliver) and a work mate (Dave), with the destination being a land lease located near Deep River.  We had spent some of our fall grouse hunting trip installing insulation in the cabin and were excited to reap the rewards.  Not to mention, we would be joined on this trip by some of Oliver’s family and a friend of his named Hossam who was here from Saudi Arabia for work.  The hope for this trip was to tie into some splake on a small stocked lake located near the cabin (see my previous post to find stocked lakes  https://wildsofontario.com/2013/04/02/i-wonder-what-is-in-that-lake-fish-on-line-gis-tool/ ) and to give Hossam a truly Canadian experience in the process.  I’ve learned that the area near the cabin is riddled with trails and is home to an abundance of small game.  Knowing this I made sure to bring the Stoeger sxs 20ga in case an opportunity presented itself.

DSC_1864 (ii)

The trip began on a Friday afternoon where I met up with oliver’s family to head up together to the cabin.  Both Dave and Oliver, being the keeners they are, had already headed up Thursday night and already had a chance to test the waters for some splake.

We dove up highway 15 until we met up with Hossam near Arnprior.  After exchanging some introductions we packed up Hossam’s gear and got back on the road to finish the drive.  We arrived to the trail head which led to the camp late in the evening tired from the drive and ready to rest up for a big day of fishing the next morning.  Unfortunately the hard work had just began as we attempted to follow a foot trail into the cabin with the snowmobile in waist deep snow.  This is no easy task, especially when you have downed trees to contend with and tons of gear to haul.  Still, we made it to the cabin more or less intact and were happily surprised to see 4 decent splake which had been caught by Oliver and Dave during the day.  With visions of monster fish swimming in our heads, we nestled into our sleeping bags for the night.

Boy were we glad to have the old 340 Polaris to pull us and our gear around. 

The morning greeted us with -5 degrees Celsius, a picturesque sky dotted with clouds, and some delicious Arabic coffee and dates supplied by Hossam.  After a hearty breakfast and some of the most delicious coffee I’ve ever had, we loaded up our gear and headed back down the trail towards the vehicles and beyond to the stocked lakes.

DSC_1955 (ii)

The weather held for most of the day but was eventually replaced by a moderate snow storm near the evening.

DSC_1917 (ii)

We originally set our group up near where Dave and Oliver had caught the fish the previous day in 12 to 20 FOW.  Despite having six guys with lines in the water, fishing was slow throughout the day.  Both set lines with active minnows and jigging lines with tubes and spoons were used.

For those not familiar with Splake (Salvelinus namaycush X Salvelinus fontinalis), they are a hybridized species that are a cross between brook trout and lake trout.  Interestingly enough, the splake is a genetically stable hybrid and is capable of reproduction, however, reproduction is not common due to behavioural traits and the fish are considered behaviourally sterile.   For this reason, Splake are often stocked in many lakes throughout Ontario to create “put and take” fisheries. More information is available here https://www.ontario.ca/environment-and-energy/splake .

DSC_1898 (ii)

Although the fishing was slow for us, there was another group on the lake that seemed to be having the best luck they have ever had with multiple 5-7lb fish caught.  Interestingly enough, we noticed these folks were getting most of there fish in the deeper sections of the lake in about 35 FOW.

We adjusted our holes a bit and kept fishing until the early evening.  Suddenly, our lines lit up and we were marking hits on several of our lines. It seems the fish had moved from deeper water to the mid range and our 16 – 20 FOW lines were getting hit.

DSC_1906 (ii)

In the end I managed to catch my very first splake, albeit a tiny 10″ er.  Really nothing to write home about, however it was my first and I am happy for the chance at it.  Luckily I had an opportunity at a larger fish, however I misjudged its size and foolishly thought I could hand line it in.  Lesson learned.  Fish lost.

Humbled, and with thoughts of better opportunities for tomorrow, we packed the sled up and started the trek back to the camp.

The weather the following day was equally as nice as the previous and the sun seemed to warm up the woods.  As most rabbit hunters know (or so ive been told), rabbits like to sun themselves in these conditions, especially when they occur after long cold periods.  With this knowledge, a few of us strapped on our shotguns and proceeded down the trails in search of some elusive rabbits.

To be clear, I really didn’t know what the heck I was doing.  Lots of people have given me advice on how to target hoppers but I had yet to actually bag one.  regardless we carried on down the trails for quite a distance peering into the woods for a glance at a hopper.  Fresh tracks scattered around fallen logs and pine brush promised of action yet none had materialized.  I knew from some more experienced hunters that spotting rabbits on foot was very difficult this time of year since their fur becomes white and they camouflage well with the snowy backdrop.   Knowing this, I recalled a piece of advice I’ve received in the past: “don’t try to look for the rabbit cause they are too hard to see.  Try to spot the eyes and the ears instead”.  Both eyes and ears provide good contrast with the woods around.  With this in mind I focussed my attention on areas with fresh tracks hoping to spot the tell tale black dot or grey tuffs of hair.  Much to my delight I spotted a single black dot topped with a tuff of grey sitting still in a pool of sunlight about 25 yards back in the bush.  A perfect distance for the Stoeger coach gun.  I raised the barrel, beaded on the black dot, and took the shot.

DSC_1959 (ii)

Even with 7 1/2 shot, one shot was all it took.  As I approached to claim the rabbit, I immediately noticed the elongated back legs and the sheer length of the animal.  This was no puny cottontail, this was a full blown snowshoe hare.  My first.

DSC_1962 (ii) DSC_1960 (ii)

The rest of the day flew by in a blurr or residual excitement from harvesting my first hare.  Much of it was spent admiring the sheer beauty of the landscape in winter.  It seems each season in this area has its own special charm, and winter is no exception.  Talk between the group revolved around old hunting stories and we were all lucky enough to chat with Hossam about his hunting experiences in Saudi Arabia as they compare to Canada.

DSC_1885 (ii)

Early afternoon arrived and a few of us packed up our gear to head back to the city.  The weekend drew to a close and after a round of heartfelt goodbyes to the group that stayed behind, we started our drive back.

Once again another trip was complete with a great group of folks in some of the most beautiful wilderness around.  I’m very thankful to have friends such as these and even more thankful to have the opportunity to take hunt and fish in some of the best conditions Southern Ontario has to offer.

Cheers from the Wild


Venison Steak – Back to Basics

I am approaching the last of the venison from my first deer, taken last season.  With just a few packages of chops, a couple packages of burger, and two steaks left, I am trying to make the most of it.  With all the of possible recipes floating around in my head, I found it hard to decide what to do next.  Thankfully the time constraints of a busy life have forced me to make the practical decision and I settled on something that can easily  prepared on a weeknight.   Which recipe won out in the end?  The answer is a classic pan seared steak, paired with home fries and braised spinach.  Maybe just a few wild blackberries added for a garnish and give the dish an extra  wild element to the dish. Venison steak embodies the flavour of the venison at its most basic level.  No frills, no gimics.  Just pure, honest to goodness venny taste.   You will need: Venison steaks (back strap, hind or front quarter steaks, or even tenderloin if you so choose)

  • Montreal Steak Spice
  • Potatoes
  • Salt
  • Pepper,
  • Spinach
  • Garlic cloves
  • Oil or Butter

The recipe begins with trimming off the excess fat from the steaks and by coating them in the Montreal steak spice. The steak spice is optional, and can be substituted for salt and pepper. I like to dry my venison with a paper towel and let it rest in the spices for a few minutes prior to cooking.  Drying is key to an even cooking throughout and a good brown on the exterior while maintaining a medium to medium rare coking.


While the venison is drying I cubed the potatoes (the skin can be left on if desired).  Just like venison, you will get a better cooking and a crispier exterior if you dry the potatoes in a towel or paper towel.  Coat the potatoes in salt pepper or any other favourite homefry spice.  As an alternative, I like to use a dry rub meant for ribs to give them an extra kick http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/rib-dry-rub-recipe.html . Another favourite is a simple Olive oil, rosemary and kosher salt coating.  Both add an extra pezazz to the potatoe. Once seasoned, the potatoes go in to an oiled pan which has been brought to medium heat.  They are fried until golden brown and to the point where the potatoes can be easily penetrated with a fork. When the potatoes are nearly done, I heat up a separate pan to medium heat and add oil or butter.  Following that I add the steaks and cook to the appropriate cooking.  A couple tips:

1) venison retains a much better consistency at a medium or medium rare cooking.  Any more and it can become tough. Try this tip for gauging cooking http://www.simplyrecipes.com/recipes/the_finger_test_to_check_the_doneness_of_meat/

2) try to minimize the number of times you flip the steaks.  The steaks always seem to retain their moisture better when you limit it to one or two flips.


The last component of the meal was braised spinach.  I melted a bit of butter in a pan and added some minced garlic. Once soft, I add the spinach and a splash of lemon juice to the pan.  Cover and cook until soft.  Remember, the spinach will cook a bit even after removed from the heat so avoid the initial over cooking. DSC_0259DSC_0262 Extravagant meals may be great when time allows, but if your like me, your busy lifestyle demands a more practical approach throughout the week.  But that doesn’t mean that you have to sacrifice quality or taste, or the use of venison for that matter.  A quick pan seared venison steak fits the bill on all accounts and still allows for fancier interpretations if desired.

Cheers from my Kitchen


Antler Mount – A Lasting Tribute

Im not much of a trophy hunter.  In fact my biggest motivation for opening up my gun safe each year is culinary.  However, to complete the cycle and to honour my first deer I felt compelled to mount the horns.  This process has been taking me a while to complete, and still isn’t finished.  But, with the help of my father in law and his vast array of tools I am one step closer to a finished product.

DSC_0180 (2) Its important to remember the milestones in your life, and harvesting my first deer was definitely an important one for me.

Cheers from the work bench


Venison Longaniza

With the bustle of Christmas behind us, I found myself with a little bit of free time this past weekend.  Confronted with an empty stomach and the infinite possibilities of what to do on a blustery January day, I did what any hungry outdoorsman would do.  I busted out the ground venison and the old stainless steel manual grinder.  Yes, it was sausage time once again at my house and I was excited to try out a new recipe as well revisiting some old reliables.


After an intense internal debate on what to make I decided on two recipes; the first was a Mexican Chorizo (recipe courtesy of Micheal Rhulman and his book Charcuterie); and the second was a Spanish Longaniza posted by Hank Shaw on his website .

The Mexican chorizo was delicious and has been a favourite of mine for a while.  Orginally this recipes was designed for pork, however I found it will also accommodate a 50/50 pork venison split.  Suitable for adding to a soup, gumbo or even on its own, this sausage packs a flavourful punch with a bit of spicy kick.

Next was the Longaniza.  I was unfamiliar with this sausage and wasn’t sure what I was getting myself into with it.  And by unfamiliar, I mean I hadn’t even heard of it before, little own taste it.  Still, I was determined break some of my culinary boundaries and take my taste buds for a walk.  Besides, If I had to put blind trust in anyone’s culinary sense as it relates to wild game, Hank Shaw would be the guy.


(Nothing beats that rich red colour that stays with the meat from an Ontario whitetail deer)

Longaniza is a traditional Spanish sausage similar to a chorizo, however it has become prevalent in many countries cuisines such as Chile, Mexico, Puerto Rico and the Phillipines.  The exact recipe varies greatly between regions but I found the version posted by Hank Shaw to be delightfully flavourful with a delicious combination of Allspice, fresh rosemary and fresh green onions (The recipe can be found at: http://honest-food.net/wild-game/venison-recipes/burger-meatball-recipes/antelope-or-goat-longaniza-sausage/ )


For my version, I used 50% pork shoulder and 50% ground venison which turned out great, however I am confident this recipe could easily handle a 30% pork fat to 70% venison ration. I made a few minor tweaks to the seasoning that included substituting the sweet paprika for regular paprika with a tea spoon of sugar, using a home made merlot for the wine, and using crushed dried rosemary which I harvested from my garden this year.  I reduced the rosemary to 1.5 Tablespoons of dried versus the 25 grams of fresh that is called for in the recipe.


The final product surprised me in its strength of flavour and complexity with the major tastes of the rosemary and allspice being supported by the rest of the ingredients.

I had decided to make this sausage on a whim with no real expectations but ended up striking gold in the flavour department.

I was impressed.  I was so impressed by the taste, I decided to save a bit of the mixture to form into patties for some sandwiches served at diner that day.  A little bit of Jalapeño Havarti on a ciabatta bun and dinner was served.


Accompanied by a spicy vegetable and venison chorizo soup, the meal was extremely satisfying.

I had this idea in my head that trying new venison recipes was a gamble.  These pre-conceived notions are likely directly related to some poorly butchered meat I had in the past.  All it takes is one bad experience to riddle you with inhibitions, especially when it comes to food.

I am happy to say I no longer buy into this view, ever since I started working with my first deer which I harvested last year.  What made the difference? My deer was taken quickly with one shot, the meat was cared for and butcher appropriately, and the resulting product was far superior to any I had worked with in the past.  The key here is to start with quality if you expect quality.  Its seems after a few resounding successes with my goulashSalisbury steak and now the Longaniza, the restrictors are off and it seems Im ready to put venison in just about anything.

Cheers from my Kitchen