FIELD TO TABLE
Processing and cooking your wild harvest
Gutless Field Dressing
Field dressing is removing the internal organs of hunted game, and is a necessary step in preserving meat from animals harvested in the wild. In order to ensure rapid body heat loss (cooling of the meat), and prevent bacteria from growing on the surface of the carcass, field dressing must be done as soon as possible. Field dressing helps maintain the overall quality of the meat. It also makes it considerably easier for a hunter to carry larger game from the hunt area (drag out or pack out), we’ll get to that later.
Over the last few years, the field dressing process known as the Gutless Method has become increasingly popular. There are two primary reasons for its popularity – it saves time, and it saves a mess. The Gutless Method allows a hunter to completely break down an animal without ever opening the body cavity. This can save 10-15 minutes (or more), as well as keep the fresh meat from being exposed to the internal organs (i.e., guts). Using this method, every scrap of edible meat is still salvaged from the animal. Here is a quick breakdown of the Gutless Method: The gutless method involves skinning the animal and cutting the leg quarters and boneless meat without removing the internal organs.
Removing the Hide on one side of the animal
Removing the Rear and Front Quarters plus neck meat
Removing the Backstraps
Removing the Tenderloins, Rib meat and more neck meat
Continued neck meat removal and skull removal
Wild Harvest Recipes
Bone broth is an amazing liquid. Full of essential nutrients it has been used to alleviate colds and boost immunity for centuries. It also allows us to use the entire animal, nose to tail and not let any of it go to waste. Note: you’ll need a pressure canner or ample freezer space to store the broth. Here is a simple recipe from the Rustic Elk.
Sweet and Sour Antelope Meatballs
One of our tried and true favorite antelope (aka, pronghorn) recipes by Harvesting Nature. The hardest part about this recipe is harvesting the Antelope!
Other Resources we recommend
The Beginning Guide to Hunting Deer for Food by Jackson Landers