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Cooking Meat/Bad smell after cooking venison?


I've cooked venison on two different occasions with the same problem each time ,when first done everything tasted and the Oder was fine but after reheating there was a almost like a foam on top and a very bad smell. The first time was a venison stew all made with fresh venison and potatoes and vegetables , the second time was chili all with fresh ingredients the stew I used steak cut to size and chili was done with ground venison same bad smell each time ,is it the pot I'm using?am I simmering the food to long?plz help I don't like wasting my venison which takes a lot of effort to get from the woods to the freezer, the meat was used from two different deer and professionaly


Wanted to add this, one way to minimize the problem at least for chili is to brown the meat well and drain it very well, even pour boiling water over the cooked meat to remove as much fat as possible before adding it to the chili or whatever else you are using it in...I use venison in my meat spaghetti sauce too.

What you have here is butcher ruined meat.  I am assuming it is relatively fresh, and not been in the freezer for a year or more.

If you are using ground venison and the processor added beef suet, that is the culprit.  The beef suet or fat they use is the old hard heavy fat trimmed from beef carcasses.  It is very prone to go rancid.  While this is not a health risk when cooked, it adds a horrible odor and taste.  I know, been there and done that.  I used to have my deer processed in Oklahoma.  I did it once and the smell of the meat cooking was so bad I threw it out.  I recall when I dropped off the meat there were boxes of beef fat sitting under the counters.  They probably save the stuff up for months waiting for deer season.  Think about it for a second adding fat is free money for them.  They measure the weight of the venison trimmings (In my case I did not have the entire deer ground up) and you get X number of pounds of venison back, probably minus the pounds of fat they add, so you lose meat and get rancid fat in exchange.  Another thing, having worked in a meat plant, I can guarantee you that you don't bring home only YOUR venison, but part of someone elses too.  Why?  Because to them ground meat is ground meat.  They get all the trimmings run it through the grinder and then just run out X number of pounds for each person who had a deer processed.  Its like a factory and you cannot expect them to tear the machine down after each 10 lbs of meat.  Its done in batch.  So the meat from that young doe you shot may be mixed in with meat from the one brought in with the one with the leg blown up from the gunshot wound two weeks ago.

As I said, the meat probably has racid fat mixed in.  If you had the whole deer minus the backstrap ground up, you are hosed.  If not, cook some of the other meat and see if it is okay.  I personally never have it processed any more, but do it myself.  I skin the deer with the aid of a car or tractor, takes about 5-10 min tops. Hang it in the garage and bone it out.  It is actually pretty fun and educational.  Plus you get unadulterated meat.  The only drawback is you need a good high power grinder to grind up any meat, but you do have the opportunity to make jerky, boneless steaks, ribs etc.  Your problem has nothing to do with the cooking.  I have notices that I smell the same thing in some of the beef I get at the store too, they smell fine when first cooked, but cold or on reheating the fat smells awful.  It is the nasty heavy fat they are mixing in now, to maximize profits with the cost of beef so high.

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Keith Patton


I can answer questions regarding wildgame cookery ranging from venison, elk, buffalo, wild geese, duck, wild turtle, feral hog, javalena, wild boar, racoon, beaver, and woodchuck.


I am an avid hunter and chef. I have run a successful catering business, processing my own meat, curing hams and making wild game sausage.

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