“There’s venison in my freezer!” That was the statement my sister greeted me with as, one Sunday afternoon, I made an impromptu stop at her apartment. Her roommate, coming from upstate New York, had brought some of the meat back with her after her last trip home and subsequently stocked the freezer. My sister was both excited and terrified (our childhood meat consumption had been as suburban as Leave It to Beaver, consisting largely of chicken and . . . chicken). So the next time I spoke with her, I was quick to ask about the apartment’s venison adventures. They’d eaten it, not only surviving but enjoying the meal. And as they had, they had unknowingly consumed one of the more healthy meats.
Venison is, like beef, high in protein and iron. One serving will provide you with 68.5 percent of your daily protein and 28.2 percent of your daily iron. However unlike beef, venison is not loaded with fat or calories. In fact, that same serving will set you back only 179 calories and feed you a limited amount of saturated fat. Meanwhile, you’ll ingest a healthy dose of vitamins B12 and B6, as well as niacin and riboflavin. You’ll be combating osteoarthritis, migraines and certain heart diseases with just one piece. And you’ll be satisfying your love of meat, a passion that usually leaves you guilt-ridden and concerned for your life, in a leaner way.
Since deer-hunting season has only recently ended, I’m sure, if you’re a hunter or know one, that there are few pounds of venison in your freezer. Use it within nine to 12 months, thawing it only once before consumption. When you cook it, heat it to at least 155 degrees, but be careful not to overcook it. If you prepare it correctly, you’ll have a main dish with a full, deep taste and soft, tender texture.�