Cooking Wild Game

Cooking Wild Game - Pan Seared Jack Daniel's Marinated Quail

Greetings Everyone:

This newsletter is for anyone wanting the secret to cooking wild game! You will never again have gamey tasting meat! Trust me and keep reading!

Featured Recipes Are:

Chef Lisa Freeman is every man’s dream! She knows how to cook all types of wild game and since 2002, has been the executive chef for NASCAR, Inc. TOLD YOU!

She was born and raised in Linden, a small farming community in the San Joaquin Valley. Her grandfather, George Di Carlo, emigrated from Sicily to California where he began farming and eventually went into the restaurant business. Orval Freeman, her paternal grandfather, raised livestock. It was only natural that she gained an appreciation for seasonally harvested produce, freshly made cream, homemade butter, and free-range eggs.

Lisa specializes in outdoor cooking. She recently co-authored her first cookbook The Hunter’s Table, for Ducks Unlimited.

Lisa is also a spokesperson for Bozzano Olive Oils. Fourth generation California farmers, the Bozzanos of Stockton have been producing award-winning, certified extra virgin olive oils since 2007.

She cooked with 3 of the new harvest extra virgin olive oils. The A2 grassy blend of Ascolano and Arbequina olives, Toscana, fruity, floral blend of Frantoio, Leccino, and Pendolino olives and the single variety Coratina, a versatile and fruity oil. You can order these olive oils online at

Before we get started with the delicious recipes, let me give you the big secret to never having gamey tasting meat again! Cleaned and trimmed meat completely FREE of all fat and silver sinew. Did you get that? Make sure there are no fat pockets anywhere on the meat! Marbled meat is different from fat pockets.

Pan Seared Jack Daniel’s Marinated Quail

Cooking Wild Game - Pan Seared Jack Daniel's Marinated Quail

One dozen quail, quartered, semi-boneless (legs cut off and cooked separately – see below) OR four to six duck breast halves, boneless.


  • 3 tbsp. + 1/4 cup Bozzano Ranch extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 tbsp. fresh garlic, minced fine
  • 1 tbsp. fresh sage, chopped fine
  • 2 tsp. fresh thyme, chopped fine
  • 1 tsp. fresh ginger, minced
  • (If fresh herbs are not available, you may substitute with dried reduce amount by half)

  • 2 tbsp. fresh Italian flat leaf parsley, chopped fine
  • 6 oz. teriyaki sauce
  • 1 tbsp. brown sugar
  • 3 oz. Jack Daniels (or just a splash more for good measure!!)
  • salt and fresh ground pepper

Mix 3 tbsp. olive oil and the remaining marinade ingredients together into a medium bowl. Add to birds and toss until evenly coated. Cover and place into refrigerator. Let marinate two to four hours.

Now, get your saute pan hot and ready. Add the 1/4 cup olive oil to the pan and heat. Cook on each side about 2 1/2 to 3 minutes, (for quail legs, cook just slightly longer) or until rare to medium rare. DO NOT OVERCOOK! Remove the quail from the grill and let them rest for a minute. For duck breasts slice on the bias and serve.

This marinade is also good on dove, pheasant and goose.

Wild Boar with Fig and Port Wine Reduction

I was a little nervous about eating this feral hog. I will have to say that it was tender, very flavorful and no gamey taste what-so-ever! Delicious!

Cooking Wild Game - Wild Boar with Fig and Port Wine Reduction

  • One, 3-pound boneless wild boar loin, sliced into medallions about 1/4 inch thick
  • 3/4 cup Bozzano extra virgin olive oil (Lisa used the Toscana Olive Oil)
  • 1 cup all purpose flour for dredging boar
  • 1/2 cup yellow onion, small dice
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 2 cups port wine
  • 1 to 2 Serrano peppers, minced
  • 1 cup fig preserves
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper

Lightly dredge and dust the boar slices, season with salt and pepper and set aside for a few minutes.

Heat large saute pan over medium high heat. Add about 1/2 the olive oil to the pan. When oil is hot, begin cooking the boar by laying the slices spread about out in the pan. Sear on each side until golden brown. (You may need to work in batches cooking the meat, so that the meat will crust and not steam.)

Remove meat from pan, set aside in a warm area on a plate while you complete cooking the meat. Repeat the above step for second batch of meat.

De-glaze (means to stir a liquid in a pan to dissolve cooked food particles remaining on the bottom) the pan with the port wine. Add the yellow onions and cook until tender and begins to caramelize. Add peppers and garlic. Saute for another minute. Add the fig preserve and reduce until mixture becomes slightly syrupy. Drizzle over the boar and serve immediately.

Peppercorn Encrusted Venison with a Sage and Dijon Cream Sauce

This venison tasted just like a filet mignon! No gamey taste at all! It was fabulous!

Cooking Wild Game - Peppercorn Encrusted Venison

  • Four, 10 oz. medallion portions of venison tenderloin or back strap, cleaned and trimmed completely free of all fat and silver sinew
  • 1/2 cup cracked or crushed black pepper corns
  • 1 + 3 Tbsp. Bozzano extra virgin olive oil (Lisa used Coratina)
  • 2 Tbsp. fresh shallots minced
  • 1 tsp. fresh sage, finely minced
  • 1/2 cup Chardonnay wine
  • 1/2 cup chicken stock (salt free)
  • 1 + 2 Tbsp. Dijon mustard
  • 3/4 cup heavy cream
  • 2 tsp. fresh Italian flat leaf parsley, minced
  • Sea salt or kosher salt

Season the meat with salt. Apply a thin layer of Dijon mustard to one side of each fallow deer portion.

Place peppercorns onto a plate. Press the peppercorns onto the mustard side of the meat until they stick. Set aside.

Heat 3 tbsp. olive oil in a large saute pan over medium high heat. When oil is hot, but not smoking, place deer meat into pan. You should hear a nice sizzle when the meat goes into the pan.

Sear each side and cook until rare or medium rare. (DO NOT OVERCOOK!)

Remove the meat from the pan, lightly tent with foil, and set aside. Do not remove the pan drippings.

Return the pan to heat and add the shallots and saute for about 1 minute. Add a touch of oil if necessary to pan. Add the sage and saute quickly. Add the Chardonnay. When the wine is reduced by half, add the remaining Dijon mustard and chicken stock, rude and add the whipping cream. Reduce until desired thickness.

Add the parsley at the last, saute quickly and remove from heat. Serve over the fallow deer medallions.

WINE PAIRING: A natural pairing for this recipe would be an earthy Cabernet Sauvignon with hints of peppercorn. However, since a buttery chardonnay is used as an ingredient in this recipe, it creates a bridge for the same chardonnay as a perfect pairing to the dish as well. It is a matter of personal preference and finding the balance that will enhance the complementing flavors.

I hope you all enjoy these recipes for wild game from chef Lisa Freeman and that you will cook your wild game at home! REMEMBER the key to cooking wild game is to clean all the fat off! The fat is what makes it taste gamey!

Lisa says she cleans all of her wild game and vacuum packs it and then freezes it. She says that way, it is ready to cook once it thaws out!

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