Are you looking for a way to make the most out of your venison heart? Look no further!
Freezing venison heart is a great way to preserve this delicious and nutritious organ meat for later use. But how do you properly clean and prepare the heart for freezing?
In this article, we’ll walk you through the steps to clean and prepare venison heart for freezing, as well as provide tips on how to properly store it. Whether you’re an experienced hunter or just looking to try something new, freezing venison heart is a great way to add variety to your meals and make the most out of your harvest.
So let’s get started!
Can You Freeze Venison Heart?
Yes, you can freeze venison heart! Freezing is a great way to preserve the heart for later use and ensure that it stays fresh and delicious. However, before freezing the heart, it’s important to properly clean and prepare it.
Why Freeze Venison Heart?
Freezing venison heart is a great way to extend its shelf life and ensure that it stays fresh and tasty for longer. By vacuum sealing the heart in serving size portions, you can easily take out what you need for a meal without worrying about the rest going bad. This is especially helpful if you don’t plan on using the entire heart at once, or if you want to save some for a later date.
In addition to its convenience, freezing venison heart can also help to tenderize the meat. When meat is frozen, the water inside the cells expands and forms ice crystals. These ice crystals can pierce the cell walls, which can cause the meat to become more tender when it’s cooked. This is especially beneficial for tougher cuts of meat, like the heart.
To freeze venison heart, start by cleaning and preparing it as described in the article above. Once it’s ready, slice it into strips and place them on wax paper or silicone baking mats on a baking sheet. Freeze them until they are solid, then vacuum seal them in serving size portions. This will help to prevent freezer burn and ensure that the heart stays fresh and delicious.
When you’re ready to use the frozen venison heart, simply thaw it in the refrigerator overnight or under cold running water. Then cook it as desired, whether that’s frying it up or using it in a recipe like liver and onions.
Cleaning And Preparing The Heart For Freezing
Cleaning and preparing the heart for freezing is crucial to ensure that it stays fresh and tasty when you’re ready to use it. First, remove any membranes surrounding the organ, which should be easy to peel. Then, trim off the top portion of the heart where visible blood vessels enter. On the outside of the heart, trim off any whitish areas of fat. Next, cut the heart open to remove blood vessels. The aorta is large, easily visible, and fairly easy to remove. Also take out any smaller, spidery vessels.
Once trimming is complete, rinse the heart well under cold water to remove any remaining blood. You can also submerge and squeeze it several times to pump out any remaining blood. After rinsing, thoroughly dry the heart using paper towels or a clean cloth.
If you’re planning on freezing the heart for later use, place it in a zip-close bag and store it in the freezer. Make sure to label the bag with the date so you can keep track of how long it’s been frozen. When you’re ready to use the heart, simply thaw it in the refrigerator overnight before cooking.
It’s important to note that if you want to use the heart for recipes immediately after removing it from the freezer, you can skip the apple cider vinegar soak mentioned in some of the above sources. However, if you want more tender meat and want to eliminate any strong odors associated with organ cuts, soaking the heart in a mixture of water and apple cider vinegar before freezing is recommended.
How To Properly Store Frozen Venison Heart
Properly storing frozen venison heart is key to maintaining its quality and flavor. Before freezing, make sure the heart is cleaned and trimmed of any excess fat, veins, and connective tissue. Once cleaned, wrap the heart tightly in plastic wrap or aluminum foil to prevent freezer burn. Then, place the wrapped heart in a heavy-duty freezer bag or airtight container.
It’s important to label the package with the date and cut of the heart, as well as any other relevant information such as the location where the deer was harvested. This will help you keep track of how long the heart has been frozen and ensure that you use it before it loses its quality.
When storing frozen venison heart, make sure to keep it in the coldest part of your freezer, away from the door where temperatures can fluctuate. The heart can be stored in the freezer for 9-12 months, but it’s best to use it within 6 months for optimal flavor and texture.
When thawing frozen venison heart, it’s important to do so slowly and safely. The best way to thaw venison heart is to place it in the refrigerator for 2-3 days before cooking. If you’re in a hurry, you can also thaw the heart by submerging it in cool water, changing the water every 30 minutes. Never thaw venison heart at room temperature or in hot water as this can lead to bacterial growth and foodborne illness.
Creative Ways To Use Frozen Venison Heart In Your Meals
Venison heart is a versatile and flavorful meat that can be used in a variety of dishes. Here are some creative ways to use frozen venison heart in your meals:
1. Pan-fried Venison Heart: This is a simple and delicious way to enjoy venison heart. After thawing the frozen heart, clean and trim it, then slice it into small pieces. Season with salt and pepper, and pan-fry the slices until they are browned and crispy. Serve with your favorite sides for a tasty and nutritious meal.
2. Venison Heart Bolognese: This is a great way to introduce people to eating heart if they’re on the fence about eating it medium rare, or in large pieces. Grind the thawed heart using a meat grinder, then add vegetables, belly or pancetta for added flavor and fat. Simmer for a few hours until the mixture becomes a rich and flavorful sauce. Serve over pasta for a hearty and satisfying meal.
3. Venison Heart Jerky: Venison heart makes excellent jerky that is high in protein and low in fat. After thawing the frozen heart, clean and trim it, then slice it into thin strips. Marinate the strips in your favorite jerky seasoning for several hours or overnight, then dehydrate them until they are dry and chewy. Store the jerky in an airtight container for a tasty and convenient snack.
4. Venison Heart Stew: Venison heart adds rich flavor and nutrition to any stew recipe. After thawing the frozen heart, clean and trim it, then cut it into small pieces. Brown the pieces in a skillet, then add them to your favorite stew recipe along with vegetables and broth. Simmer until the meat is tender and the flavors have melded together.
5. Venison Heart Tacos: Venison heart makes delicious and unique taco filling that is sure to impress your guests. After thawing the frozen heart, clean and trim it, then slice it into small pieces. Season with taco seasoning or your favorite spices, then pan-fry until browned and crispy. Serve with tortillas, salsa, cheese, and other toppings for a fun and flavorful meal.
Nutritional Benefits Of Venison Heart
Venison heart is a highly nutritious food that offers numerous health benefits. It is an excellent source of protein, containing all the essential amino acids necessary for the body’s growth and repair. In addition, venison heart is high in iron, zinc, selenium, and vitamins B2, B6, and B12. These essential minerals and vitamins help to keep the body functioning smoothly by supporting cell growth, immune system health, thyroid gland health, blood circulation, and more.
Venison heart also contains CoQ10, an antioxidant that is essential for the health of human tissues and organs. CoQ10 helps to protect the body from damage caused by harmful molecules called free radicals. It also plays a vital role in energy production and supports the immune system.
Moreover, venison heart is low in fat and calories compared to other common meats. It is also rich in monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats, which are beneficial for heart health. The high protein content of venison heart makes it an excellent food choice for people with cardiovascular disease.