We love seeing and hearing about all of our happy Traeger owners who are using their grills to cook wild game. One of the most popular (and delicious) ways of preparing wild game like elk or venison is to make jerky. It just makes sense, typically after a hunt there is a lot of meat and making jerky can extend the shelf life of your animal. Use a couple of Traeger smoke shelves and you are set to smoke up a big batch of the best jerky you've ever had. It is important to note that pretty much any recipe in Traeger's Jerky Cookbook can be used with wild game. We love the salty sweet teriyaki marinade with venison so we are featuring that one for you today, but feel free to explore and experiment. With a Traeger, it will be delicious no matter what recipe you use!
Teriyaki Venison Jerky
Pellet Recommendation: Apple, Cherry, Oak
• 1/2 cup soy sauce
• 1/4 cup mirin or sweet cooking wine
• 2 tablespoons sugar
• 3 “coins” of fresh ginger (each about 1/4-inch thick), or 2 teaspoons of powdered ginger
• 1 garlic clove, crushed
• 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
• 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
• 2 pounds trimmed venison
In a mixing bowl, combine the soy sauce, mirin, sugar, ginger, garlic, onion powder, and pepper.
With a sharp knife, slice the beef into 1/4-inch thick slices. (This is easier if the meat is partially frozen.) Slicing with the grain of the meat will result in long strands of jerky that have more of a "tear and pull" texture while slicing against the grain will give you a softer, chewier jerky. Trim any fat or connective tissue.
Put the beef slices in a large resealable plastic bag. Pour the marinade mixture over the beef, and massage the bag so that all the slices get coated with the marinade. Seal the bag and refrigerate for several hours, or overnight.
When ready to cook, start the Traeger grill on Smoke with the lid open until the fire is established (4 to 5 minutes). Remove the beef from the marinade and discard the marinade. Dry the beef slices between paper towels. Arrange the meat in a single layer directly on the grill grate.
Smoke for 4 to 5 hours, or until the jerky is dry but still chewy and somewhat pliant when you bend a piece.
Transfer to a resealable plastic bag while the jerky’s still warm. Let the jerky rest for an hour at room temperature. Squeeze any air from the bag, and refrigerate the jerky. It will keep for several weeks.