We are already into the second week of Manitoba’s general deer season, and many amazing whitetails have already been tagged. In today’s HuntFishMB Recipes segment, we are going to jump right into another “how-to” deer processing video with Josh McFaddin. In this video, Josh shows you how to remove a deer backstrap with each step carefully explained to ensure you get it exactly right at home. Upon removing the strap, Josh then showcases how to trim up this beautiful cut of meat so it is ready for smoker, BBQ or frying pan!
The full video can be found below! Following that is a great write-up by Josh of exactly how it’s done and his favourite methods for cooking it up! Enjoy!
How to Remove a Deer Backstrap: Tips, Tricks, and Recipes
From the base of the neck to the top of the hip; The backstrap is widely known as every hunter’s favourite chunk of meat. Even if you’re new to hunting, you’ve heard other hunters make mention of this cut and all of the various favoured preparation methods which usually include butter and bacon and a deep appreciation for the cut.
Ways to Cook a Deer Backstrap
My appreciation for this long and rather large cut of meat comes from many years of building memories through the harvesting process and experimenting with inventive ways to use it. I’ve left them attached to the ribs and have made chops, which are great. I’ve rolled them, stuffed them, made tartare with them, seared them, grilled them, tied them and even deep-fried them. The best thing about them is that there’s a lot to go around, so try new things.
How to Cook a Deer Backstrap
The only thing I will tell you to do is, cook them rare! I’d even let medium rare slide, but, just don’t cook any venison steak beyond that point. We are talking about extremely lean meat here. The thin line between juicy and dry is growing thinner every day. So get yourself a good thermometer. No matter how you choose to cook it, keep tabs on the internal temperature and pull it off the heat at 120F for a juicy steak and up to 135F. Then let it rest for ten minutes before slicing into it, otherwise, all your hard work will bleed out on the cutting board.
Removing a Deer Backstrap
Okay, so let’s address the backstrap removal technique. I like to have the deer hanging for this. However, I have also removed plenty, in the field, from the ground. For this case, let’s pretend that you have your deer hanging as I have in the video. Your deer can be hung from either the back legs or the head, you’ll just start from the back of the neck or the top of the hip, whatever side is pointing up.
Start by removing all of the layers of fat and tissue that cover the backstrap in order to expose it. Pick a side and make a cut, parallel to the floor, all the way across the top of the backstrap and as tight to the top of it as you can. Then, work your knife along either side, working downward, in order to detach the muscle from the side of the spine and the top of the ribs.
On the underside, where the ribs are, you’ll want to almost use a scooping motion as you slide your blade over the top of the ribs, this will make it easier in leading your knife around the curved bone. As muscle starts to be cut away from the bone, gravity will lend a hand in pulling the backstrap downward naturally and away from the deer. When you get to the bottom, make another cross-cut, parallel to the floor and fully detach.
Trimming a Deer Backstrap
After removing the strap, the next step is to get trim it up. On a table, using a sharp knife, slide it carefully under the silverskin as you lift it away from the meat with your other hand. Trim off any excess fat or silverskin the best you can and it’s ready to enjoy or vacuum pack for another day.
And there you have it! How to remove a deer tenderloin! I have also created a couple of other DIY deer processing videos, If you are interested in how to remove a deer tenderloin Click Here. If you would like to learn how to debone a deer hind quarter, Click Here, and stay tuned real soon for a video on how to debone the deer shoulder blade! Good luck out there!