Grit Blogs > Arrows and Minnows

New Deer Jerky Experiment with Clem's Seasonings on Tap

By Caleb Regan, Managing Editor

Tags: game, cooking, venison, meat, jerky,

A portrait of GRIT Assistant Editor Caleb Regan, with a puny catch.Since shooting a deer around Thanksgiving, I’ve been eating a lot of venison, and now I can’t wait to try to make my own deer jerky. Be it tenderloin, deer chops or some other cut, the meat has all been incredibly tender and tasty. Being an antler guy, I’d trade it all for a huge rack on the wall, but the quality of the meat from the young buck I took makes me wholeheartedly thankful nonetheless.

When it comes to fish and game, I love to cook it. It’s a great feeling to grill or fry up some game or fish that I’ve harvested myself and share it with the people I love, especially when they like it. I recently asked my fiance to be my wife over masterfully done backstraps, baked potatoes and sweet corn. I only say masterfully done because it worked, so I'll have faith in that meal for some time to come.

Backstraps with baked potato and sweet corn.

From time to time, I hear people talk about how they don’t like venison, or fresh fish, and I can’t help but think, Well, you’ve never had the backstraps from a doe, or, you’ve never had a crappie fillet in the spring. Cooking good fish and game is something I take great pride in – most of all because in my mind it substantiates my belief that I don’t hunt or fish only because I love the actual hunt. I also love the outcome, the practical use and sustenance I get from the animal I’m after. Making it taste good is a big part of the provident feeling.

So when an advertiser brought over some Clem's Seasonings samples, I immediately knew I had some ground venison in my freezer that has Clem’s name on it. I even got a drying rack. The seasoning itself is rather inexpensive; you can season 15 pounds of meat using one seasoning packet that sells for $6. Drying screens are also affordable; around $5 per screen.

Honestly, I’ve been searching for an easy jerky-making process for some years, both for beef jerky and deer jerky, and I hope this is it. I’ll let you know how it turns out. Anybody have a favorite already? Or has anyone tried Clem’s in the past?

Caleb Regan and his wife, Gwen, live in rural Douglas County, Kansas, where they enjoy hunting, fishing, and raising and growing as much of their own food as they can. Caleb can’t imagine a better scenario than getting to work on a rural lifestyle magazine as a profession, and then living that same lifestyle right in the heartland of America. Connect with him on .