With a Tomato-Apple Sauce
Another father there, also named Mark, was very enthusiastic about Dutch ovening, and he and I got to talking about game meats. He’s an avid hunter, and I have relatively little experience cooking wild game. I got a lot of good ideas and tips from him, and we had a lot of fun talking together.
So, when I came back, I remembered that I had a few pounds of ground game. It had been given to us by my sister-in-law. It was wrapped, but unlabeled in our freezer. I suspect it was elk, but I’m not certain. I wracked my brain trying to think of something to do with it, and after some research, I settled on a few meatloaf recipes to blend together.
If an animal has been field-dressed well, it will go a long way toward removing the “gaminess” of the flavor. Acids and herbs can do much for that as well. There are plenty of both in this recipe, both in the meat and the sauce.
12” Dutch oven
10-12 coals below
18-24 coals above
8” Dutch oven
10-12 coals below
2 pounds ground venison
2 large eggs
2 8 oz cans tomato sauce
1 medium onion, finely chopped
1 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
2-3 tablespoons mustard
2-3 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
Liberal sprinklings of:
Not so liberal sprinklings of:
2-3 large potatoes, quartered and sliced
~1/4 cup juices from the meat
3 small apples, peeled and grated
6 ounces tomato paste
1 small onion, diced
2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
2 teaspoons paprika
2 teaspoons cinnamon
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper.
After thawing the meat in the fridge overnight, I started, as I usually do, by lighting up some coals and letting them get a bit white.
The meatloaf was actually very easy to make. I simply mixed everything up in a bowl (except the potatoes). Then I spread it around in the Dutch oven. It was originally my intention to make a loaf mound of meat in the middle of the Dutch oven, and then to scatter the potato bits around it to fill it in. However, I think I actually had closer to 3 pounds of meat, so I was able to cover the whole dutch oven with some depth. So, I just tossed the potatoes evenly over the top.
It baked for probably about an hour before the internal temperature read 150. Really, it’s fine if it goes over that.
Finally, it was all done. I let it cool and rest for about 15 minutes, and served it up with the sauce drizzled across the top! It was delicious!
Mark has discovered a love of Dutch Oven Cooking. Mark also has other sites and blogs, including MarkHansenMusic.com and his MoBoy blog.