Sushi Rice

If you found your way to this post because of my column in Salmon, Trout, Steelheader Magazine, thank you for being a loyal reader! 

This is my shortcut method of making sushi rice. It doesn’t hold a candle to the rice you will find that is made by professionals but my family has been enjoying this for years.

For a small batch, use 2 cups uncooked rice and have 1/3 cup seasoned rice vinegar on hand. Recipe doubles and triples well. You will need 4-6 sheets of nori.

Cook rice according to package or rice cooker instructions.  While rice is still hot, add seasoned rice vinegar, stirring gently but thoroughly.  Spread rice in a shallow dish to cool. Layer damp paper towels or a damp, clean dish towel on top of the rice to prevent it from drying out. Serve as is with your favorite toppings or spoon on to nori, spreading evenly to coat entire sheet (leave approximately 1/4″ uncovered on both ends).  Place any fillings down the middle of the rice layer if desired.  Roll nori up, squeezing firmly by hand or with a bamboo sushi mat.  Set aside and repeat with another roll.  Using a sharp, moist knife, slice in desired serving pieces.  Serve with cured salmon eggs, pickled ginger, wasabi, black sesame seeds & soy sauce if desired. Makes 4-6 rolls.

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White Chili

If you just caught my seminar at the Willamette Sportsman Show, thanks so much for coming! One of the best parts of my job is teaching cooking seminars. This recipe was developed in 2011 for the O’Loughlin Trade Shows in their Camp Cooking seminars. Hundreds of seminar attendees and sport show vendors sampled this chili and the reviews were fantastic. This can be made with ground or chopped pork, wild boar, wild turkey or any upland game bird. We like it so much it’s the first recipe in our book, Cooking Game Birds. Order the book now and I will send you a free, Plank It! Wrap It! cookbook (valued at 9.95).

White Chili

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 cup onion, diced
  • 4-6 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 pounds pork or turkey, ground or finely chopped
  • 2 teaspoons oregano
  • 2 teaspoons cumin
  • 1/2-1 teaspoon red chili flakes
  • 2 7-ounce cans diced green chilies
  • 1 tablespoon green Tabasco sauce
  • 6 cups turkey/chicken stock or broth
  • 3 15-ounce cans cannellini or white beans
  • 1 cup instant or real mashed potatoes
  • Salt & pepper to taste
  • Juice of 1 lime

In a large pot, saute onion and garlic in olive oil on medium heat, 2-3 minutes.  Add turkey and seasonings, sauteing an additional 5 minutes.  Add remaining ingredients, except lime juice, and simmer at least 30 minutes.  Remove from heat, add lime juice and serve.

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Go Go Bars

From my book, The Power of Flour, this recipe ran in the Alaska Sporting Journal, September 2017.

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Corned Ducks & Geese

Traditional Corned Duck boiled up with potatoes, carrots and cabbage.

“How do you make shovelers taste good?” is a question I am often asked. Some waterfowl species have challenged me over the years and I am very thankful we usually have dozens of birds in a season for recipe development. The last few years I have had great luck with corning all kinds of ducks and geese. Once the birds have been corned (brined 5-10 days) they are ready to boil, fry, slow cook or smoke for pastrami. When we bring home large quantities of birds it’s easy to remove the breasts and toss them all in a brine while filling the slow cooker up with legs and thighs to use for dinners all week. You may want to start out with a small batch to see how you like this method and then double or triple the recipe next time.

Corned Waterfowl

  • 2 pounds whole duck breasts
  • 1 quart water
  • 2 tablespoons Morton Tenderquick
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon pickling spices
  • 1 teaspoon fresh ground black pepepr
  • 1 teaspoon granulated garlic

In a glass or plastic bowl, whisk dry ingredients with water until sugar is dissolved. Clean duck breasts of all silverskin and inspect for shot. Place duck breasts in brine. Cover and refrigerate 5-10 days stirring at least once a day.

There are a variety of ways corned duck can be cooked. Slow cook in a crock pot on high heat 2 hours or until duck reaches desired tenderness. Thinly slice duck and sauté on high heat in a stir fry with olive or coconut oil. Boil whole breasts 10-15 minutes, slice and serve with fried cabbage and potatoes. For duck pastrami, smoke 3-4 hours between 180º-200º (or until duck reaches an internal temperature of 140º).

Use corned waterfowl as the meat in your favorite stir-fry.

Corned Goose Hash is a favorite breakfast item in our family.

This Glazed Corned Waterfowl is a St. Patrick’s Day tradition. For the glaze recipe, go to my Corned Venison post.

Vac seal after smoking for ready to eat lunch meat or use as a substitute for bacon. These freeze great!


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Venison Shanks

Welcome Northwest Wild Country listeners. If you caught my interview on the show Saturday, December 2nd, thanks for tuning in! If you’ve stumbled upon this post looking for easy ways to cook up venison legs (shanks), welcome to my blog!

A few other recipes we discussed on the show today were Slow Cooked Venison Neck, Corned Venison and Wild Turkey Legs & Thighs.

The ODFW Facebook Live:

So back to the shank topic… why celebrate the shanks?Tenderloins and backstrap get most of the attention when it comes to cooking wild game. Cut into medallions or grilled and served rare to medium rare, they’re both easy to prepare. But these underutilized muscles don’t come close to offering the flavor of shank meat.

Because leg muscles are used every day, their texture and blood-flow levels are different than less-worked muscles. Shanks aren’t fun to tediously butcher, but they are easy to prepare, whole. Simply fillet the shank muscles away from the bones of both front and back legs, sever all tendons toward the foot, cut away obvious fatty tissues, and it’s ready to cook.If aging your meat, remove the shanks two or three days into the process. If they appear dried out, they will rehydrate in the cooking liquids.

Tossed into a slow cooker, shanks look like a mess but once cooked down, the meat easily separates from the sinuous tissues. Some of the tissues simply melt away.

Whether planning to eat shanks sliced, like roast beef, right out of the slow cooker; cubed for stroganoff, “pulled” for BBQ sliders or chopped and mixed with mayo for sandwich spread, slow cooked shank meat is flavorful, tender, easy to prepare and incredibly versatile. If you ever run across seasoned cooks of wild game who tell you shank meat is their favorite tasting cut, believe them, then discover why.

Venison Shanks

  • 2-4 shanks, removed from the bone
  • 1 cup beef stock or broth
  • 1 cup tomato juice or sauce
  • Additional ingredients optional: 1 sliced onion, 5-10 cloves garlic, 1 sliced apple, 3-4 carrots, 3-4 stalks celery, etc.

Place shank meat in a slow cooker.  Add beef stock/broth and tomato juice/sauce.  Add additional seasonings, herbs or vegetables as desired.

Cook on high heat 3-5 hours or low heat 5-7 hours; slow cooker brands may vary with time and temperature. Use a fork to test for meat tenderness. Meat should still be firm but easily pull apart. Remove meat from liquid and let cool, slightly. Strain liquid from slow cooker, discarding herbs and vegetables. Return liquid to slow cooker. Cut or pull meat away from sinuous tissues and slice, cube, chop or shred meat and add back to slow cooker liquid. Season as desired. 

TIP: Make your slow cooked food, fast, by cooling meat, vacuum sealing and freezing to use later. Add this pre-cooked meat to soups, stews, chili or gravy, be it at home or in hunting camp.

This writing was originally published in my Oregon Hunter Magazine cooking column, Sept/Oct 2015.

Shanks can be flavored with a variety of herbs & spices. A favorite for many cuts of venison is my Red Curry Blacktail. For shank meat, simply add ingredients to the crock pot and cook until tender. Keep muscle groups whole and slice across the grain before serving.

Another favorite is using cooked, seasoned shank meat in breakfast burritos. 

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Dove Lettuce Wraps

Published September 2017, California Sportsman Magazine.

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Ginger Soy Waterfowl

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Swedish Fish and More

One of my favorite things is experimenting with world cuisines. It’s even more exciting when I get to cook with someone from another country. On this occasion my son Braxton’s friend Lovisa, from Sweden, came up to cook several of her Swedish favorites. We ended up making three kinds of fish; salmon, halibut and tuna, along with a yummy dessert and Swedish Crackers. The Swedish Cracker recipe is from my friend Kirsten and they are AMAZING!

When recently recreating the salmon, I added a few yummy delicacies from IKEA to the appetizer tray. My family knows I get into experimentation mode over the holidays so nothing surprises them anymore, not even Smoked Roe from a tube! 

If you are a Salmon, Trout, Steelheader Magazine reader, here are the additional recipes I referenced in my cooking column.

Lovisa warned me that the Creamed Smoked Roe was very salty but she said it was best served with hard boiled egg slices on crackers. Sprinkled with a little dill, it was very good.

There are several types of crackers to choose from at IKEA.  If you want to make your own, the ones below are delicious.

Super easy, this Lingonberry Jam tastes amazing topped on cream cheese on a cracker. It would also be great with brie.

Making the green pea mash. Simply cook peas in water, strain, add butter and cream, and puree. So good on the halibut!

Lovisa put Braxton in charge of dessert, yikes!

My favorite part of the day was watching Lovisa text back and forth with her mom about the recipes she was making. It felt like she was here with us, not all the way across the globe.



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Perch with Wild Mushrooms

Humboldt County is an amazing place to visit for foragers, anglers, hikers, adventurers, and beachcombers. There’s no end to the adventures in this place. And be sure to stop by and see our friends at Pacific Coast Outfitters, they are the BEST!

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Power Balls NEW!

Making power balls is great fun. For me, the goal is to get the most nutritious ingredients in a ball that will hold together and travel well. I used to use equal parts peanut butter, honey and powdered milk as a base to my power ball recipe and simply add nuts, seeds and grains, but now that I am not consuming as many dairy products, legumes and sweeteners (other than fruit), I wanted to develop some power balls that are more aligned with my current eating habits. I am still hoping to lower the dried fruit content in future recipes. 

DIRECTIONS FOR POWER BALLS:  The smaller the ingredients are chopped/ground, the better they will hold together so all recipes are mixed using a food processor. Ingredients can be substituted and/or added in, just try to keep the balls a consistency that will stick together. Use a measuring spoon when making the balls to keep them portioned properly. Keep balls refrigerated or frozen for long term storage.Coconut Cacao Balls 

  • 2/3 cup figs, soak in hot water 10 minutes then drain
  • 1/4 cup chia seeds
  • 1/4 cup coconut flour
  • 2 teaspoons coffee flour, or unsweetened cocoa
  • 1/4 cup cacao nibs
  • 1/2 cup walnuts
  • 2 tablespoons honey 
  • 2 tablespoons unsweetened coconut 

Yields 24 (1 tablespoon sized balls)

Chocolate Almond Balls

  • 1/2 cup figs, soak in hot water 10 minutes then drain
  • 1/2 cup old fashioned oats
  • 1/4 cup coconut oil
  • 1/4 cup ground almonds
  • 3 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 2 tablespoons chia seeds
  • 1/4 teaspoon pure almond extract
  • 3 tablespoons ground almonds to roll balls in

Yields 15 (1 tablespoon sized balls)

Cranberry Peanut Oat Balls

  • 1 1/2 cups old fashioned oats
  • 1 cup dried craisins, soak in hot water 10 minutes then drain
  • 1/2 cup peanut butter (or other nut butter)
  • 1/4 cup unsweetened coconut
  • 2 tablespoons chia seeds
  • 2 tablespoons flax seeds
  • 1/4 cup ground peanuts to roll balls in

Yields 28 (1 tablespoon sized balls)

For more fun & healthy snacks, check out my book, The Power of Flour

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