Friday, April 15, 2011

2011 Hunting Season-Part 1

If your household is anything like mine, the term "hunting season" is a crock. That would imply that there was an off-season and most of us Montanans know what a silly idea that would be.

While Nate and I both grew up in hunting families, I am not nearly the extremist he is. I will never understand his need to hang animal skulls on our already limited (apartment) wall space, or his need for new camo every year. (Oh what? Because that other set that looks just like leaves and branches is sooooo last year?)

I do appreciate the thrill of the hunt, the scenery, the hiking, and most of all the meat. I love to share this hobby ( with my Husband. It's amazing how hiking through a dark forest and spending the entire day side by side in almost complete silence can strengthen a marriage. Don't ever repeat that last line in front of your manly mountain man, though. I once noted to Nate, as the sun was coming up and we were high on a ridge of Ashley Lake, how romantic it was. I was answered with a head shake, and a "Shut Up" that would have gotten him in trouble if he hadn't strategically placed a smirk on his face just in time.

Why am I writing about hunting in April? Tis the season for deadlines. Don't miss out on applying for the license/special permit you want. The deadline for Spring Black Bear just passed us up on April 14th. (I know, I should have written this sooner, right? Sorry.) You can try again for Fall on August 31st.
If you are putting in for Bison, Moose, Bighorn Sheep, or Mountain Goats, the deadline is May 2, 2011.
All Supertag deadlines are either in June or July.

For more information and precise dates, CLICK HERE

As luck would have it, I fell "victim" to the new law requiring all persons born after 1985 to complete a Hunter Education course. I was 21 and stuffing my postpartum body into a desk built for the elementary school students who usually occupied the classroom. Lucky for me, I was placed in a class for those 15 and older. (If only sarcasm could be typed.) On our "field day" we were mixed with other classes. It was there that my 8 year old peers and I shot at targets, tracked fake blood, and identified noxious weeds. If you need to sign up for a class, first of all-it sucks to be you. Second of all, you can find the schedules here:

Ok, let's be fair. It is only a few days. I did learn a few things and I am happy to be able to hunt. Kids will enjoy the course and even if your child doesn't plan on hunting this season, they can benefit from the gun safety, wilderness knowledge, and ethics talks.

As the official "season" approaches, I will be writing a little more about hunting, meat processing, etc. Until then, bust out those maps and start scouting. If you haven't hunted before, consider it. Really. Pull out a lb of last season's harvest and make this recipe, taken from the "The Magic that is Montana-an FWP cookbook"
I have no idea how old this cookbook is. I purchased it at a yard sale a few years ago. I have scoured the pages looking for the date that it was published and have been unsuccessful.

Spicy Curry

4 cups cooked cubed venison 
2 large, firm apples
2 medium yellow onions
2 Tbl olive oil
4 cloves minced garlic
2Tbl flour
2 Tbl curry powder
3 cups chicken stock
2 cups plain yogurt
Extra spices to taste (optional): cayenne, cumin, tumeric, and chili powder

Chop the apples and onions coarsely. Saute the onions and garlic in olive oil on medium heat until the onions are translucent. Add the apples and continue to saute for about 5 minutes. Add the flour and curry powder and stir to coat the ingredients. Add the chicken broth and let this mixture cook and thicken as you stir for about 10 minutes. Stir in the cubed meat and optional spices and cook for another 5 minutes. Turn off the heat, and stir in the yogurt until all of the ingredients are blended. Serve over rice with any of the following on top: sliced bananas, shredded coconut, chopped peanuts, sunflower seeds, chopped green onions, chopped bacon, raisins or chutney.

Note: Curries come in all varieties and potentcies-from mild to very hot. This is a spicy mixture with a symphony of flavors.

Submitted by Wendy Kamm
Division: Law enforcement
Region 4

I am ALWAYS looking for new and inventive ways to prepare venison and/or elk. If you have a recipe to share, PLEASE send it to me at . I would be more than happy to test it and post it on here. If we can generate enough interest, I am hoping for a game meat recipe contest in the future.

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