Mar 27, 2012

Shout out to Rick at Whitetail Woods

Have to give a quick shout out to Rick from Whitetail Woods.  Rick was running a great little giveaway that I was fortunate enough to win so Rick and I met up yesterday so I could collect my booty and talk outdoors.  I have featured Rick in my They Have the Passion posts and Rick's blog is always on my reading list as Rick does a fantastic job putting out tons of usual information, recipes and recaps from his outdoor pursuits.

The prize pack included:

I watched the DVD last night and couldn't sleep with all the gobbling and visions of strutting longbeards going on in my head.  I will be practicing with my new call tonight and hopefully getting those sweet looking decals on my truck.  Can't wait for the Camo jacket to come in either as I will most certainly be sporting that around town for sure.  Thanks to the companies above for participating in Rick's Giveaway and to Rick for sharing his outdoor passions with his readers.

Make sure you stop by and check out Rick's blog at:

Mar 22, 2012

My favorite Wild Turkey Recipes

With spring turkey season on deck I figured I would use this opportunity to share my favorite wild turkey recipes.

How to cook those legs and thighs:  I slow cook the legs and thighs in a slow cooker with some chicken broth and some seasonings and the real secret is low and slow.  I start them in the morning and cook them on low and they are done by the time I get home from work.  I don't want the meat to fall off the bone, but it's close to doing so.  Remove them from the crock pot and let them cool on a plate.  You can strain the liquid from the slow cooker and save for adding to the soup or use for another soup.  Once the turkey is cool place them in the fridge over night and then pick them apart cold.  It seems easier to separate the meat from all those pesky tendons after it is cold.  I've also picked them after letting them cool on the counter.  I then use this picked me in the recipe below.  If you are one of those folks that swear the turkey legs are no good, then give this cooking method a try and I'm sure you will change your mind.

The first is Turkey, Mushroom and wild rice soup.  I found this recipe on a states fish and game website many years ago when I was looking for a way to use the turkey legs and thighs which is the same time I came across the cooking method above.  I can't remember which one either but some of you may have seen it.

Turkey, Mushroom and Wild Rice Soup
  • 3-4 cups of cooked turkey, cubed or pulled -I use turkey legs and thighs cooking method above.
  • 3 stalks celery, chopped
  • 2 pkgs of mushrooms sliced - what ever kind you like
  • 1 - 2 cups of cooked long grain wild rice
  • 1/2 cup of white wine
  • 2 cups of milk
  • garlic - as much as you like but at least 2cloves - crushed/minced
  • 1/2 cup chopped green onions
  • 1/2 teaspoon of thyme
  • 2 tablespoons parsley
  • 1/4 cup of parmesan cheese, I use shredded
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch
  • Water or stock (can use the stock from the crockpot here)
  • Salt and Pepper to taste
Cook the rice as directed.  In a large skillet, melt the butter and add the onion, celery, mushrooms and garlic and cook until tender.  Add Turkey, wine and salt and pepper and cook for a few minutes while stirring.  Add cornstarch to milk, mix and add to skillet.  Cook until bubbly.  add rice to pain and remaining seasonings and Parmesan cheese.  Add water or turkey/chicken stock to make everything a little soupy.  Simmer for another 20 minutes and serve.  Add some biscuits or some crusty bread and you have a warm hearty meal.

The next favorite is what we call Turkey Poppers.  There are many recipes out there that are the same, but with a different name and no matter what they are called, these are great tasting little treats that everyone enjoys and go a long way when introducing others to eating wild turkey.

Southwest Turkey Poppers
  • One Turkey breast - boneless
  • Thick sliced hickory smoked bacon- your favorite bacon will work
  • jalapeno peppers - sliced
  • Southwest salad dressing - substitute your favorite dressing or BBQ sauce.
  • Toothpicks
Cut the turkey breast into strips just wider than your bacon - about two inches and marinate overnight in southwest dressing (substitute your favorite dressing or BBQ sauce).   Prepare the jalapeno peppers by cutting in half and removing the seeds and slicing them into long pieces.  Take a marinated strip of turkey and lay it flat.  Place a slice of pepper on the center of the turkey strip and roll up.  Place a strip of bacon around the rollup and secure with a tooth pick.  Now you can cook these on the grill, my preferred method, or bake/broil in oven until turkey and bacon is cooked.  Take care to not over cook.  

If you have a favorite wild turkey recipe feel free to share it in the comments section.

Mar 19, 2012

Weekend Photos 3/18/12

A few photos from the weekend.  Enjoy.

Carolina Wren

House Finch

House Finch

My Lab Hannah's fitness partner - Bun Bun

This little guy eats way to much

Colorful Rainbow trout - Willimantic River TMA

Lots of Stoneflies hatching right now

Mar 13, 2012

My Weekend Outdoors - 3/11/12

It was a pretty nice weekend here in the Northeast with warmer temps and clear skies, you know the kid of day you must take advantage of and spend as much time as possible outdoors and I did.  I did some backyard birding and photography, made a little maple syrup and even got into some trout with the fly rod and before I get yelled at, I even did some house work.

With the night time temps warming up the sugaring season may be coming to an end and I can't say I am sorry to see it end.  As tasty as pure maple syrup is, it is truly a labor of love and Monday started week 5 of the season which includes many late nights during the week and longer weekends.  On Saturday Bubba and I bottled up another 6 gallons which helped us get closer to the 60 gallon yearly average, down some from last years 101 gallons though.  When you poor this stuff over your pancakes you quickly forget about those late nights and long weekends. 

Where the Magic happens - 30 gallons of sap per hour

Finished Product

Makes the time all worth while

The activity at my bird feeders has really picked up over the past couple weeks with new visitors showing up which is a good sign spring is on the way as the birds start migrating back North.  The newest visitors around my house were Red-winged blackbirds, American Goldfinches, Common Crackles, Mourning Doves and finally a couple of Robins.  At one point I had 10 American Goldfinches enjoying my offerings at the same time.  I think that is a record for me.  The highlight though was a hawk that thought he would get an easy meal at my feeder.  He didn't but came close twice.  I'm not sure if it is a Coppers Hawk or a Sharp-shinned Hawk as they are very similar and hard to differentiate.  I do hope to see the Baltimore Orioles come back this spring.

Coopers or Sharp-shinned Hawk?

Mourning Dove

Red-winged Blackbird
Sunday afternoon found me fishing the Willimantic River TMA which is a fly fishing only section open year round for catch and release fishing.  I took a quick lunch run up there last week and was skunked but today was definitely more productive as bent rods and tight lines produce some nice trout to hand.  All released to provide someone else with the enjoyment they gave me.  I broke out the Greys Streamflex 10' 4wt and rigged up to Euro Nymph using a coiled sighter.  I picked up fish on brown rubber legged stonefly, a Frenchie style pheasant tail and a walt's worm.  I did miss a few as well.  The two best fish was a 14"  hefty rainbow and a 13" tiger trout.

This hefty 14"+ Rainbow took a size 18 Frenchie PT w/Orange Bead

This Rainbow trout took the size 18 Frenchie

Tiger Trout took the Rubber Legged Stone

A little video from the release of the bigger rainbow.  Looks like I need to work on my one handed video release technique though.  This was taken using my Olympus TG-310.

My daughter and I even got a little archery practice in and man were we rusty.  Not bad for a weekend outdoors.  So what did you do this past weekend?

Mar 7, 2012

Good Deals on some Fly Rods and Reels

I stopped up at my local fly shop  - JTs FLy Shop - Sunday and checked out some of their clearance items and they have a pretty good list of rods (Hardy & Grey, TFO), a few reels (Redington & TFO) and some fly lines at pretty good prices.  You can check out the rods and reels on clearance on their website at:

They don't have a list of the fly lines posted yet but if I remember correctly they had plenty of AirFlo and some Scientific Angler lines both fresh and saltwater lines available.  You'll have to contact the shop for specifics.

If you are looking to get started at a reasonable price or looking to add something to your arsenal then check them out and give them a call at the shop 860-684-1575 or via email at  Great folks to work with.  Make sure you tell them you heard about it from Passinthru Outdoors.

Mar 1, 2012

Giveaway deadline extended

I am swamped with work and won't be able to get around to the giveaway until this weekend so I am extending the deadline for entries until Midnight Saturday March 3rd.  Winners will be announced Sunday.

See the original post at

You can check out some of the hand made items up for grabs here:

Get your entries in and make sure to leave comments on the original post.