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Smoked Venison - by Ross A. Wallingford


After eating some whitetail deer I had smoked with this recipe, a friend remarked that this might just be the best way to eat venison! This recipe is simply superb for any game meat such as deer, elk, moose and caribou. Feel free to experiment with the marinade by adding other spices or by eliminating some, just be sure to keep the salt and sugar. Rump roasts are the best cuts for this recipe and I prefer to debone them prior to smoking. To enjoy smoked game to the fullest, compliment it with a glass of good oak-aged California red wine or single malt scotch. After trying this recipe, you just might agree with my friend!

1 cup non-iodized salt
1 Tbs sage
1 cup sugar
1 Tbs ground cloves
1 Tbs tarragon
1 Tbs soy sauce
4 Tbs black pepper
1 Tbs thyme
1 Tsp white pepper
2 bay leaves

Combine the above ingredients in a 2-quart plastic container and add water until full. Cap and shake well to dissolve the salt and sugar. Using a fork or knife, puncture the meat several times to allow the marinade to penetrate more completely. Place the meat in a plastic bowl and cover with the marinade. Marinade in the refrigerator for 3-4 days, turning the meat each day. Remove the meat from the marinade and place back in the refrigerator on a plate for 1 hour, uncovered. Light one half of a gas grill and place a metal container full of hickory chips just above the flame. Once the grill is smoking well, place the meat on the cool side of the grill. The idea is to cook very, very slowly using indirect heat. Smoke with 2-3 pans of hickory chips and allow to continue cooking until a temperature of at least 165°F is reached in the center of the meat (about 4 hours). If you have a smoker/cooker, just follow the directions included with it. Remove from the grill and let cool. Slice thinly with a sharp knife and store refrigerated in a zip-lock bag. You will only have to store it for a short time as it is bound to be consumed quickly!
 
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Spiced Venison Steaks with Red Wine Sauce
Jody Prival
Serves 8.

a 3 1/2 to 4 pound boneless loin of venison, trimmed and cut crosswise into eight 4 to 6 ounce steaks, reserving any remaining for another use, or eight 6 ounce filets mignons of beef

2 tablespoons black peppercorns
2 tablespoons Szechuan peppercorns
2 tablespoons dried allspice berries
1 stick (1/2 cup) plus 3 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
3 tablespoons vegetable oil
1/2 cup minced white part of scallion plus 1/3 cup thinly sliced scallion green
1 cup dry red wine

Flatten each steak to a 3/4 inch thickness between 2 pieces of plastic wrap. In a heavy-duty sealable plastic bag or between 2 sheets of wax paper crush the peppercorns and the allspice berries coarsely with the bottom of a heavy skillet. Press the peppercorn mixture into both sides of the steaks and chill the steaks, covered with plastic wrap, for at least 2 hours or overnight.

In each of 2 heavy skillets heat 1/2 tablespoons of the butter and 1 1/2 tablespoons of the oil over moderately high heat until the foam subsides and in the fat saute steaks, seasoned with salt, for 3 to 4 minutes on each side, or until they are just springy to the touch for rare meat.

Transfer the steaks with a slotted spatula to a platter and keep them warm, covered loosely. Pour off the fat remaining in the skillets, to each skillet add 1 tablespoon of the remaining butter and half the minced white scallion, and cook the scallion over moderate heat, stirring, until it is softened. Deglaze each skillet with 1/2 cup of the wine, scraping up any brown bits clinging to the skillet, and pour the wine mixture from one skillet into the other. Boil the wine mixture until it is reduced to a glaze, remove the skillet from the heat, and whisk in the remaining 8 tablespoons butter, 1 tablespoon at a time, adding each new piece just before the previous one has melted completely. Whisk in the scallion green and salt and black pepper to taste. Spoon some of the sauce over each steak. :right:
 
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