To me, deer hunting is a gift from God and a cherished part of life. I can't imagine not being able to harvest my own meat or share in the hunt's bounty with family and friends.
Each year, I share some special venison recipes that are particularly well suited to the holiday season. This year's collection is a bit of a departure, though, in that I'm presenting some dishes that honor those who have passed on before us.
I'm a true Cajun, born and raised in Louisiana. So as you might imagine, I'm including an old-school French recipe or two. But you don't have to be Cajun, or anything else in particular, to enjoy these dishes. I really believe that after you've tried them, you'll want to share with others who also enjoy venison.
What I like to do is simplify over-the-top recipes so anyone of any skill level can easily prepare them and make a great meal. Yes, I could present some incredibly complex dishes and take half this magazine trying to make myself look like some culinary genius, but that wouldn't help anyone. It would be silly to waste a bunch of food, energy and time making goofy dishes nobody in their right mind wants to make at home. Becoming one of those prima donna chefs making frou-frou platters has never entered my brain.
If you're lucky enough to have acquired some venison this season, congratulations! Make sure to have your chosen beverages, great spices and fresh herbs at the ready. Then break out the "good" dishes and call as many family members and friends as you can stand to have over at one time.
Venison Steak Au Poivre Recipe
This gourmet peppered venison steak recipe tastes like it came straight out of a five-star restaurant and is super simple to prepare.
- 3 tablespoons black peppercorns, crushed or cracked
- 6-8 venison steaks, thick cut
- ½ cup olive oil
- Pink sea salt
- 1 cup dry white wine
- 1 cup brandy
- 2 tablespoons chicken base paste in ½ cup hot water
- 4 tablespoons unsalted butter
Get the Recipe: Venison Steak Au Poivre Recipe
Cajun Smoked Venison Neck Recipe
Anyone that has prepared venison neck before will tell you the best way is to smoke the meat and then cook it in wine.
- 1 deer neck, bone in
- 2 Vidalia onions, rough chopped
- 3 bell peppers, rough chopped
- 6-8 stalks celery, rough chopped
- 4 portobello mushrooms, rough chopped
- 1 fresh whole garlic (6 bulbs)
- 1 bunch chopped green onions
- Fresh basil chiffonade
- 3 cups beef stock or demi glaze
- 1 cup red wine
- 1 ring smoked kielbasa sausage
Dry Rub Ingredients:
- 4 tablespoons blackened steak seasoning
- 2 teaspoons cayenne pepper
- 1 tablespoon Zatarain's Pro Boil
Get the Recipe: Cajun Smoked Venison Neck Recipe
N'awlins Venison Dirty Rice Recipe
Get a taste of New Orleans with this Venison Dirty Rice Recipe.
- 3 tablespoons bacon grease (or 5 strips bacon)
- 1 pound ground venison (can substitute 1 pound breakfast-style venison sausage)
- 1 pound chicken livers, chopped and ground fine
- 1 bell pepper, diced
- 2 sweet onions, diced
- 4 cups cooked rice
- 2 teaspoons salt
- 2 teaspoons white pepper
- 1 teaspoon fine-ground black pepper
Get the Recipe: N'awlins Venison Dirty Rice Recipe
Venison Steak Diane Recipe
This Venison Steak Diane Recipe utilizes the pan juices to create a thick and flavorful sauce.
- ½ pound venison backstrap (can substitute boned lamb loin or beef filet mignon)
- Salt to taste
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 1 shallot, minced
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- ¼ cup brandy
- ½ cup beef stock or demi glaze
- 2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
- 1 tablespoon mustard
- 1 tablespoon tomato paste
- ¼ cup heavy cream
- Minced herbs for garnish (basil, parsley, chives, etc.)
Get the Recipe: Venison Steak Diane Recipe