Homemade gravy is an easy task that is often overlooked. It rarely can be as thick as a packet gravy, but the fact that your meat has it’s own flavor means you can make your own gravy with every meat based dish. This venison gravy was quite delicious. The venison flavor was at the front, and the beef flavor just helped support and smooth out the venison flavor. We greatly trimmed our venison so it had very little gamy flavor. This created a clean venison that released it’s juices and flavored the oil to create a very delicious gravy. Finally, I chose thyme as my seasoning because it’s a complimenting flavor that didn’t mask any other present flavor.
Cut venison steak into 1/4 to 1/8 inch slices. Once sliced, tear pieces into pieces about 1 inch by 1 inch. Heat large skillet or sauce pan over medium high heat. Add about 3 Tbsp oil, and heat til shimmering.
Add meat to pan and spread meat into an even layer. Cook meat for 2-3 minutes before flipping, then cook for another 2-3 minutes on the second side.
Prepare 1 cup of beef bouillon. Add 2 Tbsp flour and whisk until all clumps disappear. Once mixed, add to meat and oil. Cook until thickened and bubbling. Add 1/2 Tbsp thyme, stir, and cook for an additional minute before serving. If you want a smooth gravy use a fresh thyme sprig and remove before serving.
Tacos are a quick and easy dinner. I made the steak and also the tortillas in less than 30 minutes! These are the homemade tortillas I posted yesterday, and they worked great with these tacos. I like to make my food juicy and a bit messy when I can, and though I tried very hard with the tacos seasoning, sour cream, and salsa, these tortilla were firm and not soggy at all! The way I cooked my steak was to medium, and it was a bit chewy. I also should have cut my pieces smaller before cooking. These pieces were about 1 1/2 to 2 inch cubes and if these pieces were about 1/2 inch cubes they would have been more “full” tacos, but you won’t get as pretty photos.
Dice up a thawed steak to your desired size. Brown your steak on two minutes per side. Once cooked, add 1/2 packet of taco seasoning, and 1/2 recommended water. Reduce to a simmer and cook until sauce thickens.
Assemble tacos with desired toppings. I used homemade tortillas from yesterday’s post, steak, shredded mozzarella, torn iceberg lettuce, and topped it with mild salsa and sour cream.
I saw this several years ago on the internet that if you have a cut of beef, you can stick it in a blender or food processor to turn it into ground beef. I used sliced venison to make this ground venison. My venison was also completely thawed. Many recipes tell you to use frozen meat for this because your meat will come out more grain-like and less mushy. I can say that it did come out a bit mushy for me, but thankfully I wasn’t using it for burgers or meatloaf, so the texture was really no problem since i was just browning it to put into a recipe. If you are using this meat for one of the above mentioned items, I would freeze the meat or half freeze it to get clean cuts, but if you use it in something else like me, it won’t make a big difference.
Turn out frozen or half frozen meat into a blender or food processor. Secure the lid.
Pulse until all large chunks are gone, and the meat has a consistent small chunk appearance.
You can then either re-freeze, or begin cooking your dish.
I did a lot of research before starting this recipe. I was interested in how people usually make roux based soups at home. I use mushroom soup in my Tuna Noodle recipe and since everyone says it was easy, I thought I could make other classic bases for recipes, such as cream of chicken or cream of celery. I was looking through my freezer for what meat I could put in this casserole, and by far, I had many packets of Venison Minute steaks. This was steaks that were sliced on a meat slicer. You could easily use cubed up meat instead or even ground burger, but I liked the idea of a steak casserole. I was thinking of making a gravy base sauce, but I didn’t know what that would do to the potatoes, and dark stained potatoes didn’t seem very appealing to me. Thinking of soups, I thought of onions. Steak and onions go well together. So the roux base is done like any other cream soup. Instead of adding minced onion, I could have added sliced onions and onion powder, and 2 cups of milk to get a condensed onion soup (which is similar to cream of celery, chicken, and mushroom made at home). I wanted to reheat the meat a bit before baking, so I did that while the soup was getting up to temperature. I really enjoyed this dish. I served it without waiting and it wasn’t as good as it was a few minutes later, so let it rest a bit. The meat became super tender and just fell apart as you ate it, and the potatoes were done for me by the 50 minute mark.
Wash 6 medium potatoes (4 cups), dice and place in a 9×13 pan. Peel an onion, half and slice into ringlets. Separate and add to potatoes. Mix and set aside.
In a large skillet, begin heating it over medium high heat. If you have minute steaks, you have nothing to do. If you have a whole piece of meat, slice into thin slices only 1/4 inch thick or make 1/2 inch cubes. Add 2 Tbsp of oil to pan. Add meat to pan and cook each side for only 1-2 minutes, until browned. Once cooked, add to side plate for the time being.
Heat oven to 350F. Turn down heat to medium low. Melt 2 Tbsp of butter into the pan, but do not brown butter. Once just melted, add 3 Tbsp flour. Whisk flour into butter, and cook until butter and flour is bubbly. Add 2 Tbsp dried minced onion, and 1 packet of Onion soup mix. Add 4 cups of milk and stir.
Add meat back to skillet and coat. Mix in 2 tsp of garlic powder and 1 Tbsp Onion powder. Heat to a simmer and cook for another 2-3 minutes, then pour over potatoes and onion, even out meat distribution, and add to oven for 50 minutes.
After time, stab a potato with a fork to assure they are done. Let it rest for 5 minutes before serving.
Grilling is a science that I have very little experience with. Grilling has always been one of those things that work good in concept, but bad in execution, at least for me. I used to grill with the top open and without a working thermometer, and since learning the way a grill works, it has been remarkably easier to grill. Temperatures are just as important as they are for ovens. They tell you if you are hot enough to cook your food. The lid also helps maintain the oven aspect of the grill, maintaining a temperature for reliable cooking time. The lid is also a quick and easy way to drop the temperature if it’s getting too hot. If you want to smoke on your grill, which I will be doing this summer, you’ll want the temperature to be low, the low 200 F range. One way to keep it that low is to prop the door open slightly. I wasn’t able to get my grill as hot as I wanted because of wind and outdoor temperature, so I had to cook them a bit longer. I also had to rotate them when I flipped them on the grill, since the back of my grill was hotter than the front. If you aren’t sure about if it is done, use a thermometer and take into account the temperature will continue to climb another 5-10 degrees after you remove it from the flame.
Heat your grill and get it to stay around 430 – 450 F. Prepare your steaks, thaw, and place each on it’s own piece of foil.
Once the grill is heated, place the steaks and foil onto the hottest part of the grill. Cook the steaks with the lid closed. Once it gets back up to temperature, cook for 6 minutes.
Flip your steaks. Add 1/2 Tbsp of butter to each. Close the lid, let it get back up to temperature, cook for an additional 6 minutes. Remove from heat and let sit for 5 minutes before serving.