Updated: Sep 19, 2021
Anticucho is a very popular dish that has deep roots in Peru and Bolivia. While it can be made with other tender cuts from animals, these skewers are traditionally made with heart. In this version I put my own touches in the dish by combining the flavors of both countries. I also swapped out the Rocoto chili paste which is normally used in Peru for the Korean Gochujang chili paste that most are familiar with. While this isn't traditional, Peru has a long culinary history with Asian ingredients and cooking techniques.
Because you don't want to cook heart more than medium rare and with it being cut into smaller chunks, it is highly recommended that you use a grill that can get super hot. This will ensure that you get a nice char on the heart and not overcook it trying to do so. Serve the skewers by themselves with some of the sauce as an appetizer or with roasted potatoes or rice as a main course.
1 large venison heart, cut into 1/2 inch pieces
1 cup Gojujang chili paste
6 garlic cloves, finely chopped
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
1 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1 tablespoon kosher salt
1 cup red wine vinegar
3/4 cups olive oil
1/2 cup peanut oil
skewers for grilling
1/4 cup chopped roasted peanuts
1/4 cup chopped cilantro
Make the Anticuchera Sauce: Add all of the ingredients together except the heart in a large non-reactive bowl and mix well. This will make about 3 cups of sauce. Cover and let the mixture rest for 2 hours to let the flavors blend. Set aside 1 cup of the sauce for serving the meat. The remaining two cups will be used to marinate and baste the meat.
Place the heart chunks in a medium sized non-reactive container and pour in just enough of the sauce to cover. You will be saving the rest of the sauce for basting the meat while cooking and for serving.
Place the heart chunks on the skewers. Try and assemble the skewers with meat pieces that are of equal proportion so that they cook evenly. Meaning small chunks together on the same skewer and larger chunks together on another skewer. If you end up with some longer thin pieces, you can roll them up like a pinwheel before placing on the skewer.
Over a very hot grill or stove-top grill pan cook the heart about 1 to 2 minutes on each side while basting, until they are medium rare. Garnish with the chopped peanuts and cilantro.
This is enough sauce to marinate two whitetail deer hearts or one elk heart while having some remaining to serve with the cooked meat.
If you want a sauce that's a little less tangy for serving, add in a little honey to the sauce that you set aside for serving.
If it looks like you will have extra sauce leftover, it will keep for at least 1 week in the refrigerator. The sauce can be used to marinate venison steaks, beef steaks and chicken. It also makes a great sauce for just about any barbecued meat.