VENISON STEAK, SWEET CORN PURÉE, HOMINY HUSHPUPPY, APPLE BACON JAM
This is a pretty awesome time of the year for me living in South Carolina’s Lowcountry.
It’s mid-September, but it’s still blazing hot enough to produce some awesome summer vegetables.
And just a couple of hours away in the cooler mountain region, fresh apples are being picked and sent to me by friends.
So this is a recipe that lets a couple of non-typical seasonal flavor profiles shine.
for the venison steaks
• 6 - six ounce venison steaks (Loin or Sirloin)
• 1/2 - balsamic vinegar
• 1/4 cup - honey
• 2 garlic cloves (chopped)
• 3 sprigs- fresh rosemary
• 1 tsp - hot chile flakes
• 1/2 tsp - black pepper
• 1/2 cup - olive oil
for the apple bacon chutney
• 8 ounces - smoked bacon (finely chopped)
• 1/2 onion (small diced)
• 1 fennel bulb - (cored and small diced)
• 1 tsp - Fresh rosemary (finely chopped)
• 2 garlic cloves (minced)
• 1 large firm fleshed apple (peeled, cored and 1/2-inch diced)
• 1/2 tsp - ground fennel
• 1 tbsp - lemon juice
• 1 tsp - grated lemon zest (optional)
• 1 teaspoon - maple syrup
• Salt and pepper to taste
for the sweet corn purée
• 4 tbsp - unsalted butter
• 2 cups - fresh or thawed frozen corn kernels (don‘t use canned corn)
• 2 cups - heavy cream
• salt and pepper to taste
for the hominy hush puppies
• 1 1/2 cups - cornmeal
• 1/2 cup - self-rising flour
• 1/2 tsp - baking powder
• 1/2 teaspoon salt
• 3/4 cups - buttermilk
• 1/2 cup - canned hominy
• vegetable oil for frying
1. Make the chutney. In a large pan over medium heat, cook the bacon until browned and crisp (about 8 Minutes). Transfer the bacon onto a paper towel while reserving about two tablespoons of the bacon fat in the pan. Lower the heat to medium low and add the onion, fennel, garlic, apple, ground fennel and rosemary to the pan. Cover and cook for about 6-8 minutes (or until soft) while stirring occasionally. Turn off the heat. Stir in the bacon, remaining ingredients and season to taste. Can be made two days ahead.
2. Marinate the venison steaks. In a bowl, mix all of the ingredients together besides the steaks. Add the steaks to a freezer bag and pour the marinade over the venison. Marinate for 3-12 hours.
3. Make the sweet corn puré. In a medium sized pan, melt the butter over medium heat. Add the corn and cook for about 7 minutes. Add the cream, bring to a simmer and cook the mixture until it has reduced by half, while stirring frequently. Let cool slightly, pour into a blender and purée until smooth. Season with salt and pepper. Can be made the day before.
4. Grill your steaks. Remove the excess marinade from the steaks and let them come to room temperature for 30 minutes to 1 hour. Brush with oil, season with salt/pepper and cook to a medium rare temperature. Let the meat rest while you make the hush puppies.
5. Make the hominy hush puppies. Add enough vegetable oil to a heavy bottomed pot to about the depth of 3 inches. Heat the oil to 350 degrees. While the oil is heating, make your batter. To a mixing bowl, add the cornmeal, flour, baking soda and salt. Stir to combine. In a blender, add the buttermilk, drained hominy and egg, purée until smooth. Pour the buttermilk mixture into the dry ingredients and mix together well. Drop the batter 1 tablespoon at a time into the preheated oil. Fry until nicely golden brown, while turning the hushpuppies during the cooking process if needed.