For Deer ol’ Mom: Venison Fajitas

10 May

The great thing about having parents who are avid hunters is the endless stream of delicious venison that I get sent home with just about every time I visit.  Dad recently returned from an excursion in Colorado with some great mule deer meat that we also happened to grill for his 50th birthday on Friday.  An extra thawed package remained in the fridge, just begging to treat mom to a great Summer-y meal on Mother’s Day.  I was happy to oblige on a beautiful day like today.  And wouldn’t you know it, I drove home with a passenger seat full of venison, a big potted mint plant for my porch (ahem, mojitos), and money for a haircut (clearly, I need some work :/).  I love Mother’s Day!

Venison Fajitas

Ingredient Rundown (serves 2-3):

  • 1lb venison steak (Colorado mule deer backstrap steak in this case)
  • 1 green bell pepper, sliced
  • 1 red bell pepper, sliced
  • 1/2 medium red onion, sliced
  • spicy rub for venison ( if you don’t have any Penzeys Northwoods Fire yet, fix that)
  • 1 tbsp lime juice
  • plenty of chopped cilantro
  • ~1/3 cup of grapefruit juice (optional, happened to be in my parents’ fridge and seemed like a fun way to add some sweetness and acidity in a quick marinade)
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • tortillas (flour or corn – I ended up using some foo-foo cilantro-jalepeno-flavored, fajita-sized flour ones)
  • sour cream and/or fresh pico to garnish

How I do it:

  1. Rub venison with spices, chopped cilantro, salt and pepper.  Add lime juice and grapefruit juice and allow to marinate, stirring occasionally, for at least half an hour but up to several hours in refrigerator.
  2. Slice bell peppers and onions, sprinkle with rub, salt, pepper, cilantro and citrus and allow to marinate along with venison.
  3. Fire up that grill.  Cook over high heat for 3-5 per side or until cooked medium.  You could pan sear the steak as well, but what fun is that?  It’s grilling season, damn it, despite the occasional 35 degree May hiccup.  Let meat rest for 5-10 minutes then slice thin.
  4. Saute the veggies with a tablespoon of vegetable oil over high heat until translucent 8-10 minutes.
  5. Heat the tortillas (a few seconds in the microwave brings them to life) and assemble with condiments of choice.
  6. Take a shot of premium tequila with your mom.  She deserves it for being your mom and you deserve it for whipping up a quick and tasty meal.  Dig in.

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