Greek Marinated Venison Loin Steak and Fries

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I made this on one of those days where I didn’t know what I was going to make for dinner, I didn’t have the right ingredients for what I first decided on, and then the pivot turned out way better than what I was wanting in the first place. Don’t you love it when that happens?

It’s honestly where I first got the inkling that I might be somewhat good at cooking, because being flexible and creative was something I enjoyed, and it usually always paid off. I’m proud of myself that I can now do this with wild game, because when I first started cooking it, I was SO intimidated because I never knew what to do with it!

And this time, I had some of those same nerves. I cook a lot of venison, sure, but I’m not familiar with cooking loin chops, so it was kind of a shot in the dark when I was having a hard time deciding what to make. I stuck with my tried and true course of marinating for 20-30 mins and cooking it hot and fast, and it serve me well.

Long story short, if you have some venison loin chops, you’ll want to make this. I’m so used to always eating backstraps, tenderloins, and random deer steaks, that I totally underestimated the loin chops, and I am newly hooked! I’ll for sure be requesting these cuts from the hubs’ harvest next year!

Have you made these? Let me know what you think or any questions you have in the comments below!


RECIPE (Serves 2-4)

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 lb venison loin chops (about 3-4 chops)⁠
  • 2-3 yellow potatoes, cut into fries⁠
  • 1 cup + 1/3 cup olive oil⁠
  • 6 cloves garlic, minced⁠
  • 1 tbsp. + 2 tsp. oregano⁠
  • 1 tsp. + 1 tsp. salt⁠
  • 1 tsp. + 1 tsp. pepper⁠
  • 1 tbsp. lemon juice

DIRECTIONS:

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Mix 1 c olive oil, garlic, 1 tbsp. oregano, 1 tsp. salt, 1 tsp. pepper, and 1 tbsp. lemon juice in a bowl, and use it as a marinade for your chops. Once covered with the mixture, let your chops marinate for about 20-30 mins. While the chops are marinating, mix the remaining olive oil, salt and pepper, and oregano. Cover a sheet pan with parchment paper, spread out your fries on the pan, and drizzle the olive oil mixture over the fries. Toss to coat. Cook for 20 mins flipping halfway, and then remove from the oven (don’t turn off the oven!) After the chops are finished marinating, heat n oven-safe pan on high heat (preferably a cast iron – get it hot!). Sear the chops for about 1 minute on each side, and then place the pan in the oven for about 5-7 mins. Once done, remove from the oven, and serve with the fries!⁠


Asian Duck Stir Fry

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This stir fry was my first creation with this season’s duck harvest, and let’s just say it went VERY well. I’m a little nervous that I created too big of shoes for myself fill for the rest of the season, but this is for sure going to be a regular part of the rotation. ⁠Plus, it took me less than 30 minutes from start to finish. Talk about a mom win!⁠

I love a good stir fry, and it is seriously one of the easiest and best things you can do with duck. It’s a great dish to make if you are new to cooking it, but it is also such a great tried and true if you are a veteran. If your duck is gamey, or you are still getting used to the taste of duck, these flavors compliment it in such a lovely way that will leave you wanting more.

Of course, if you don’t have duck, you can use any red meat to substitute! If you use beef, start cooking it before adding in your veggies (instead of after) as it takes longer to cook than wild game. ⁠

To make this recipe #whole30approved and #paleofriendly, swap your soy sauce for equal parts coconut aminos.⁠

Have you made these? Let me know what you think or any questions you have in the comments below!


RECIPE (Serves 2)

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 lb duck breasts, sliced into pieces 1/4-1/2 inch thick⁠
  • 1 orange bell pepper, sliced⁠
  • 1 medium yellow squash, cut into matchsticks⁠
  • 3 Thai chiles, sliced⁠ and de-seeded⁠
  • 1/3 + 1/4 cup soy sauce⁠
  • 1 tbsp. sesame seed oil⁠
  • 1/2 tbsp. fish sauce⁠
  • 1 tbsp. garlic powder⁠
  • 1 tsp salt & pepper (each)⁠
  • Arrowroot slurry (1 tbsp. arrowroot starch mixed with 1 tbsp. water.⁠
  • 1/4 cup white vinegar or rice vinegar⁠

DIRECTIONS:

Heat a large pan over medium-high heat, and add your sesame seed oil. Once heated, add the sliced veggies, the fish sauce, and the 1/3 cup soy sauce. Cook until just starting to soften, about 5-7 mins. Move your veggies to one side of the pan so it only takes up half the pan, and add your duck to the other half of the pan. Stir constantly until the duck is just browned. Add the chiles, the additional 1/4 cup soy sauce, and the arrowroot slurry and stir to mix evenly. Turn off the heat, add the vinegar, and scrape up the brown bits from the pan to mix into the stir fry. Serve over rice (or your base of choice!) and CHOW DOWN! ⁠


Pumpkin Mac and Cheese

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Okay, here it is, my non-beverage contribution to all things pumpkin before October is officially over – PUMPKIN MAC AND CHEESE! It seems like most recipes I’ve been seeing with pumpkin are sweet, and I’m just not a baker by any means, so I wanted to create something savory to use all that pumpkin puree. ⁠

Plus, Bruce and I are both mac and cheese fiends, so I thought, why not use it that way? It’s creamy and delicious, and gives you all the comfort of mac and cheese with out feeling like you’re eating a kid’s food. Mac and cheese for the modern day basic mom!

The beauty of this recipe is that it is so versatile, and can be adjusted for any diet preference. I used basic, full-fat products because I’m feeing it to a toddler, but if you want to tweak for your sensitivities or preferences you can.

Want to use alternative milk? It works. Want to use alternative noodles? It works. Want to use alternative flour? It works.

Seriously so easy, and it’s kid AND adult-friendly. I made a giant pot earlier this week, and Bruce and I have eaten it for lunch every day – put this on your menu!

One thing to note — if you have leftovers, the best way to reheat the pasta is on the stove. Just put the desired amount of mac and cheese in the pot, add a splash or so of milk (depending on how much is in the pot), and head on medium low until it is absorbed and warm through. This will prevent it from being dried out!

Have you made these? Let me know what you think or any questions you have in the comments below!


RECIPE (Serves XX)

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 box pasta (I used rigatoni)
  • 1 tbsp. butter (@kerrygold is my go-to)
  • 3/4 cup milk (I used whole milk)
  • 1 tbsp. flour (I used all-purpose)
  • 1 cup white cheddar cheese
  • 1/4 cup grated/shredded Parmesan cheese
  • 1/4 cup pumpkin puree
  • 1 tbsp. sage
  • 1 tbsp. thyme
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1 tsp. pepper

DIRECTIONS:

Cook your pasta according to box instructions, rinse, and set aside. In a sauce pan, heat butter over medium heat. Once melted, add flour and whisk until combined. Add milk, cheese, and pumpkin purée, and stir until combined and melted. Mix in your spices, and then pour your noodles back in. Stir to coat noodles evenly. Top with any extra cheese if desired, and serve!