Culinary Adventures, Eats, Our Growing Edge, Recipes
Comments 18

Wild Venison


Meat Pack

I made an order with Eketahuna Country Meats last week. The first time I ordered from them, which I blogged about here, we got 20kg of beef in various wonderful cuts. This time I went for their $145 mixed meat pack rather than all beef. Buying this way really pushes my growing edge and forces me to cook with cuts and meats I would never normally buy.
I usually buy cheap cuts and whatever is on special. Here, I’m getting cheap cuts like mince and sausage along with prize cuts like lamb rack and Porterhouse steak. Eketahuna deliver fortnightly and for free throughout the North Island with minimum order of $95.

Denver Leg?

The contents of the meat packs change regularly and our pack came with a cut I didn’t recognise at all. The black-red hunk of meat was labelled as “Denver leg”.

Denver? I could think of two, no, three Denvers. The Dinosaur, the guilty dog and Colorado. I admit, I had no clue what this mystery meat was and had to Google it and check Eketahuna’s website to make sure. Turns out, Denver leg is a cut of venison and in this case, wild venison.


I’ve eaten venison a couple of times but never cooked it before. Luckily, the Denver leg is simple to cook. I browsed a few recipes online, some suggested marinating, others did not. I remembered the venison tataki I enjoyed at Taste at The Cloud a few years back and how rare it was.

We have really good venison here in New Zealand which is mostly exported to European and US markets. I wonder if some of you have seen exported New Zealand venison at your local market?

I figured this venison looked robust enough to handle some good flavouring, so I marinated it with a bit of Worcestershire sauce, a little less soy sauce and some dried herbs (sage, thyme, marjoram). I let this do it’s thing in the fridge and skipped off to work while I dreamed up what else to serve with it.

As you can see below, my measurements are vague and to be honest, this is how I generally cook: by eyeballing quantities, by feel and by mood. Does anyone really measure out seasonings when cooking? Well, I don’t.


Easy Venison Steak

Serves 2 hungry people


  • 500 grams venison (Denver Leg)
  • 2 splashes Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 splash light soy sauce
  • A sprinkling of mixed herbs
  • Oil
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Optional: capers


  1. Take a container big enough to fit the venison and add Worcestershire sauce, light soy sauce and the venison. Sprinkle with herbs, flip over and mush about to coat the meat. Cover and refrigerate overnight or throughout the day.
  2. Take the meat out of the fridge half an hour before cooking to take off the chill. Season with salt and pepper right before cooking.
  3. Take a heavy pan and put on very high heat. Add a glug (about 1 tablespoon) of oil and once that is hot, carefully add the meat. Cook for 3 minutes each side for rare (and I’d guess 5 minutes each side for medium rare)
  4. Remove from heat, cover and rest 10 minutes before slicing 5mm thick. Sprinkle with capers and serve with potatoes and vegetables cooked any way you like ’em.

We had ours with red skinned potatoes dauphinoise, honey herb carrots and a crazy looking pea puree.



Venison is super easy to cook. I love how unfussy it is. Next time I might try it as venison tataki or carpaccio starter. The Koala would have probably enjoyed this cooked a little longer as medium rare, I’d reckon 5 minutes on each side, but I enjoy rare meats and venison was a good one for it.

Eketahuna Country Meats

our-growing-edge-badgeThis post is part of Our Growing Edge, a monthly blogging event to encourage bloggers to try new food related things. Jules from The Kiwi Diaries is the host for this month’s event.

If you have a blog and you are eating or cooking something new this month, click below to join. More information here.


  1. I definitely don’t measure. I have Worcestershire sauce left over from one dish I made and with no idea what to do with it. Now I know…

  2. Meat this red isn’t normally my thing but you plated it so beautifully, I must say, it’s tempting as all hell.
    That press purée looks damn good too

  3. I love reading your posts about foods I wouldn’t normally cook, because they encourage me to try new things.

    I’ve recently got into eating paua for example, thanks to a friend posting about how yummy they were and then another friend going diving for some and giving some to me. They were sooo good!

    Now I’m going to have to try cooking venison, which is something I’ve never done, even though we have Silverfern Farms just down the road from us. Hmmmm…must give it a try! 🙂

    • I have never cooked paua. I have to admit, it seems really daunting to me. My parents always did it in the pressure cooker. How do you cook them?

      • I marinated them for *hours* in a mix of red wine, garlic, ginger, oil, sesame oil, spring onions etc., then stir fried them and made the marinade into a sauce. Yummo! But the key apparently is marinading them, otherwise they can apparently be quite tough. Ours were very tender, btu we also cut them very finely.

  4. That does look lovely Genie. I’ve never had venison before but JT has and loved it. I love the simplicity of this fish too,

  5. It looks beautifully cooked. I love venison but never cook it at home as my husband doesn’t like the idea of eating deer. This makes me want to go out and get some anyway though!

  6. bojan131 says

    Nice, venison is great. I used to know someone who made venison sausages and they were perfect!

  7. Pingback: OGE October Round up! (English Only) |

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