The Story Behind the Food
These Spanish-inspired, spice crusted backstrap bites are amazing. I had a pork version of them in Santiago de Compostela in northwest Spain. Every time I make this recipe, whether with antelope or venison, it brings me back to sitting and enjoying this dish outside a tapas bar next to Alameda Park in the heart of the city.
My first North Dakota pronghorn antelope was a buck taken on Saturday, October 2, 2015. I remember it vividly. The buck was standing with a doe in a soybean field that had just been harvested. They were 320 yards away, which is not the best shot to take with a side wind gusting between 40 to 45 mph. But I killed him with one shot, got to him quickly, processed the meat, and got it on ice right away. It was the weeks that followed when I decided antelope was my favorite of all wild game meats. And since that day, I have helped hunt, process, and prepare 18 of these animals for people to enjoy around the dinner table.
- 1 pound pronghorn antelope backstrap
- 1 teaspoon each cumin, coriander, paprika, salt, pepper
- 1 Tablespoon lemon juice
- 1 Tablespoon honey
- 1 Tablespoon minced garlic
- 1 Tablespoon avocado oil or olive oil
- 1 Tablespoon butter
1. Trim silver skin off of backstrap, prepared with meat tenderizer, and cut into 1-inch pieces. In a bowl mix cumin, coriander, paprika, salt and pepper. Add backstrap pieces to spice mixture and toss to coat well. Press spice mixture into meat so no spice mix is wasted. Let it sit at room temperature for 30 minutes.
2. Meanwhile, in another bowl, mix lemon juice, honey, and garlic and set aside.
3. In a large skillet over high heat, add oil and meat and cook for about 2 minutes until brown. Add butter and use tongs to flip and cook meat in butter another 2 minutes. Transfer cooked meat into bowl with mixture of lemon juice, honey, and garlic. Toss and coat evenly, and transfer to serving platter.
4. Sprinkle with your choice of fresh herbs, like oregano or parsley. Serve with lemon wedges and Naan bread.