Steak and potatoes: there are few combinations that fill a hunter’s belly faster and easier. Luckily, there are endless variations to keep these staples fresh and fun. Consider the following recipe a foundation for meals you can serve over and over with different accents, sauces, garnishes and condiments.
1-1 ½ lbs. ground elk
1 tbsp butter
1 tbsp olive oil
1 med onion, diced small
2 stalks of celery, diced small
1 tbsp minced garlic
½ cup dried breadcrumbs
3-4 tbsp ketchup
splash of your favorite hot sauce
4 tbsp shredded Parmesan cheese
salt and pepper to taste
dusting of your favorite dry rub
Assorted fresh garden herbs, cheeses, pesto, barbeque sauce, flavored aioli or mayonnaise, remoulade, savory jellies, flavored mustards, caramelized onions or chilies.
Place the whole red potatoes in a pot of cold salted water and slowly bring to a simmer. Cook for about five minutes or until about halfway done. Remove from the water and allow to cool.
In a large sauté pan heat the butter and olive oil and sauté the garlic, onions and celery until wilted. Remove to cool.
Place the ground elk in a large mixing bowl and add the eggs, ketchup, breadcrumbs, hot sauce, cheese and cooled sautéed vegetables. Mix well; keep cold while you prepare the potatoes.
Cut the cooled potatoes in half. Season with salt and pepper and dust them with a little parmesan cheese. This is for flavor as well as helping the meat to adhere. Use a teaspoon to scoop out a divot from the center to create a small well. Scoop out roughly one ounce of meat filling (a small ice cream scoop works very well for this). Scoop out 30 small balls and roll them in your hands like you would for meatballs.
Place the meat on top of the potatoes and insert a toothpick through the meat and into the potatoes. Dust the top of the meat with your favorite dry rub (optional) and place into a 350° F preheated oven for about 15 minutes or until the meat is golden brown.
Remove the tray from the oven and allow it to sit for a couple of minutes before serving. At this point you can remove the toothpicks and garnish.
These little buckets of goodness are perfect for a cocktail party or to just have in the fridge for a quick snack. You can make this recipe ahead of time and reheat as needed, eliminating the dreaded holiday stress of feeding a crowd!