Here is another appetizer that could be eaten as a main dish. Elk or Venison are a wonderful alternative to Beef. They are a much leaner source of protein and have a greater protein-to-fat ratio compared to boneless-skinless chicken breasts. You can find Elk or Venison at specialty butcher shops – I get mine from The Healthy Butcher.
Sauce (This recipe is from Son of Grok – SoG Zesty BBQ Sauce) – It’s a great recipe because you can modify the consistency with the texture of your onion/garlic and the amount of stock that you add. I made this one more smooth by mincing the garlic and onion and adding more stock. Here is the formula I used:
Ingredients (Makes about 4 Cups)
– 1 6oz can tomato paste (preferable organic)
– 2 Cups beef stock
– 3 Cloves Garlic – minced
– .5 of an onion – minced
– 2 tablespoons Dijon mustard (i used a spicy garlic dijon that added a bit of a kick)
– 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
– 1 tablespoon Extra Virgin Olive Oil (EVOO)
– 1 teaspoon sea salt
– 2 tablespoons chili powder
– 1 sprinkle of cinnamon (1 tsp)
- Combine all ingredients in a saucepan. Stir together well.
- Bring it to a simmer and let it sit for 20-30 minutes. Stirring occasionally.
Mini-Elk Meatballs (makes about 18 -24 meatballs)
– 1.5 Lb of Ground Elk or Venison
– 1 onion – minced (almost pureed – you don’t want chunks because otherwise the meatballs will fall apart)
– 1 Tbsp minced garlic
– 1/4 C chopped parsley
– 2 tsp tomato paste
– 1 Egg
– 1/4 C almond flour
– 1 tsp ground red chili’s to spice it up
– salt & pepper to taste
– 2-3 Tbsp olive oil (to use in the pan)
- In a large bowl, mix together all ingredients (except olive oil). Mixing by hand works best.
- In a large non-stick skillet, heat olive oil – enough to thoroughly cover the pan
- Use a Tbsp to scoop out meat and roll into a meatball. Repeat. Place them in the pan. Cook for about 3-4 minutes.
- Gentley (I repeat…GENTLEY – these guys are fragile) flip the meatballs to cook the other sides. In total, they take about 8 minutes to cook around (depending on their size). You can get a feeling for when they are done cooking by pressing down on them to see if they’ve firmed up.
- If you’re doing multiple batches, add more olive oil to the pan in between batches.
- Pour some of the Sauce on top of the meatballs and serve.