Archive for the ‘Marinade / Brine’ Category

Bourbon Dijon Marinated Venison Steak & Citrus Hazelnut Asparagus

Posted on: by No Comments

Bourbon Dijon Marinated Venison Steak & Citrus Hazelnut Asparagus

Summer farmers markets and fantastic weather leave us no good reason to stay in climate controlled environments, whether it’s the year-round grocery store or your air-conditioned home. And if you don’t have AC, all the more reason to fire up the grill instead of the oven, and let the breeze cool you off rather than sitting in front of your fan.

This week’s venison steak and asparagus recipes were inspired by one of our favorite fellow recipe bloggers, Man Tested Recipes. The venison marinade has a sweeter style, almost teriyaki flavor to it from the brown sugar and soy sauce, and the bourbon tenderized the steak while bringing it’s own flavor profile that pairs deliciously with red meat. The asparagus was a hit with the smokey flavor from being charred on the grill, combined with the citrus and nutty flavors from the toppings added at the very end. Finish the plate off with some simple yet tasty pasta, and summertime dinner is served.




  • 1 lb. Whitetail venison steak
  • 1/4 c. Maker’s Mark (or your favorite other bourbon)
  • 1/4 c. honey-dijon mustard
  • 1/4 c. soy sauce
  • 1/4 c. brown sugar
  • 1 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
  • Freshly ground black pepper to taste



  • 2 large bunches asparagus, trimmed
  • 2 Tbs. Extra virgin olive oil (or enough to lightly coat asparagus)
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • Zest of 1/2 orange
  • 1/4 c. toasted hazelnuts, finely chopped



  • 1 lb. pasta (we used Cavatappi)
  • 1/4 c. grated parmesan cheese
  • 1 Tbs. butter
  • salt and pepper to taste


Venison Steak: In a 1-gallon Ziploc bag, combine bourbon, mustard, brown sugar, soy sauce, Worcestershire sauce, and pepper. Holding the top of the bag with one hand, squeeze the bottom of the bag with your other hand until all ingredients are evenly mixed. Add venison steak, seal, and keep in refrigerator for 24 hours, turning the steak over around the 12-hour mark for even marinating.

Heat your grill to medium-high. Remove steak from marinade and place on grill. Use the following cooking times as a guideline depending on the thickness of your steak: 2-3 min. per side for 1/2″ steak, 4-6 min. per side for 1″ steak, or 6-9 min. per side for 1.5″-2″ steak. When ready, remove steak from the grill and let sit for 5 minutes to let the juices settle before serving

Asparagus: Toss asparagus in olive oil until spears are lightly coated. Add salt and pepper as desired. Place spears on the grill over medium heat and cook for 5 minutes, turning spears until lightly charred. Remove from grill and add orange zest and hazelnuts, tossing slightly to mix ingredients. Serve.

Pasta: Boil pasta in salted water until al dente. Drain but do not rinse, and add pasta back to pot. Stir in butter, salt, pepper, and parmesan until evenly mixed. Serve.

Photos and Feedback:

These recipes were very flavorful and we would make them again. Dinner was paired with a bold, dry cabernet blend – Yum! Next time, we might swap out the honey-dijon for the regular kind considering there’s plenty of sweetness with the brown sugar. We thought the asparagus and pasta were just about perfect, so we wouldn’t alter those at all. If you’re not a huge fan of hazelnuts, tasty substitutions could be almonds, walnuts, or even sunflower seeds. Do you agree/disagree? Let us know, we’d love to hear!

We may love our venison, but we don’t skimp on our veggies!

Make sure you let the steak rest for a few minutes after it comes off the grill – the juices need to be reabsorbed otherwise the steak may taste dry.

Tossing the orange zest and hazelnuts with the asparagus fresh off the grill brings out the aromas and flavors of the garnishes.


The grilling time guidelines are very helpful if you don’t have a meat thermometer! We loved the way it turned out going by the clock.