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Grilled venison with side of grilled polenta & vegetables

Venison is a kind of meat that I have never tried in Italy and I first found out about it only a couple of years ago at a Christmas party in London. I have always been very curious about food and I have always been keen to try something new, so I had a kind of venison pie and I must admit I really liked it.

This year, I decided to try and cook it myself but I wasn't sure on how to do it properly so I did some research online and I opted for a grilled version, which is apparently the better way of enjoying it.

For those like me who don't know what it is exactly, Google helps as per usual: the word venison derives from the Latin word venor, meaning “to hunt or pursue.”

Following the invasion and the establishment of the Royal Forests, any hunted animal was calledvenison” after it was killed; because more deer were hunted than any other animal, the name stuck.

Venison Tenderloin is the cut that I am cooking today and it is the back-end, which is the most tender of all cuts.

I love having polenta in the winter, so I usually make a portion more to reuse it after.

I cooked some at lunchtime and then left it in a bowl in the fridge for 3 hours.

Grilled polenta brings me back to amazing memories: my grandmother used to light the fire in the morning and when there were only embers left in the evening, she would grill the leftovers of the cooked polenta on it.

Afterwards, she would slice some cheese and put it immediately on the hot grilled polenta so it all melted. It was the simplest yet the most delicious winter meal ever!

Tools needed:

-A cast iron grill pan

-Aluminium foil


-Two venison steaks

-A courgette

-A potato

-A bowl of cooked polenta (better if it is cold from the fridge)


-Lurpark butter

-Truffle oil

-Fresh garlic

-Put a cast iron grill pan on high heat and let it warm it up for 5 minutes.

-Clean and peel the skin off the vegetables. Slice the vegetables: courgettes should be cut quite thick as they burn easily, while potatoes should be thinner because they take more time to cook, therefore they should go first on the grill.

Grill the veggies first and set aside in a tray. Season them with chopped fresh garlic, a drizzle of oil and some sea salt and pepper. Cover with some foil.

-Slice the polenta (not too thin or it will break) and place it on the hot grill. When it is done set aside and season it only with salt and pepper.

-Last but not least, place the room temperature venison steaks on the hot grill. A couple of minutes per side will be enough for a perfect medium rare.

-Right after place the steaks in some foil too and season them with salt and pepper and add some salted Lurpark butter. Close the foil around it and let the meat rest for 8 minutes in the packets.

-After that you can either slice the meat and place on a dish or put it directly in a plate with the grilled veggies. Add a last touch of truffle oil, which will intensify the rich taste of the meat and enjoy with a glass of a good red wine.

Have you ever tried venison? What is your favourite way of cooking it?

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