If your people do not like shrooms, then add more butter and liquids to make the steak sauce and hold back the fungi. Everybody’s happy!
Ingredients (serves 4)
Eight small steaks (elk and deer backstraps are about 4″ across)
coarse black pepper
1 small onion, finely minced (1/3 C)
1/2 stick butter
1 pound brown Crimini (Italian) shrooms: rinse, drain and chop to 1/4″ bits
1/4 C roughly chopped Italian parsley
3/4 C white wine (fruity)
3/4 C chicken broth or chicken stock
1/4 C Worcestershire sauce
1/2 T paprika
2/3 T cumin
Cooking the steaks:
Cut your filets at 3/4 inch to 1″ thick.
With flat pan or a kitchen hammer, pound very coarsely ground black pepper and kosher salt into each side. Flatten the steaks to tenderize and speed cooking.
Film a hot skillet with corn oil (or grape seed which can take the heat). Sear the steaks for 2 minutes on each side in a HOT skillet. Don’t crowd them so the water that escapes will boil off instantly. Make a crust on each side that holds in the moisture. Will be rare inside to medium rare. (Well done venison is tough like jerky) Set steaks aside on a plate.
Simple Reduction Sauce:
Rinse and drain the shooms, chop to 1/4″ bits. Mince a small onion. Rough-chop 1/4 C parsley.
In the same large saute pan or iron skillet that you cook the steaks, at medium heat, drain off the fat. Add onion and mix with the bit of fat that remains. Add butter and mix in the shrooms. Saute until they are 1/2 cooked, maybe 3 minutes.
Add 3/4 C fruity wine and deglaze the pan with scraping action. Add 3/4 C chicken stock, Worcestershire sauce, and parsley. Reduce the sauce to about 1/3 original volume. Add cumin and paprika. It needs to be runny still.
Put the steaks back in this pan and spoon the sauce over the top to baste — this will warm the steaks over medium to med-low heat. Does it need salt? Cook for 4 minutes.
If you like, you can cover lightly with shredded cheddar and broil ’til golden.
Plate the steaks with the sauce on top. Crispy green beans make a good side. Of course, the sauce goes great on a baked potato.