RECIPE: Joe Rogan, Appalachian Huntsman backstrap

Two different styles of backstrap, two delicious meals for any occasion

Although the holidays are long gone, I’d like to share with you a staple recipe you can whip up in less than an hour and impress your guests as if you’ve been cooking it all day for any occasion. 

The best part is, with these two rubs, you can either make it your next holiday centerpiece or a barbecue delicacy. One look at the headline and you probably guessed what cut of meat we’ll be working with, but if you’re new to the venison game we’ll be using, in my opinion, the best meat on a deer: the backstrap. 

Preparation: 

The Joe Rogan reverse sear with jalapeño butter

1. Mix your spice blend in a bowl and set aside. Then, mix your butter ingredients in a separate bowl, cover with cling wrap and set aside. If you aren’t going to use the butter for a while, put it in the fridge and remove it 30 minutes prior to use so it returns to room temperature.

2. Regardless if you’re using an oven or smoker, preheat to 250 degrees.

3. Once preheated, put seasoned meat into the oven for 45 minutes. Once in the oven for more than 30 minutes, check the meat’s internal temperature frequently to make sure you reach 125-130 degrees. If you desire more well-done meat, cook longer. Medium cooked venison is 130-135 degrees, medium well is 135-145 degrees and well done is 145-155 degrees. For the best taste, medium rare is the best temperature.

4. Get a cast-iron skillet hot. Melt lard or butter in the skillet and add the meat, searing each side for 2 minutes. Once seared, pull out and put on a cutting board. Let rest for 5 minutes. Slice the meat 1 inch thick. 

5. Soften butter in microwave for 10-20 seconds. Spoon butter over top of meat. This can be served with roasted veggies, such as carrots or squash or can be a standalone appetizer. 

The Appalachian Huntsman with broccoli and mashed potatoes 

  1. Preheat oven or smoker to 250 degrees. 
  2. Cut the potatoes into 2-inch cubes. Cut the bottoms off of the broccoli. Finely chop chives. Mince the garlic. Rub the loin with the Appalachian Huntsman spice rub and set aside. 
  3. Once oven is at 250 degrees, put the seasoned meat in the oven for 45 minutes. See directions above for meat cooking past medium rare.
  4. Bring a salted pot of water to a rolling boil. Make sure you have enough water to cover the potatoes by roughly 2 inches. 
  5. Once the water is boiling, add the potatoes. Cook 15 minutes or until tender enough for a fork to easily pierce a cube. 
  6. As potatoes are about to finish boiling, steam broccoli until bright green. Set broccoli in a medium sized bowl and toss with salt, pepper, minced garlic and red chili flakes. 
  7. Drain potatoes and return to pot, reserving 1/4 cup of the potato liquid. In a saucepan, melt butter and add whipping cream until warm. If not your desired consistency, add the potato liquid until satisfied. At the same time, begin heating up a cast iron skillet.
  8. Pour butter-cream mixture over potatoes and mash. Add half the chives and mix in. Add remaining chives as garnish. Wipe out the pan. 
  9. Heat a small amount of oil in the saucepan. Once shimmering, add broccoli and cook roughly 5 minutes until tender but still crunchy. Once done, add a knob of butter and melt. 
  10. Once meat is done, melt lard or butter in the hot skillet and add meat, searing each side for 2 minutes. Add the sprig of rosemary on top of the meat, transferring into the pan while flipping the meat and then back on top of the loin. While searing, slightly tilt pan and spoon butter or lard over top of the meat. Make sure you get every side. 
  11. Once seared, pull out and put on a cutting board. Let rest for 5 minutes. Slice the meat half an inch thick and serve with broccoli and mashed potatoes. 

Ingredients

The Joe Rogan

1 large backstrap

Enough lard or unsalted butter for searing

The rub: 

4 tbsp smoked paprika

2 tbsp brown sugar

2 tbsp of cayenne powder

2 tbsp of onion powder

1 1/2 tbsp ground cinnamon

2 tsp of garlic powder

2 tsp ground black pepper

2 tsp kosher salt

1 tsp dried basil

1 tsp dried oregano 

1 tsp dried thyme

1 tsp dried cilantro 

The butter:

1 stick unsalted butter, brought to room temperature

1 1/2 jalapeño, seeded and chopped to your desired size

2 cloves of garlic, minced

The Appalachian Huntsman

The meat:

1 large backstrap

1 packet of Appalachian Huntsman Bat Boy spice rub

The veggies:

1 large head of broccoli 

4 cloves of garlic, minced

2 lbs. Yukon gold potatoes 

1 stick of unsalted butter

1/2 heavy whipping cream

2 tbsp chives

1 tsp salt

1 tsp black pepper

1 tsp red chili flakes

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Andrew Spellman

A West Virginia University Reed College of Media alum, Andrew has a deep passion for his field of work. He is currently a sports and outdoors writer for The Dominion Post in Morgantown, WV, and a current issues and affairs writer for Project Upland. He also runs his blog, Hill & Holler, on the side.

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