There is something that it so perfect about the pairing of venison and mushrooms, so I knew exactly how I wanted to prepare our elk chops for dinner this week. Since elk is so incredibly lean, I decided that I could add plenty of butter and really bring out the richness of the meat. The fresh thyme helps to brighten the flavors and really plays well with the earthy flavors of this dish. I served this with a loaf of crusty french bread and a bottle of wine. What more could a person need? The best part is this dish is ready in 20 minutes and cleaning cast iron is a breeze!
Butter Basted Elk Chops and Mushrooms
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 tablespoons butter
16 ounces sliced mushrooms
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon cracked black pepper
4 cloves garlic, fresh, minced
8 elk chops, sizes can vary
1 teaspoon kosher salt
3/4 teaspoon cracked black pepper
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
6 tablespoons butter
3-4 sprigs of fresh thyme or 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
Season elk chops on both sides with salt, pepper, and garlic powder. Set aside. Heat heavy skillet on the stove and melt the butter and oil. Add mushrooms salt and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally over high heat until mushrooms have reduced in size and are starting to turn golden brown on the edges, about 5-7 minutes. Add the fresh garlic and cook for an additional 3 minutes or until garlic is fragrant and no longer smelling raw. Remove the mushrooms from the pan and add elk chops in single layer. Sear for 3-4 minutes on the first side depending on the size of the chops. The elk will release from the pan on it’s own when it is ready to flip and will have nice brown sear marks. Flip the elk to the other side and add the butter and fresh thyme into the pan. Let the butter melt all around the elk chops. Once the butter starts to foam, tilt the pan to make the butter pool to one edge and spoon the butter over the top of the elk chops, placing the pan onto the burner as needed to keep the butter hot. Continue this for about 1-2 minutes. Turn heat off and add the cooked mushrooms back into the pan. Stir mushrooms into the butter just until they are warm again. Let rest for 4-5 minutes before serving.
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