I frequently hear how people plan on “hunting” for their food in a crisis or they are stocking up on the fruits of their present hunting endeavors but seem to be finding it difficult to make creative dishes. So I thought I’d provide one of my go-to methods for cooking elk or venison. I 

elkwill also add that this recipe is surprisingly good over salmon cakes. (I know! Who knew that salmon and cranberries got along so well?!)  I adapted this recipe from one I found in an old cookbook of a famous restaurant in Denver, CO. Anyway, I hope you enjoy it too.


Game Medallions in a Cranberry Cream Sauce

1 t. sea salt (fine is better)

1 t. lemon zest

1 T. ground black pepper

12 2-ounce game medallions such as elk or venison

2 T. butter

½ cup of whole cranberry sauce

1 t. grated ginger

1 t. chopped green onion (freeze-dried is fine)

1 t. serrano chili—found in jars in the Hispanic food section of your grocery store

1/3 cup red wine or red wine vinegar

1/3 cup chicken broth

¾ cup of reconstituted sour cream, whole milk, or cream (I just use the powdered non-dairy creamer sold in the big containers at Sam’s Club)

4 cups of cooked rice (jasmine or brown rice is my favorite)


cast iron skilletAt least a 12 inch cast iron skillet over medium-high heat.
Combine the sea salt, lemon zest, and pepper and rub it on each of the medallions, on both sides. (Be sure your medallions are patted dry before doing this step.)

Melt the butter in the skillet and then gently place the medallions in the skillet; don’t crowd them. Sear on both sides to medium rare. (If you need to do this in batches, set the cooked medallions aside.) Set aside medallions on a clean plate to rest and restore their natural juices.
Put the red wine in the skillet to deglaze the fond for a moment then add the cranberry sauce, ginger, green onion, and Serrano chilies. Simmer for about 5 minutes to reduce and blend the seasonings together.

Add the cream and simmer another 5 minutes. The sauce should be a medium-thick texture which will cling to the protein.
Add the medallions and any juices to the skillet and the sauce and let simmer for 1 minute.
Serve warm over your choice of rice.


Andrea · April 26, 2013 at 3:41 am

My husband is big into hunting here in CO, and he has gotten me hooked too! We have elk in our freezer right now. I’ll have to try this. Thanks! I’m wondering how it would do with canned game though. I haven’t canned any yet, but I learned how to can meat with Zaycon chicken 🙂 and I would like to try game now too.

Rachel Matthews · April 26, 2013 at 11:57 am

Kellene, I’m am interesting in getting a American canner and I’m not sure which one to purchase. I have a glass top stove and was interested in the 30 quart or 41.5 quart but I’m not sure about weight issuses being to heavy. I know you use this pressure canner and I’m not sure which quart size you have, but being that you have experience with this canner on a glass stove maybe you could help me with weight issuses. I would just like to be able to can more at a time. Thanks for any advice in advance.

Marty Carpenter Meeker · April 26, 2013 at 3:55 pm

This recipe made my mouth water! We are unable to hunt large game any longer due to our age and our health. Also that fact creates possible future problems for us if meat supplies dry up. I think we would be limited to small game that we could trap.

Thanks for the recipe and your on-going dedication to the cause.

Kellene Bishop · April 26, 2013 at 7:13 pm

Rachel, in the future I’d encourage you to use the Search Bar feature and look for the topic you’re interested in because it’s very likely that I’ve already answered such a question, but also, when the question is asked on an article that isn’t relevant to the article it makes it so that I still have to take the time to address the question but no one else gets to benefit from that time. When we first started out, that was fine, but now that I’m having to sift through literally hundreds of e-mails daily, my time is at a premium.
As noted on each pressure canning and cooking article I’ve posted, the glass top stove does not impact the safety and usability of pressure canning so long as such a stove isn’t a first generation model. The only problems I’ve had was y overhang for the lights/venting getting in the way of the height of the canner. As such, I use the 921 model on my glasstop and the 941 on my turkey fryer burner outside. Hope that helps.

Kellene Bishop · April 26, 2013 at 7:14 pm

We have several readers and Facebook fans who can their game meat all year round.

jan · April 27, 2013 at 5:40 pm

kellene ~ in your recipe you said you use the powdered cream they sell in the big containers at sams club ~ are you talking about the non-dairy creamer? or the powdered non-fat dry milk? or do they really sell powdered cream? thanks.

Kellene Bishop · April 27, 2013 at 11:48 pm

The non-dairy creamer. Thanks. I’ll clarify that in the article.

Jan · April 28, 2013 at 2:17 am

I have one package of tenderloin and about 25 packs of ground elk left from last fall. I’ll try this with the tenderloin.

The more I read about our traditional (read: multi-nationals trying to make money [a traditional system would be “real” food]) food system, the more outraged/angrier/sadder I get. I buy/grow/raise as close to organic and natural as possible – and I get the feeling you are like that, too. That being said, have you ever read the ingredients list on non-dairy creamer? Fake food and full of GMOs from the corn/soy/canola.

Kellene Bishop · April 28, 2013 at 4:35 pm

I follow the 80/20 rule. 80% of the calories on my plate have to be absolutely premium kind of health, 20%–not. If you can find a solution short of having one’s own dairy cow to create cream with that’s shelf-stable, then I’m all ears. Furthermore, I don’t believe in superimposing MY preferences for food on others.

Virginia Gardner · July 23, 2013 at 2:34 am

Kellene, I searched “ginger” and this was the first post to pop up. I was wondering if you store ginger root in vodka. I was thinking of doing just that, pulling a vacuum on the jar.

Kellene Bishop · July 23, 2013 at 2:41 am

I dry ginger coins and store them vacuum sealed in jars and I also pickle ginger. Either way is wonderful and the “pickled ginger juice” is wonderful for other recipes too!

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