Recipe: Pronghorn Guisada

__ I’ve been blessed to be able to eat some pretty good meals in my life, from elk steaks in … Continued

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I’ve been blessed to be able to eat some pretty good meals in my life, from elk steaks in the high country to duck confit in fancy restaurants. But I have to say I enjoy nothing more than to sit down to a simple meal like this pronghorn guisada. A little meat, a few beans, and some tortillas–add in a couple cold beers to quench the heat and you’d be hard pressed to find me any happier.

A lot of recipes for guisada suggest cutting the meat in cubes, but I prefer to brown and braise whole round steaks, then slice them up just before serving. I feel you get a better fond–those crunchy brown bits stuck to the bottom of the pan–that way, which really amps up the meaty flavor of this spicy Tex-Mex stew.

However you decide to do it, guisada is great for those tougher cuts of meat from the shoulder or rear ham. The long, simmering braise breaks down the chewy fibers, creating meat that practically melts in your mouth. And don’t worry if you don’t have pronghorn. This works great with any type of venison. But if you do have some antelope cuts in the freezer, treat yourself with this dish.

Pronghorn Guisada

Ingredients:

-4 pronghorn antelope steaks
-2 Tbsp. vegetable oil, plus one
-Kosher salt
-2 Tbsp. flour
-½ tsp. cumin
-½ tsp. onion powder
-½ tsp. paprika
-½ medium onion, sliced
-2 Tbsp. brown sugar
-2 Tbsp. Worcestershire sauce
-½ cup Guinness (or any dark beer)
-½ cup vegetable stock
-3 chipotle peppers in adobo sauce, chopped
-3-5 jalapeño peppers, sliced ¼-inch thick
-1 14.5-oz. can diced tomatoes

**Directions: **

1. Liberally salt both sides of the steaks. Using a meat tenderizer, rolling pin, or the flat side of a heavy butcher knife, pound the steaks to ¼ inch thick and let the meat rest 10 minutes. Pat dry with paper towels.

2. Whisk together the flour, cumin, onion powder, and paprika. Dust the antelope steaks with the seasoned flour.

3. Heat 2 Tbsp. of the oil in a pan over medium-high heat. When the oil is shimmering, add the steaks and fry for 6 to 8 minutes, flipping once halfway through. Remove the steaks from the oil to a paper-towel lined plate.

4. Transfer the sliced onions and a pinch of salt to the pan, adding additional oil if necessary, and saute until translucent, about 3 to 5 minutes. Sprinkle brown sugar over the onions, stirring to coat. Deglaze the pan with a few dashes of Worcestershire, scraping up any browned bits.

5. Return steaks to the pan, along with next five ingredients. Lower the heat to a simmer, cover, and cook for 1 ½ to 2 hours, until meat is tender. Remove the lid, raise the heat, and simmer for 30 minutes, or until the sauce is reduced by half.

6. Serve with tortillas, ranch beans, and lime wedges.