The Essence of Life

The Essence of Life

Tuesday, December 1, 2015

My Middle Eastern Take On The Midwest

Getting ready!

Eating venison is one of the best, but not the only, reasons to spend countless hours in a blind or up in a tree stand like an overgrown and overweight squirrels that is afraid of heights in all kind of weathers, mostly bad.

After getting my deer on Opening Day for the first time in years, and for only the second time ever, I took the carcass of my deer to be processed by a butcher - in this case Gabe's in Maple City.

One of the key "side effects" of having your deer processed is that we end up with quite a bit of venison "burger", neatly packed in one pound bags, but the problem is that there are too many ways to perfectly ruin good venison in the ground former.

So in order to both put my venison "burger" to good use and pursue a culinary prowess for some years now I've been doing VENISON KAFTA.

Kafta is a type of meatloaf that is very popular throughout Northern Africa, the Middle East, Central Asia and India that is generally pressed around a wooden skewer so it is more easily managed on a grill.

As any regional and popular dish recipes vary according to country, city, restaurant or household, so the one I will present below is mine, or more precisely my middle eastern take on the greatest of the midwestern foods, whitetail deer venison.

  • 2 lbs ground venison
  • 1 large sweet yellow onion, finally chopped
  • 5 cloves of garlic, finally chopped
  • A large handful of fresh parsley, chopped
  • Fresh dill, chopped - as much as you like
  • 1 large cup of shelled salted pistachios, chopped
  • 2 table spoons of kosher salt
  • Mix all ingredients in a bow using your hands (please, wash them)
  • Wrap mixture around wooden skewers (I like my kafta "fat", so it doesn't dry while cooking)
  • Grill on a real grill using lump charcoal so you get all the flavor from the smoke that will caress the meat
  • Savor it with family and friends
This delicious dish can be either be served as an appetizer or as a main course and I have not yet met anyone that did not like it. Even my wife that does not like venison that much loves venison kafta.


  1. Quando preparo kafta aqui no Brasil eu uso carne de boi com um pouco de gordura ou misturo carne de porco com gordura, já o deer daí não tem muita gordura ,fica bom mesmo assim? Pela foto parece bem apetitosos.

  2. Eloir,

    Eu adcionei 25% de carne de porco gorda à carne de veado.



  3. Mmm, certainly looks good in that photo. Nothing quite as good as meat that you hunted, killed and prepared yourself!

  4. It definitely looks delicious. It must be tried as soon as possible!

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