Venison Pastrami Sandwich on Rye Recipe


For the Pastrami Brine

  • 1 quart water

  • 1 cup red wine

  • ¾ cup kosher salt

  • ½ cup brown sugar

  • 3 teaspoons pink Himalayan salt

  • 1 tablespoon pickling spice

  • ½ cup honey

  • 7 garlic cloves, crushed

  • ½ onion, sliced

  • 1 sprig thyme

  • 1 sprig sage

  • 2 quarts ice

For the Venison Pastrami

  • 2 quarts pastrami brine

  • 2 venison backstraps

  • ½ cup crushed black pepper

  • ½ cup crushed coriander seeds

For the Caramelized Onions

  • 3 large onions, peeled and sliced

  • 2 tablespoons butter

  • Salt

For Each Sandwich

  • 2 slices marbled rye bread

  • 3 oz. of venison pastrami

  • 1 tablespoon whole grain mustard

  • 1–2 slices Swiss cheese

  • ¼ cup caramelized onions

  • ¼ cup micro or baby greens


For the Brine: In a heavy bottom saucepot bring all ingredients (except the ice) to a boil. Boil for 10 minutes. Then pour over the ice and cool until the brine is ice cold.

For the Venison Pastrami: Clean the silver skin off the venison and cut each backstrap in half.

Place the backstrap in two separate gallon zip bags. Pour one quart of brine in each bag to cover the venison. Zip each bag tightly and refrigerate for 2 days.

Remove the venison from the brine and lay on paper towels to remove excess brine. Mix black pepper and coriander together and coat the back straps in the mixture. Set the backstraps on the counter for 30 minutes to bring to room temperature. Hot smoke the venison in a smoker (or on grill) until the internal temperature of the venison is 135 degrees. Remove the venison pastrami from the smoker and cool at room temperature for one hour. Wrap and refrigerate (or freeze) until ready to use.

For the Caramelized Onions: Place the butter and onions in a large skillet over medium-low heat. Sprinkle with salt. Saute for 20 minutes, stirring regularly, until dark and golden.

For the Pastrami Sandwiches: Toast the bread on both sides and smear with mustard. Slice the venison pastrami into thin slices. Warm the pastrami and onions in a pan. Pile the onions and pastrami on the bread and place the Swiss cheese over the meat, so the cheese melts. Top with micro greens and a second slice of bread. Enjoy with a glass of The Hunt.