Sporting Chef: Pheasant and Cashew Salad & Grilled Venison Thai Noodle Salad


Pheasant and Cashew Salad

1/3 cup mayonnaise

1/4 cup yogurt

1 tablespoon lemon juice

1/4 teaspoon black pepper

2 cups chopped, cooked pheasant, thigh meat

1/2 cup dry roasted cashews, chopped

1 stalk celery, chopped

2 tablespoons red onion, minced

1 teaspoon fresh rosemary leaves, minced

Hi Mountain Italian Herb Seasoning (or substitute Italian seasoning)

Julienned apple, tossed with lemon

Salt and pepper to taste

Red cabbage (for cups)

In a bowl, whisk together mayonnaise and yogurt, lemon juice and black pepper. Add pheasant and next five ingredients. Mix well to coat evenly with dressing. Fold in julienned apple. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

To serve, place in halved red cabbage leaves or atop lettuce. Makes 4 servings.

Grilled Venison Thai Noodle Salad

1 1/2 pounds venison loin, tenderloin or trimmed hindquarter

1 English cucumber, halved lengthwise, thinly sliced

1 red onion, thinly sliced

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Tomato wedges

Pinch or two of kosher salt and freshly ground pepper

1/2 cup fresh cilantro

Cooked noodles

(For Marinade and Dressing):

1 cup low-sodium soy sauce

1/4 cup orange juice concentrate

3 tablespoons fish sauce

2 tablespoons sesame oil

3 tablespoons olive oil

1 tablespoon sambal oelek (Asian chili sauce)

1 tablespoon cilantro

1 tablespoon mint leaves, minced

1 tablespoon fresh lime juice

2 1/2 cloves garlic

1 (1/2-inch-sized) piece ginger, peeled and sliced

Combine dressing/marinade ingredients and mix well. Divide mixture in half. Place venison in a non-reactive container or Ziploc plastic bag. Pour half of reserved marinade mixture over venison. Toss to coat. Refrigerate for 4 to 5 hours. Remove venison from marinade, place on a hot grill or skillet (or in a 250-degree smoker) and cook until the internal temperature is 135 to 140 degrees. Allow venison to cool. Slice across the grain into thin strips. In a large bowl, toss together sliced venison, cucumber, onion, tomato wedges, salt, pepper and most of reserved marinade, leaving a couple of tablespoons of marinade. Toss remaining marinade with the noodles. Mound the noodles on plates and spoon salad mixture over. Makes 4 servings.


Known as “The Sporting Chef,” Scott Leysath has been an executive chef for more than 20 years, and is a leading expert on cooking fish and game. Author of multiple cookbooks, including “The Sporting Chef’s Better Venison Cookbook,” he hosts “The Sporting Chef” and “Dead Meat” TV shows on Sportsman Channel.