Couscous Crusted Venison Skewers

Winner - 2011 New Zealand Guild Of Food Writers Venison Recipe Competition

We use New Zealand farmed venison medallions for our skewers – the meat is tender, lean and has a nice and subtle gamey flavour.


Recipe by Alan Tichall, Foodstyle media

The meat

Cut medallions across the grain to make large, bite-size chunks and neatly skewer. You can also use the whole medallion to encrust with the couscous and serve as an individual portion.

The spiced couscous 

Cook a small packet of couscous (mini pasta made from semolina flour and wheat flour) following the instructions on the back of the packet (much like a pasta) – instead of water you can use chicken stock for added flavour.

Mix in 1 tbsp of Moroccan spice seasoning to the cooled, cooked couscous. Add ½ cup of currants (optional). Make your own spice mixture, if you have the ingredients and the patience   – a minimum pre-ground mixture of: 1 tsp smoked paprika, 1 tsp ginger, 1 tsp cumin, ½ tsp cinnamon, 1 tsp coriander, 1 tsp chilli, and grated rind of 1 fresh lemon.

Flouring, egg wash and cold couscous mixture

Beat 2 egg yolks with 50ml of milk. Sprinkle a thick layer of plain flour on a flat plate. When ready to cook, roll venison skewers in the flour, beaten egg wash and then push into couscous mixture to make sure it sticks.  

Cooking crusted skewers

If you have one, use a deep-fat fryer on chip heat (190), or shallow-fry the skewers – they can be easily over-cooked so watch it. The idea is to brown the couscous coating while keeping the venison medium rare. It is very easy to overcook lean venison, which is an absolute no- no!


Cut telegraph cucumber lengthways into long thin strips with a vegetable peeler. Place in a bowl of ice water for an hour or so, to get them to curl.  Toss with other salad ingredients.


Juice and zest of 1 lemon, 1 finely chopped garlic clove, and ½ cup of olive oil - mix thoroughly and season to taste. Douse salad when ready to serve.

Yoghurt dip

Medium-size container of thick, unsweetened, Greek-style yoghurt – mix in 
zest of 1 lemon. Present in bowl as a condiment.


Serves 4

Preparation: 30 mins

Time to cook: 5 mins

Couscous Crusted Venison Skewers



1 telegraph cucumber

handful of cherry tomatoes cut in half

handful of black olives 

100 g feta cheese cut into chunks

handful of oven dry-roasted pine-nuts

bunch of fresh mint coarsely chopped


The Kebabs

400 g packet of venison medallions.

2 egg yolks

50ml milk

1 small packet couscous

4-6 bamboo skewers

1 Tbspn Moroccan spice seasoning


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