Sweet and Sour Antelope Meatballs

Recipe by Editor in Chief J. Townsend.

Antelope (aka, Pronghorn) is one game meat that is light in appearance but is also strong in flavor if not handled correctly. This begins with the processing and moves forward with its preparation. This particular antelope was provided to me by my good friend Jeremiah who runs From Field to Plate. Jeremiah has perfected a butchering process which eliminates much of the distasteful flavors which many people associate with antelope. There is a different “gameyness”, as some people call it found in this meat, but I find it enjoyable with hints of sage and earthy tones.

When preparing any meat, you can either try to mask the natural flavors or enhance them through proper pairing of ingredients. In this particular case, I choose the route of paring my flavors. The sage mixes well with the onion, garlic, and ginger. The citrus, chili flakes, and soy sauce give it a genuine “pop” when you bite into each meatball. When plated over rice, these meat balls make a smooth and flavorful combination which makes me truly appreciate the hard work put into the harvesting and processing.

Antelope Meatballs

Ingredients:

  • 2 lbs ground antelope
  • ¼ yellow onion, finely minced
  • 3 cloves of garlic, finely minced
  • 1 tbsp of grated fresh ginger
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp of ground black pepper
  • 1 egg
  • ¼ cup panko

Preparation:

  1. Mix all the ingredients together in a large mixing bowl
  2. Form into meatballs which a slightly smaller than a golf ball
  3. Bring a large cast iron pan to high heat and then reduce to medium high heat
  4. Brown the meatballs in the pan

Sweet and Sour Sauce

Ingredients:

  • 2 tbsp cornstarch
  • 2 tbsp cool water
  • 1 ¼ cup pineapple juice
  • 2/3 cup rice or white vinegar
  • ½ cup brown sugar
  • 2 tbsp honey
  • 4 tbsp ketchup
  • 2 tbsp soy sauce
  • 2 tsp chili sauce (Sriracha)

Preparation:

  1. Whisk the cornstarch and the water together and set aside
  2. Combine the pineapple juice, vinegar, brown sugar, ketchup, honey, soy sauce, and Sriracha in a sauce pan and bring to a boil
  3. Whisk in the cornstarch/water mixture
  4. Reduce heat and simmer until the sauce will amply coat a spoon, approximately 3 minutes
  5. Place the meatballs in a large bowl and coat with the sauce

Serve the meatballs over rice garnished with sesame seeds and scallions

Sweet and Sour Pronghorn Meatballs

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