Bacon-wrapped Venison Tenderloins

It has been quite a while since I've posted a recipe. Maybe you thought I'd stopped eating and cooking? Almost! But not quite.

I made myself this meal last night--yup, all for me!--and when I looked down at my plate, I thought: here's a dinner I should share. Not literally, of course. (I snarfed that whole plate!) Just visually.
The complete entree included bacon-wrapped venison tenderloins, pan-roasted Brussels sprouts, and shitake mushrooms. Believe it or not, this was a very easy, quick dinner to throw together. And if you're attempting to go Paleo or even on Whole 30, this meal is compliant. (Just check to make sure your bacon is sugar-free.)

We are so lucky to have a friend who hunts on our land and shares his bounty in return. This venison was about as local as you can get! The tenderloins are pretty small--hence my ability to eat two of them!--and extremely lean. The bacon adds much needed fat as well as flavor. The only other ingredients I used were a pinch of salt on the veggies and a sprinkle of black pepper over everything.

Start with a heavy, cast iron skillet. Heat the pan over a medium flame. Wrap the the venison tenderloins each in one slice of bacon and lay them into the hot pan. Let them sizzle for a few minutes, until the fat begins to render from the bacon. Swirl the fat around to cover the pan, then add the brussells sprouts and shitakes around the meat. When the first side is golden brown, flip the meat over. Shake the pan to move the veggies around so they also brown on several sides. Cover the pan for a couple of minutes to help retain the heat and allow the veggies to steam just a bit.

The meat does not take long at all to cook, and you do not want to overcook venison! You want the interior to be pink and moist. So poke the tenderloins gently with a finger every minute or so. They should NOT feel too firm. I cooked mine a little bit over 5 minutes, but less than 10. Remove the meat from the pan and place on a plate to rest. Resting the meat allows the juices to be reabsorbed. Season the veggies with salt and pepper. Poke a fork into the largest brussells sprout to make sure it has cooked all the way through. If so, remove your veggies from the pan and serve dinner.