surf and turf

Alaska Surf and Turf

By Marcus Weiner

This surf and turf recipe Serves 4

This is the beginning of a series of Surf-and-Turf recipes that feature Alaska fish and game. This one pairs the bold flavor of blacktail deer backstrap with the buttery deliciousness of Dungeness crab. The crab cake has few fillers to allow the crab to shine. Sautéed asparagus makes for a nice accompaniment.


Crab cake
  • 3/4 lb cooked Dungeness crab meat
  • 1 egg
  • 1/4 c mayo
  • 1 tbsp chopped fresh parsley
  • 1 tbsp Dijon mustard
  • 1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
  • 1/8 tsp salt
  • 1/8 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 2/3 c panko breadcrumbs
  • 1 tsp lemon juice
  • Non-stick cooking spray
  • 1 pound asparagus stalks
  • 1 tbsp butter
  • 1 tsp olive oil
  • Salt and pepper
Deer steak
  • 1 lb chunk of deer backstrap
  • 1 tbsp canola oil
  • Salt and pepper


Crab cake

Mix all ingredients, except crab and panko, in a bowl. Gently fold in crab and panko. Place in refrigerator overnight to blend flavors. Preheat oven to 450°F. Line a cookie sheet with aluminum foil and apply cooking spray. Using a ½ cup as a form, create 4 crab cakes and place on the cookie sheet. Bake for 15 minutes.


Cut the woody, bottom 2 inches off each stalk. Then cut each remaining stalk in half. Heat olive oil on medium in a sauté pan. Add asparagus, cover and cook for 5 minutes. Turn off heat, add butter, salt, and pepper. Roll asparagus around in the melted butter to coat each piece.

Deer backstrap

Liberally apply salt and pepper to the backstrap. Place a lidded pan on medium-high heat and add canola oil. I favor a 6-quart Dutch oven. When the oil is hot, sear backstrap on both sides, approximately 4 minutes per side for medium-rare steak. Remove from pan, tent in aluminum foil, and let rest for 10 minutes.

To serve:

Cut the backstrap into ½-inch medallions. On your choice of plate, place one crab cake, ¼ of the asparagus stalks and ¼ of the backstrap.

More Alaska Surf and Turf recipes are coming.
In the meantime, check out Hunt Alaska’s full recipe library for more game recipes.