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Seriously Good Venison

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A recipe for St David's Day

For the Welsh Rarebit


Ingredients

50g/2oz flour
50g/2oz butter
250ml/9oz strong beer, warmed
250g/9oz strong cheddar, grated
2tsp English mustard
2 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
black pepper

Preparation method

In a small saucepan melt the butter and make a roux with the flour. Cook for a couple of minutes, stirring to prevent the roux from burning. Stir in the warm beer by degrees, until you have a thick but smooth sauce. Add the grated cheese and stir until melted. You should now have a thick paste. Mix in the mustard and Worcestershire sauce and season well with black pepper. Set aside to cool

For the burgers

Ingredients

4 Veniburgers (TM)
2 Rolls of your choice ( I used Scottish morning rolls )
2 Spring Onions

Preparation Method

Take 2 of the Veniburgers (TM) and a heaped teaspoon of the cooled Welsh Rarebit and place a dollop in the middle of one of the burgers. Place the other burger on top and gently push down to flatten the burgers and squash them together. Gently pinch all the way around the edges of the burgers to seal them together. Place both burgers in a frying pan on a medium heat with a little olive oil. Fry gently for about 6–8 minutes (you do not want the heat to be too high as the filling will get too hot too quickly and explode from the burgers). Meanwhile set the grill to a medium heat. Do not flip the burgers, instead transfer them to a tray underneath the grill, again making sure the heat is not set too high. Finish the burgers off for another 6-8 minutes. Meanwhile slice the buns in half and thinly slice the spring onions. Take some more of the Welsh Rarebit and spread onto the bottom half of the buns and sprinkle with the spring onions. Pop both the top and bottom of the buns inside-up under the grill and lightly toast.

Serve the burgers with home made chips, salad and a fruity chutney.

The savoury Welsh Rarebit goes so well with the venison and the oozing creaminess is really decadent.

A real grown-up burger :)












meatloaf

I pinched the basis of this recipe from the Jamie Oliver magazine, but have tweaked it slightly by using a mixture of venison mince and sausagemeat as well as a few other changes. Absolutely delicious.

1 onion, finely chopped
Olive oil
2 tspn Garam Masala
100g Breadcrumbs
2 heaped tsp dijon mustard
250g Seriously Good Value Venison Mince
250g Seriously Good Sausagemeat
1 large egg
2 fresh rosemary sprigs
6 Sage leaves Shredded
12 slices of smoked bacon or pancetta
1 lemon, cut into wedges
1 onion diced
2 red peppers diced
Olive oil
2 garlic cloves, sliced
1 – 2 red chillies (to taste), finely sliced
1 tsp smoked paprika
2 tbsp worcestershire sauce
2 x 400g tins of chopped tomatoes
2 tbsp balsamic vinegar

Preheat the oven to full whack.

Place the onion in a large frying pan over a medium-high heat with 2 glugs of olive oil and season. Add the garam masala and fry, stirring every 30 seconds, for around 7 minutes or until softened and lightly golden.

Remove to a large bowl to cool.
Add the breadcrumbs to the bowl of onion with the, mustard, mince and sausagemeat.

Crack in the egg and add a really good pinch of salt and pepper. With clean hands, scrunch and mix up well.
Move the meat mixture to a board, then pat and mould it into a large, rugby-ball shape and rub over a little oil.

Lay the strips of pancetta over the meatloaf. You can either cook it now or put it on a plate, cover, and refrigerate until needed.

If cooking now, place the meatloaf in a casserole-type pan or baking dish, put it in the preheated oven then immediately reduce the temperature to 200C/gas 6 and cook for half an hour.

Meanwhile, for the sauce, place the onion in a large frying pan on a medium-high heat with 2 glugs of olive oil and a pinch of salt and pepper.

Then add the peppers and fry for a few more minutes, then add the garlic, chilli and paprika and cook for around 7 minutes, stirring every 30 seconds, until softened and lightly golden.

Add the Worcestershire sauce, tomatoes and balsamic vinegar, bring to the boil, then reduce the heat and simmer for 10 minutes. Taste the sauce and season if needed.

To finish and serve your meatloaf, put the rosemary and sage leaves in a bowl. Remove the meatloaf from the oven and pour all the fat from the pan over them, mixing well.

Spoon your sauce around the meatloaf and scatter over the rosemary and sage.

Put the pan back in the oven for 10–15 minutes until the sauce is bubbling and delicious.

Serve with a mixed leaf salad, fried potatoes and lemon wedges for squeezing over.






Serves 4

Osso bucco is the English spelling of ossobuco: the Italian for marrowbone, usually veal, when thick slices of shin are cut to include the bone. Shin is one of the toughest parts of any animal and therefore requires very long slow cooking. Try and hurry it up and you will end up with a texture akin to knicker elastic or worse. Leave it to simmer for hours, though, and the cartilaginous parts turn into a heavenly jelly that, with the bone marrow, lubricates the meat to produce a voluptuous dish with a silky sauce. This is one of the occasions when it pays to have lots of ingredients that will mingle as they cook to produce a dark, rich, velvety sauce. Like oxtail, slices of shin will vary greatly in size. This dish may also be made as a casserole using 650g/ 1½ lbs diced venison shoulder or shin but the cooking time for shoulder can be reduced to 2-2 ½ hours.

Ingredients
1 kg (2¼ lb) venison osso bucco cut into 8 or 16 slices
250g diced root vegetables (carrot, parsnip, turnip, celeriac)
1 large onion
3 cloves garlic
250g/ 8 oz stoned plums
300 ml (½ pt) red wine
200 ml port or red vermouth
200 ml stock or water
2 teaspoons balsamic vinegar
2 tablespoons rowan or redcurrant jelly
10 juniper berries, crushed
½ teasp. ground nutmeg
½ teasp. ground ginger
¼ teasp. ground cloves
Pepper, salt
Bunch of fresh herbs (thyme, fennel, rosemary)

4 large or 8 medium potatoes
Butter or oil
Coarse ground or flaked sea salt
Pepper

650g / 1½lbs carrots
1 tablespoon butter
150ml / ¼ pt cream
Pinch of coriander seeds
1 tablespoon fresh fennel

Method
Brown the root vegetables, onion and garlic, and place in a large casserole dish. Brown the osso bucco over a fierce heat and add them to the casserole with the plums, red wine, port, stock, balsamic vinegar, jelly, crushed juniper berries, spices, fresh herbs, and a pinch of salt. Bring to simmering point in a hot oven, then cover tightly and cook very slowly indeed at a low temperature till tender, which will take 4 – 6 hours.

An hour before you want to serve the osso bucco, prepare the potatoes. Push a skewer through them lengthways about 1 cm from the base. This is to prevent the knife cutting all the way through. With a sharp knife, make cuts about 4cm wide all the way along, as though you were partially slicing a loaf of bread. Carefully withdraw the skewer. Continue with the rest of the potatoes. Smear the tops with butter and/or drizzle with oil, sprinkle with sea salt and grind some pepper over them. Bake in a medium-hot oven (200º C) for about ¾ - 1 hour depending on size. When done, the potatoes will have opened out slightly, like a fan, crisp on top and moist in the centre.

While these cook, make the carrot mash. Peel and chop the carrots, boil for about 20 minutes till soft, then mash them with a tablespoon of butter and the cream. Season with salt and pepper, and finish by stirring in a tablespoon of fresh fennel leaves, snipped finely. Keep warm.

When the osso bucco is cooked, carefully remove the slices and divide them between four warmed plates. Strain the sauce from the vegetables, check the seasoning and spoon it round the meat. Serve with the hasselback potatoes and carrot mash.




© 2010 Nichola Fletcher

This misunderstood, throwaway cut can be revolutionised through long, slow cooking.Stuffed with our delicious venison sausagemeat, rolled and slowly braised, this sinewy, tough cut is transformed into an unctuous winter warming dish. Try my recipe, or let us know yours! The acid from the tomatoes and the wine tenderises the braise, creating a rich sauce that begs for creamy mashed potatoes or celeriac, polenta or pasta. Try making a day ahead then reheating it slowly.

1 Seriously Good Stuffed venison flank (approx 600g)
2 tbsp olive oil
1 onion, thinly sliced
1 large carrot, thickly sliced
2 garlic cloves, crushed
440g tin chopped tomatoes
1 large glass red wine
400ml venison stock (beef stock or water will work well too)
Fresh chopped parsley

Serves 2-3


1. In a high sided pot (with lid), heat the olive oil over a medium-high heat and brown the stuffed flank on all sides. Transfer to a plate.
2. Add the onions, carrots and garlic to the pan and cook over a medium heat until softened.
3. Add the tomatoes and wine and cook until reduced by half. Return the flank to the pot, spoon some sauce over it and add enough stock or water to cover the meat halfway.
4. Cover the pot, bring to the boil and place in the oven. Braise, turning the flank every 30 minutes until tender (3-4 hours), adding more stock if necessary, to keep the flank half covered.
5. Taste the finished sauce, and adjust seasoning with salt and pepper if liked. Remove the flank and allow it to rest for 5 minutes before removing the string, then slice thickly against the grain.
6. Garnish with parsley and serve with creamy mashed potatoes, celeriac, polenta or pasta.
Serves 4


This purée has just the right balance of tart to sweet; it is really more of a relish than a sauce as you don't need very much, so it's a good one for barbecues as well as indoor dining. If you have a glut of gooseberries, you can successfully substitute them for tart grapes. For once, grapes that are unripe work well. They make a good contrast to crisp sauté potatoes or home made chips. Any sort of steak may be used but I favour plump ones here. Use either thick-cut slices of haunch or loin, or whole fillets.


Ingredients

  • 700g (1½ lb) thick cut venison steaks
  • 2 small shallots, finely chopped
  • 350g (12 oz) green grapes, chopped
  • 3 tablespoons white wine vinegar
  • 1 small glass (100ml) dry white wine
  • (optional) 1 tablespoon chopped fresh coriander or parsley

To make the purée, soften the shallots in a very small amount of oil, and once softened, drain off any excess oil and add the chopped grapes, wine vinegar and wine. Boil them until the liquid has almost disappeared, then rub them though a small metal sieve, leaving only the grape skins & pips behind. This can be made ahead and kept warm if wished.

To cook the steaks, heat some butter and oil in a frying pan and brown them all over briskly. Lower the heat and continue to cook for a further 8 minutes (less if they are thinner), then remove from the heat and rest them for a further five minutes or to taste. Serve with chips or sauté potatoes, glazed carrots and a small pool of the green grape purée.
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