Pan Fried Loin of Venison with Chestnut Sauce
It takes just 15 minutes to prepare and make the sauce and cook the venison, so it's hardly a great deal of work.
For maximum flavour it's worth leaving the meat in the marinade overnight, although a couple of hours would do if you're pushed.
For six people:
1 whole loin of venison, boned and trimmed (usually around 1.5 kg / 3 lb)
450 ml / 15 fl oz robust red wine like Rioja, Merlot or Cahors
50 ml / red wine vinegar
2 cloves garlic, peeled and squashed
1 medium red onion, chopped
25 ml extra virgin olive oil
6 whole black peppercorns
a bunch of fresh parsley, bay leaves, sprig of rosemary, sprig of thyme – tied together
pinch of coarse sea salt
Put the meat in the marinade, cover tightly, keep in the fridge and turn the meat occasionally.
For the chestnut sauce:
1 tin unsweetened chestnut puree
200 ml / 7 fl oz vegetable or chicken stock
50 ml Madeira wine
30 ml single cream
a generous knob of soft unsalted butter
a pinch each of cinnamon, allspice and nutmeg
Gently combine all the ingredients in a bowl over a saucepan of boiling water (a bain-marie is best if you have one) and whisk to the consistency of thin cream.
Meanwhile remove meat from the marinade, pat dry, heat some olive oil and a little butter in a large frying pan.
Add the meat in one piece and turn regularly till brown and slightly crusty on the outside – about 5-6 minutes.
Remove meat, cover with foil and leave to rest.
Add 6 tablespoons of marinade to the pan and cook till reduced by half.
Slice the meat into half inch rounds, pour over a spoon of the juice and serve with chestnut sauce on the side, and a watercress and lemon juice salad.
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