Wednesday, August 3, 2016

Venison + Blackberries + Sage = Delicious!!!

venison medallions on a blackberry-sage red wine reduction sauce
(adapted from a Moira Hodgson recipe found in the New York Times Food Pages)

As you may know, we've had an alarmingly huge chanterelle and blackberry harvest here in MO this year and have been desperately searching for new ways to use them, and have even considered paying folks to come take some of the harvest off our hands!. So...
I only ever get to have venison when I'm here in COMO (but, in the last year,we've enjoyed it a time or two at home in Norwalk as family friend, Katie, has been sharing the venison her brother hunts, with us), and in my parents freezer was a nice hunk of venison tenderloin that mom said we should have while I was here. So, off to Google I went to find out if venison and blackberries ever even go together. Yup, they do! There were several recipes out there that married the two together, and the one that sounded the very best was the one I found on the New York Times Food Page. That recipe also called for fresh sage, and as mom and dad have a huge sage plant out their side door, the triple pairing was perfect!

The not so much throw 'n go:

To serve 3 folks:

For the sauce:
1 C. dry red wine (we used cabernet sauvignon)
1 medium red onion, chopped
2 C. fresh blackberries (or blueberries)
1 C. strong veal/chicken/beef stock (we used a cup from a roasted chicken - delicious!)
2 T. unsalted (always unsalted) butter
salt & fresh ground black pepper to taste
1 - 2 T. honey
6 - 10 fresh sage leaves

For the medallions: 
1 lb. venison tenderloin, cut into 6 uniform slices/medallions
1 T. grape seed or olive oil
1 T. unsalted butter

The steps:

1. To make the sauce, combine the wine and onion in a saucepan and bring to a boil. Cook until the liquid is reduced to about half a cup. Add the berries and return the liquid to a simmer. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the berries are soft and falling apart, about 15 minutes. Add the stock and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and cook, stirring occasionally, until the sauce is reduced and coats the back of a spoon, about 15 more minutes.
Strain the sauce and return it to the pan. Whisk in the butter, one tablespoon at a time. Add the salt, pepper and honey and steep for 15 to 20 minutes, or until ready to use - keep warm. (Remove the sage leaves just before serving.)

2. Season the venison medallions with salt and pepper. In a large sauté pan, heat the oil and butter to nearly smoking. Carefully place the medallions in the pan and sauté for 3 minutes, being careful not to crowd the pan. Turn and sauté to medium rare, about 2 more minutes.

3. To serve, spoon sauce onto the center of your serving plate, placing 2 medallions in the center of each plate. Serve your other sides around the medallions. If you have extra sauce, serve it on the side.

Our meal:
veal medallions w/a blackberry-sage red wine reduction sauce
basmati rice
sautéed chanterelle mushrooms
green salad w/cucumbers and homemade vinaigrette
homemade bread dipped in the pan juices
Deliciousness all around!



till we eat again!

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