Thursday, 5 February 2009

Venison Steak and Chocolate Sauce (from Ready Steady Cook)

This week in Tesco, there were some reduced-to-clear venison steaks. I have never bought these before since I think they are a bit too expensive, but at £2.95 for two steaks it was a bargain not to be missed. Venison is a really healthy meat, high in protein (~30-40 g/per steak) and low in fat (~2 g per steak). I searched around for a recipe, or some tips on what to do with it. The flavours that seem to be matched with venison usually include chocolate, red wine or red berries of some kind. Even in a book I own, "The Wild Gourmets", where the authors focus on hunting and cooking wild food, they recommend braised venison shoulder with chocolate. So, I thought, this must be the way to go. I have never had chocolate in a savoury dish before, and it just so happens that there was a bar of Green and Blacks 70% in the cupboard. So, I went ahead and prepared something based very closely on this recipe that I found from Ready Steady Cook by Lesley Walters.


2 venison steaks

4 tbsp olive oil
1 garlic clove, crushed
freshly ground black pepper

1 red onion, chopped
60 g/2 oz butter
200 ml red wine
dried red chilli, crushed
30 g melted chocolate

Marinade the steaks in the olive oil, garlic and black pepper.

Melt the butter in a small pan, then fry the red onion until soft. Add the red onion and dried chilli, and simmer on a low heat until reduced by half (this took about 15-20 minutes).

Melt the chocolate, either in a bain Marie, or in a dish in the microwave. Remove the sauce from the heat, add the chocolate and stir well.

Heat up a griddle pan or large frying pan to a high heat. Take the steaks, season with a little salt and pepper and place in your hot griddle pan. Cook the steaks for 3-4 minutes on each side, and don't wiggle the steaks around whilst cooking - they will build up a nice kind of "crust" in this way.

Remove from the griddle pan and leave to rest for 5 minutes or so. This allows all the juices to redistribute themselves throughout the meat and so making it more juicy.

Serve at once with the chocolate sauce (you can add any meat juices to the pan as well if you wish - I didn't get much juice out of the meat though).

As you can see, it looks a little bit like meat with some poo on the plate.

The venison itself was very nice, moist and juicy meat and felt lighter in texture than a beef steak. This was farmed venision, so I imagine that wild hunted venison would be even nicer.

The sauce was not so nice. It did go ok with the venison, but the chocolate flavour was a little bit too overpowering. There was a chocolately bitterness that was not balanced out by the other tastes - perhaps next time I will use less (or no) chocolate!

This is what we ended up with leftover... lots of sauce in the pan and a fair amount on the plate too.

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Ruth E said...

Sorry to hear it didn't end up being so nice but good on ya for giving it a go!

foodbin said...

a good effort-job well done!

Shelly said...

I am not a fan of venison but my hubby grew up eating deer meat so to this day, every once in awhile he gets hungry for it and I will make it. I usually do it in the crockpot with some tomato sauce, spices & herbs and so forth. He prefers vension roast compared to the steaks though. Great blog!

Xponent said...

Thank you for sharing the recipe. It looks delicious! You are right, venison is little bit expensive but tasty. Recently I have visited a website which full of venison recipes. I liked the Grilled Deer Burger very much and I like to share it with you.

You will need:

• 1 pound ground venison
• 1 pound fatty ground beef
• 1/4 cup bread crumbs
• 1 whole egg
• 2 tablespoons of finely chopped red onion
• 1 tablespoon of finely chopped green pepper
• 2 teaspoons salt
• 1 teaspoon black pepper
• 1 teaspoon paprika
• 1 teaspoon liquid smoke
• 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper


Combine all of the ingredients, mixing will. Form into patties and grill over medium high heat for 4 to 6 minutes per side or until the internal temperature of the venison burgers reaches 160F. Try this: a couple of minutes before removing the burgers from the grill, put slices of smoky provolone cheese on top. Yum!