Roe and sika deer are in season from November. They provide an iron rich, dark red meat.
You can use fillet or haunch for this dish. If you are using haunch, ask your butcher to cut leg steaks about 2 cm thick. When using haunch, make sure the venison has been hung for a minimum of 17 days or so. This will help make sure it’s tender. I like to serve the steak blue to rare. Marinade the steaks with the bay, garlic and oil the day, or at least a couple hours, before.
Parsnips make a perfect accompaniment due to their sweetness and aromatics. Parsnips have also just come into season.
Waste not: If you have any puree left over make a soup just by adding a little extra milk.
Ingredients - serves 4 4 x 150g venison fillet or leg steaks Dash of olive oil 2 slightly crushed garlic cloves 2 bay leaves ripped into pieces - 400g parsnips, washed and cut into cubes 300g milk Small piece of cinnamon bark or very small pinch of powder Sprig of thyme
1) Marinate the steaks in the olive oil, garlic, bay and pepper for a minimum of 2 hours.
2) Simmer the parsnips in the milk with the thyme and cinnamon until soft.
3) Put the parsnip into the blender with a small amount of the milk. Blend to a stiff and smooth puree adding more milk if necessary. If the puree is lumpy, pass through a sieve.
4) The puree will be nice served warm or cold.
5) When you’r ready to eat, sear the steaks for 1 minute each side. Leave to rest in a warm place.
6) Slice the steak into 1 cm slices across the grain. Serve on a plate next to the puree.