Loin is probably the best cut for roasting or sautéeing. It cooks in minutes, so seal it well and cook for the shortest time possible, then leave it in a warm place to ﬁnish cooking. If you overcook it, it will be dry and stringy. A well-reduced game stock is essential for the small amount of sauce you are serving here. It’s almost a seasoning with a big ﬂavour punch. I use frozen blackcurrants as the freezing process breaks down the cell structure, allowing more ﬂavour and giving a brilliant colour to the sauce.
Preparation: 20 mins
Cooking: about 15 mins, plus 10 mins for the leeks
- Slice each leek in half from top to bottom, leaving the whole thing attached at the root end. Turn and slice each half in half again so that you end up with four pieces attached at the root. Wash, slice as thinly as possible, discard ends and drain well.
- Heat the butter with the olive oil in a sauté pan until the bubbling subsides, then add the leeks and stir well. Add the stock cube, pepper and wine or water and cook over a high heat until the leeks just start to soften. Then spoon into a colander.
- These can be made in advance and chilled, then warmed in a microwave or sauté pan with a little oil or unsalted butter when ready to serve.
2 tablespoons olive oil
4 x 200g pieces of venison loin – Roe, Fallow, Red or Sika or small antelope or springbok
salt and freshly ground black pepper
300ml red wine
600ml strong venison or game stock
6 tablespoons crème de cassis
200g frozen blackcurrants, defrosted
10g ice-cold unsalted butter
- 2 large leeks
- 50g unsalted butter
- 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, plus a little extra (or butter) to serve
- half of a 10g good-quality vegetable stock cube, crumbled
- freshly ground black pepper
- 2 tablespoons white wine or water
- Preheat the oven to 220°C/fan 200°C/gas 7.
- Heat the olive oil in an ovenproof frying pan.Season the loins well, add to the hot oil, brown well on both sides, then transfer to the oven and roast for 5–6 minutes.
- Remove the pan from the oven, then transfer the venison to a warm plate, cover loosely with foil and leave to rest in a warm place for 6–8 minutes.
- While the meat rests, tip away any oil from the frying pan, then add the wine and boil rapidly over a high heat.
- When nearly all evaporated, add the stock and reduce rapidly to one-quarter of the original volume until you have a nicely thickened sauce.
- Add the cassis, half the blackcurrants and the butter and whisk well. Taste and adjust the seasoning, then strain through a ﬁne sieve into a clean saucepan.
- Add the rest of the blackcurrants and stir well, being careful not to break them up.
- Slice the rested loins and drain well on kitchen paper.
- Arrange the warmed cooked leeks on warm plates and top with the sliced loin. Spoon over the sauce, including a few whole blackcurrants.
The Yorkshire Dales is famous for producing top-quality game, and now that autumn’s here it’s time to make the most of it.
Many home cooks steer away from game because they’re unsure what to do with it – which is a shame, because game meats are sustainably farmed, tasty, and low in fat and cholesterol.
Local suppliers such as Mainsgill Farm Shop, near Richmond, carry a wide selection and are always happy to advise.
Recipes and photographs are from Game by Phil Vickery and Simon Boddy, with photography by Peter Cassidy, published by Kyle Books.