Saturday, October 18, 2008

Venison with Roasted Vegetables and Citrus-Cranberry Sauce

If you're a hunter or have access to venison, you'll want to try this recipe that features fall flavors. It's so good, it's worth the time and effort (and it really doesn't take that long: 20 or 30 mins preptime, overnight to marinate, and just over an hour to cook). If you're cutting the zest off a fresh lemon and orange, make sure you use fruit that has not been coated in wax (scrub the fruit well under warm running water, then dry thoroughly before zesting).

Approx. 1 1/2 to 2 lbs venison tenderloin or backstrap, cut into 1 inch thick medallions
12 oz. small red potatoes, unpeeled & cut into quarters
2 red onions, cut into wedges
4 carrots, peeled, cut in half crosswise and then quartered lengthwise
4 Tbs Mama T's Olive Oil Vinaigrette
2 inch piece of fresh ginger, peeled and finely shredded
Zest of 1 orange, cut into very fine strips
Juice of 1 orange
Zest of 1 lemon, cut into very fine strips
Juice of 1 lemon
4 Tbs whole-berry jellied cranberry sauce
6 Tbs port
salt & pepper
Parsley for garnish (optional)

Place the venison medallions, potatoes, onions and carrots in a resealable plastic bag, pour in Mama T's Olive Oil Vinaigrette, seal the bag and shake to coat all pieces. Marinate overnight in the refrigerator.

Preheat oven to 400F. Remove the venison from the plastic bag, then pour the marinade and vegetables into a roasting pan (save the marinating bag) and place the pan in oven. Return the venison medallions to the marinating bag, add a little more Mama T's Olive Oil Vinaigrette, reseal bag and return to refrigerator while vegetables are roasting. Roast for 1 hour until the vegetables are browned and fork-tender.

If using a fresh orange and lemon to zest and juice, go ahead and prepare them while the vegetables are roasting (use a very sharp knife to remove the zest from the fruit, making sure to avoid the white pith, and then cut the zest into very fine strips; then juice the lemon and orange). Place the juice and zest from the lemon and orange into a small saucepan and add the ginger, cranberry sauce and port. Stir to combine and bring to a boil on the stove, then reduce heat and simmer for 10 to 15 minutes stirring occasionally, until sauce thickens slightly. Keep warm over low heat.

Preheat broiler or grill. Remove venison medallions from marinating bag (discard bag) and season to taste with salt & pepper. Broil or grill to desired doneness. Serve the venison with the citrus-cranberry sauce and roasted vegetables, and garnish with parsley if desired. Serves 4.

Zestfully yours,

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