Craig Wilson, also known as The Kilted Chef, loves to cook venison thanks to its amazing flavour. This recipe will make you fall in love with the meat.
Venison is a meat I love to cook with. Its deep colour and bold flavour makes it the perfect centrepiece for an autumn feast.
Sealing the meat in a pan, then oven roasting, will help keep it succulent and perfectly pink in the middle.
Today’s recipe has a creamy blue cheese topping and is teamed with spiced nuts, both of which complement the richness of the venison.
While the venison cooks away in the oven, head outdoors for a refreshing pre-dinner drink, with my warming apple and gin shots.
Rosemary and pancetta-wrapped venison, served with parsnip puree, warm spiced nuts and Strathdon Blue rarebit
- 2 x 150g Aberdeenshire Larder Wild Venison loin fillets
- 4 rashers of pancetta
- 4 sprigs of fresh rosemary
For the spiced nuts:
- 1 cinnamon stick
- 3 cloves
- 1 star anise
- ½ tsp ground cinnamon
- 2 tsp soft, dark brown sugar
- A pinch of nutmeg
- 10ml Mackintosh of Glendaveny Cold Pressed Rapeseed Oil
- 100g mixed nuts
- 15g salted butter
- A pinch of salt
For the rarebit topping:
- 2 egg yolks
- ½ tsp English mustard
- 1 tsp Worcester sauce
- 40g Strathdon Blue cheese
- 5g flat leaf parsley
For the parsnip puree:
- 500g parsnips
- 125g milk
- 125g double cream
- 25g salted butter
- Start by making the parsnip puree: Peel the parsnips and chop into small cubes.
Place in a pan with the milk and cream, and over a medium heat, bring to a simmer. Cook until tender (about 12-15 minutes).
- Remove the parsnips from the pan with some of the cooking liquid and pop in a blender.
- While the machine is on, slowly add the remaining liquid – you may not need to use it all – until it reaches a smooth consistency and resembles whipped cream and forms soft peaks. Stir in the butter and season to taste.
- For the spiced nuts: Warm the oil in a pan then add the cinnamon stick, star anise, cloves, ground cinnamon, nutmeg, sugar and a pinch of salt.
Stir together then, once the sugar has dissolved, add the nuts and butter and keep stirring until the butter is melted and the nuts are glossy.
- Remove from the heat, keep warm until ready to serve.
- For the venison: Lay out two strips of pancetta, place the venison inside with a sprig of rosemary on top and wrap the pancetta around to form a parcel. Do the same with the second venison fillet.
- In a non-stick frying pan, add a splash of rapeseed oil and heat until the pan is slightly smoking.
- Place the venison parcels in the middle of the pan and cook on each side for around a minute to seal the meat and crisp the pancetta. Remove from the heat, but leave the venison in the pan.
- For the rarebit topping: Place two egg yolks in a bowl and add the mustard and Worcester sauce.
- Crumble in the Strathdon Blue cheese add chopped parsley. Crush the mixture together with a fork.
- Spoon 1 tbsp of the mixture on top of each piece of venison.
- Pre-heat the oven to 220C/fan 200C/425F or gas mark 7.
- Place the venison in an ovenproof dish and cook in the oven for six to seven minutes, until the cheese is melting and bubbly.
- To serve: Put two generous tbsps of parsnip puree in the centre of a warmed plate, and spread out into a circle.
- Spoon the nuts around the edge of the puree, then place the venison in the centre.
Mulled apple and gin shots
- 250ml concentrated apple juice
- 1 fresh chilli (sliced and deseeded or whole)
- 6 cardamon pods
- 6 cloves
- ½ an orange
- 1 tbsp granulated sugar
- 1 cinnamon stick
- 50ml House of Elrick Gin
- Bash the cardamon pods using a rolling pin and cut the orange into slices.
- Place these, and the remaining ingredients into a pan. Bring to boil then switch off.
- Remove from the heat and place a lid on top of the pan. Leave to cool for two hours to allow all the flavours to infuse.
- Strain the liquid through a sieve.
- When required, reheat until piping hot.
- Pour into shot glasses and serve.