03 January 2010

Venison Steaks

A few weeks ago I had got "Babette's Feast" from the library with the intention of introducing my husband to this amazing film about art, passion, and food. On the night we'd set to watch it, I wanted to make a meal befitting the mood (and satisfying enough that we wouldn't drool while we watched Babette cook). My idea was to cook something French or at least French-inspired. I settled on a menu of Cabbage and Bacon Salad, Pureed Sweet Potatoes, and Venison Steaks in Wine with Carrots and Mushrooms (sounds gourmet, right?). We both enjoyed the venison so much that I wrote down my recipe right away. David also commented that the lingering aroma from dinner created extra ambiance for our movie.

It's hard to make a slab of meat look appetizing in a picture, but press on past the image for what I thought was a pretty great recipe for the venison tenderloin steaks.

Venison Steaks in Wine with Carrots and Mushrooms
(that doesn't sound a bit pretentious, now, does it?)

Venison steaks (we had 6)
3 TBSP Olive oil
4-5 cloves garlic, smashed
1/2 cup red wine
1/2 cup medium sherry*
Sprig of fresh rosemary
1/4 tsp ground sage
1/4 tsp fresh-ground black pepper
1/2 medium onion, sliced
1 cup sliced mushrooms
1 or 2 carrots, thinly sliced into ovals

Instructions: Heat the olive oil in a medium-sized pan. Add garlic and saute over medium heat about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. In the meantime, rinse and dry the venison steaks. Place steaks in hot oil and sear a few minutes on both sides. Add wine, sherry, rosemary, sage, and black pepper. Reduce heat to low, cover the pan, and simmer for 30 minutes. Turn steaks over and simmer another 30 minutes. Add onions, mushrooms, and carrots, and cook until carrots are tender (about 5 minutes depending on the thickness). Some of the liquid may be drained off and used to make a gravy if desired. Bon Apetit!

*I used a mixture of wine and sherry because that's what I had on hand. It seems like using all wine or cooking wine would do just as well. Alternatively, you could experiment with apple juice or beef bullion.

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