Venison kebabs and kumara soup

RUTH PRETTY
Last updated 10:50 03/09/2012
venison
CHRIS SKELTON/Fairfax NZ

RICH: Farm-raised venison kebabs with sesame.

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I often cook farm-raised venison medallions for 'in a hurry' dinners at home. They require no preparation. I cook as I would a steak but never beyond medium rare, as they will become liverish.

Venison is very savoury so I usually serve it very simply but sometimes I go to more trouble, incorporating Asian flavours as in the recipe today.

Farm-raised venison is low in fat but richer than other red meats, so use a smaller quantity. It is very satisfying.

Here is one of my favourite midweek dinners with the addition of soup to make it more weekend-friendly.

CURRIED KUMARA SOUP

Serves 8

A creamy vegetable soup is just what the doctor ordered to restore mental health after winter.

50g (5 Tbsp) butter

180g (1 medium) onion, peeled and chopped

1 clove garlic, peeled and finely chopped

1kg kumara, peeled and roughly chopped

1 Tbsp flour

1 Tbsp curry powder

600ml (2 1/3 cups + 1 Tbsp) water

600ml (2 1/3 cups + 1 Tbsp) chicken stock liquid

150ml ( 1/2 cup + 1 Tbsp + 2 tsp) cream

1 tsp flaky sea salt

1/8 tsp freshly ground pepper

1 Tbsp chopped chives or chopped parsley

Place butter into a heavy-based saucepan set over a low-medium heat and melt.

Add onion, garlic and kumara. Cover and cook for 10 minutes or until vegetables begin to soften but do not brown.

Add flour and curry powder and stir while cooking for 3-4 minutes until mixture begins to smell nutty.

Add water and stock, increase heat and bring to the boil. Cover but with lid set ajar.

Reduce heat. Simmer for 25-30 minutes or until kumara is tender.

Puree the soup (in batches) in a food processor fitted with a metal blade, or in a blender. Alternatively puree in the saucepan using a wand. Cool and refrigerate.

To serve: Pour soup into a clean pot set over a medium heat. Bring it to just below the boil.

Add cream, stir and heat through. Taste for seasoning.

Serve in warmed bowls garnished with chives or parsley.

FARM-RAISED VENISON KEBABS WITH SESAME

Makes 30 skewers

Many supermarkets sell farm-raised venison in convenient-sized packages. For dinner, serve each person four to six skewers and accompany with steamed rice and salad to follow.

300g farm-raised venison medallions

Sesame Marinade

10ml (2 tsp) olive oil

40g (1/4 cup) sesame seeds, lightly toasted

1/2 tsp flaky sea salt

1/8 tsp freshly ground black pepper

30 short wooden skewers

Cut venison into 60 x 1.5cm cubes. Place into a bowl. Add Sesame Marinade and toss together. Refrigerate for 4 hours or overnight.

Place venison into a sieve to drain off marinade. Discard marinade.

Heat barbecue, stovetop flat plate or heavy-based frypan to hot. Smear cooking surface with oil. Place venison (in batches) on to cooking surface without overcrowding. Using a scraper, quickly move venison around so it is seared on all sides and medium-rare in the centre.

Place venison in a bowl, sprinkle with sesame seeds and season with salt and pepper. Working quickly skewer two pieces of venison on to each skewer. Serve.

SESAME MARINADE

Makes 75ml

Ingredients 30ml (2 Tbsp) sesame oil

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18g (1 1/2 Tbsp) brown sugar

30ml (2 Tbsp) tamari soy sauce

1 tsp finely chopped onion

1 clove garlic, peeled and chopped

2cm knob fresh ginger, peeled and chopped

1/4 tsp freshly ground black pepper

Place all ingredients into a food processor bowl fitted with metal blade. Process until combined.

WINTER SALAD WITH YOGHURT, BANANA AND CORIANDER DRESSING

Serves 8

8 generous handfuls of salad greens, rinsed and dried, preferably in a salad spinner

1 orange, peeled and segmented

2 radishes, topped, tailed and cut into matchsticks

Yoghurt, Banana and Coriander Dressing

Gently tear salad greens into forkable pieces and place into a salad bowl.

Scatter with orange segments and radish.

Drizzle with some of the Yoghurt, Banana and Coriander Dressing. Serve.

YOGHURT, BANANA AND CORIANDER DRESSING

Makes 340ml

This recipe, given to me by Christchurch chef Graham Brown, is in my list of top five dressings. Go Graham.

155g (1) very ripe banana, peeled

1/8 tsp toasted and ground coriander seed

1/3 cup coriander leaves and stalks, roughly chopped

30ml (2 Tbsp) lime juice

finely grated zest of 1 lime

200ml Greek-style yoghurt

Place banana, coriander seed, chopped coriander, lime juice and zest into a food processor fitted with metal blade. Process until banana is smooth.

Transfer to a bowl, add yoghurt and stir to combine.

Refrigerate for a minimum of 1 hour for flavours to infuse. Serve chilled.

Store in refrigerator in a covered container for up to three days.

- The Dominion Post

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