# 218 Outside the Meat Box: Wild Game

Marinated Venison Chops with a Horseradish Crust and Currant Sauce

Serves 4

1/2 cup dried currants
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 carrot, chopped
1 stalk celery, chopped
1 onion, peeled, chopped
2 garlic cloves, peeled, chopped
Salt and pepper
3 tablespoons red wine vinegar
2 tablespoons juniper berries
2 ½ cups red wine, such as pinot noir
1 sprig fresh basil
1 sprig fresh parsley
1 sprig fresh tarragon
1 4-inch piece celery
1 rack venison (about 2 pounds), well trimmed
2 cups beef broth
1 tablespoon olive oil
8 tablespoons horseradish
8 tablespoons brioche breadcrumbs

1. Place currants in a fine mesh strainer and submerge into a bowl of very hot water. Let currants soak to rehydrate, for approximately 10 minutes.
2. To make the marinade, heat oil in a sauté pan over medium high heat. When oil is hot, add carrots, celery, onion and garlic and season with salt and pepper. Sauté vegetables for 2 to 3 minutes, or until the onions are translucent.
3. Add vinegar, juniper berries and red wine.
4. Make a Bouquet Garni by placing the basil, parsley and tarragon into the curved part of the celery and tying tightly with string. Submerge the Bouquet into the wine mixture.
5. Bring the mixture to simmer and let cook 10 minutes. Remove from heat and let the mixture come to room temperature.
6. Pour cooled marinade mixture over venison in a large container so that it is submerged and cover with plastic or place meat and marinade in a seal-tight plastic bag. Marinate overnight, or up to 24 hours, turning venison over after 6 hours.
7. Remove venison from marinade and pat dry with paper towels.
8. Strain the marinade through a fine mesh strainer into a saucepan and place over medium heat. Bring to a simmer, and reduce marinade down to ½ cup of sauce.
9. Add beef broth to sauce, bring to a simmer. Drain the liquid from the soaking currants, and add currants to sauce. Season with salt and pepper.
10. Preheat oven to 375F.
11. Slice venison in between bones into individual chops. Season generously with salt and pepper on both sides.
12. In a large skillet, heat oil over high heat until smoking. Sear chops on each side approximately 3 minutes until well browned. When searing, do not overlap the chops in the pan and leave some room between each one.
13. Transfer chops to a roasting pan or baking dish. Over each chop spread 1 tablespoon of horseradish, then sprinkle with 1 tablespoon breadcrumbs.
14. Transfer baking sheet into oven and cook for 6 minutes, or until chops are medium rare and crusts are golden brown.
15. Spoon sauce onto a plate, and place venison chops over it.

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Copyright © 2009 Hubert Keller. All rights reserved.